Becoming a champion is something Matt Brown keeps in the back of his mind. The 170-pound fighter is working towards that fate, but said he first has to prove he’s one that should be considered a title contender, if he hasn’t proven it already.
Currently on a six-fight winning streak, Brown is preparing the face Erick Silva in the main event at this weekend’s UFC Fight Night card in Cincinnati. The pairing with Silva was a surprise at first, Brown said, because he thought he would draw someone higher on the UFC rankings. But it’s no problem, he said, saying it doesn’t matter because if he can’t beat someone like Silva, he shouldn’t be champ anyway.
“I’ve never turned down a fight. I just love fighting and it’s going to be great to [fight] in my hometown,” he told The Great MMA Debate Podcast. “I’m just going to enjoy that moment and get in there and fight the best that I can. If I can’t beat Erick Silva, maybe I shouldn’t be champ anyway. I gotta get in there and do what I gotta do to Erick Silva and we’ll just go from there and keep building on this momentum.”
While Brown said he might deserve someone further up the UFC ladder, he described Silva as a legitimate threat that can ruin everything the Ohio fighter has worked towards. For now, Brown will keep his crosshairs on Silva on his way to getting more respect and an eventual title shot.
“I think I’m definitely being overlooked by a lot of people,” he said. “All I can do is keep doing what I’m doing and just keep this train rolling, and I believe the respect will come. For now, it’s just not even on my mind. I got Erick Silva [next] and he’s a huge threat, a legitimate opponent … he’s dangerous. [Being overlooked] is kind of at the back of my mind.
“I’ve worked my way into being in [title contender] talks and I feel like I can beat anybody in the top 10.”
Part of working towards the title shot is fighting like there’s no tomorrow, Brown said. This weekend’s fight will be a contest where he's fighting like the loser has to retire, and ending his career isn’t something he has planned.
Brown admitted that he can see Silva as a champion one day. The only problem Silva has is Brown is standing in front of him with a tomorrow-won’t-happen attitude, and that’s not good for anyone.
“I totally think he can be a UFC champion… if he didn’t have to fight me,” Brown said. “I’m going to put a stop to that. If I wasn’t in this division, I think he’d have all the tools to be there.
“I believe if I’m the best that I can be, I really don’t think anybody can beat me, ever.”
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