It was announced this past Saturday that Anthony Morrison will be former featherweight champion Mike Brown’s welcome back opponent at WEC 46 on Jan. 10th in Sacramento, California. The bout with Morrison marks Brown’s return to the cage after only two months since his first round TKO loss to current featherweight champion Jose Aldo at WEC 44. It was Brown’s request for the speedy turnaround stating in a recent interview with Sherdog that throughout his career it’s been customary for him to quickly bounce back into the cage after a loss.
“Whenever I lose I’m amped to get in there as soon as possible to get it behind me,” Brown said. “I’ve always been like that. When I win, I don’t mind taking a little time off and enjoying it.”
Suffering a loss to the more dominant Jose Aldo (16-1), who is on a nine fight winning streak, is a common scenario all titleholders have to accept at some point in their championship career due to continuously fighting top tier contenders, Brown has been quoted saying:
“It’s hard to beat the best guys in the world over and over,” Brown said. “When you’re fighting the top two or three guys in the world each time, over and over and over and over and over, it’s hard not to let one slip through your fingers.
“If you’re fighting easy fights, yeah, you could win 20 in a row. But when you’re fighting the guys that are second in the world, third in the world, first in the world, third in the world, that type of competition, you don’t win every game.”
The 34 year old Mike Brown (22-5) further explained to Sherdog that entering the Aldo with the wrong mentality acted as a catalyst to his fall from the top of the WEC 155lbs mountain.
“It wasn’t me that night, it wasn’t me out there, I didn’t want to fight that night,” Brown said. “I just got 18 stitches above my eye six days before the fight. I was training with Thiago Alves and I got kneed in the face. I saw a plastic surgeon and he gave me 18 (dissolvable stitches) above my eye. I went in to fight because I needed to fight, for the money and you make a commitment to fight. I was nervous and tentative. I didn’t have that same aggressiveness. I was more like, ‘what the f— am I doing here?’ That kind of mentality.”
Brown will get his chance to redeem himself against WEC rookie, Anthony “Cheese Steak” Morrison (10-7). He is a familiar opponent who left a lasting impression on the former featherweight champ after his September fight with one of Brown’s American Top Team training partners, Micah Miller.
“I knew who he was because I was there when he fought Micah Miller,” Brown said of the September fight involving his American Top Team training partner. “I met the kid, he’s a cool kid. They announced him and they called him, ‘Cheesecake,’ Anthony ‘Cheesecake’ Morrison. And he got all pissed. He goes, ‘No man, it’s Cheese Steak. Cheese steak.’ That was his nickname.”
After the loss to Miller, Morrison bounced back with back-to-back wins in smaller organizations against Jeff Lentz and UFC veteran Alvin Robinson. The latter win came from a first round TKO, a testament to Morrison’s striking power. It’s a strength Brown recognizes and hopes will add to an explosive fight. “Morrison is just a guy who they put in front of me,” Brown said. “He’s got some big wins he’s coming off, he’s tough; he hits hard. It should be an exciting fight.”