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Daron Cruickshank Happy to Embrace the Boos and Win Fans Over at UFC 158

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Daron Cruickshank Happy to Embrace the Boos and Win Fans Over at UFC 158
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Daron Cruickshank Happy to Embrace the Boos and Win Fans Over at UFC 158

TUF 15 alumnus Daron Cruickshank will embrace the jeers from the crowd when he steps into the Octagon on Saturday night at UFC 158 when he takes on Canadian hometown hero John Makdessi in Montreal.

“I always embrace these boos and all that,” Cruickshank told official MMAWeekly.com content partner Knockout Radio. “The funny thing is, today I walked into a supplement store and the guy there recognized me from when I fought Mike Ricci last.”

“And he was like, ‘Dude, that was awesome, dah, dah, dah.  You came out, everyone was booing, it was hostile, and you did a great job and won the fans over.' And that's what I'm looking to do this time.”

Cruickshank, who has fought twice in the UFC for two wins since progressing from The Ultimate Fighter series, recorded a head-kick knockout over Henry Martinez in his most recent fight at UFC on FOX 5, but he's expecting a tough striking display from Makdessi on Saturday.

“He's got a pretty good striking background, that's what he's known for,” said Cruickshank. “I feel like he's a fish on his back. He doesn't really know what is going on.  And I would say little wrestling, probably works a lot on wrestling as far as takedown defense. I don't expect him to shoot on me; I'd probably laugh at him.

“But you've got to be ready for everything,” he continued. ” Once you hit somebody, they might resort to something else, so I work on everything.  He's really good at spinning side kicks, hook kicks, stuff like that, so the more traditional style of martial arts, and that's right up my alley so I feel good, I feel comfortable about this.”

The 27-year-old, who hasn't suffered a loss since February 2011, is feeling better about his weight cut and doesn't expect to feeling like he's ‘dying' this time around.

“I don't actually cut a whole lot of weight,” Cruickshank revealed. ” My weight cuts have gotten pretty good over the last couple of fights and I'm not really dying.”

But for Cruickshank, it's just about having fun.

“I like to have fun and I'm not one of those guys that are like mean mugging people all day; I like to smile.  I don't treat day-of-fights or just fights in general as a fight, it's a sport.  And I treat it just like when I'm in practice.  I want to have fun in practice and I want to have fun in a fight.”

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