'Cowboy' Cerrone says he'll KO ex-UFC champ Conor McGregor in second round
A lightweight showdown (potentially for an interim title) between Cerrone (35-11 MMA, 22-8 UFC) and McGregor (21-4 MMA, 9-2 UFC) appears to be close to coming to fruition after UFC President Dana White recently told MMAjunkie that “Cowboy” is the frontrunner to fight the former dual-UFC champ.
Although Cerrone has seen and done almost everything during his remarkable 30 UFC appearances, the chance to fight “The Notorious” brings a different excitement out of him. He called the matchup his “dream” fight, and promises to bring his best against the brash Irishman.
“This is a fight that I think everyone is going to love,” Cerrone said during a fan Q&A, which MMAjunkie attended, ahead of Saturday’s UFC 234 event in Australia. “I’m very excited to be involved with him. How am I going to beat him? I’m going to go out there and give it hell like I always do.
McGregor, the former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion, is currently serving a six-month suspension from the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his role in the infamous post-fight melee after his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 229 in October. He will be eligible to retune in April.
Cerrone is an opponent who has been consistently discussed since he earned a second-round TKO of Alexander Hernandez at UFC on ESPN+ 1 in January. McGregor afterward expressed interest in the contest, and the situation has positively progressed from there.
UFC boss White said he would make the fight is both men want it, and Cerrone certainly does – as soon as possible.
“It’s definitely going to be this year, this summer I think,” Cerrone said. “But hey, Irish, Australian, American – (expletive) root for whoever you want. I love it man. Boo, cheer.”
If the matchup does materialize as Cerrone believes it will, he said he’s not going to make any secrets about his approach. With the most wins (22) and finishes (16) in UFC history, there aren’t many secrets about Cerrone’s style at this point. That matters not to him, though.
“I’m just going to go out there and fight my ass off,” Cerrone said. “I really am. Definitely the standup – I’m going to stand and fight him. I’m not going to try to wrestle him, I’m going to (expletive) stand and give you all what you want to see.”
As far as a specific prediction, Cerrone is confident he will catch McGregor with his patented head kick, which he’s used to finish seven fights in the octagon for another promotional record.
“(My prediction is a) second-round head kick (knockout),” Cerrone said.
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