Once one of the most promising prospects in the UFC, Brandon Vera found his stock slipping over the past few years, to the point where he was cut from the UFC following a one-sided loss to Thiago Silva. Fortunately for The Truth, his time outside of the promotion lasted only long enough for him to realize what he’d lost and prompt him to reorganize his priorities, as it was learned shortly after the bout that Silva had submitted a non-human urine sample to hide his steroid usage. With that revelation, the UFC brought Vera back into the fold for a fair chance at keeping his career in the promotion going.
This weekend, the 34-year-old will face off against the similarly-positioned Eliot Marshall in a fight where the loser will likely forfeit their spot on the UFC’s roster, at least for now. Speaking with FightLine today, Vera explained that, though the stakes are high, his mind isn’t on keeping his job or proving a point to anyone – he’s just looking to put the hurt on Eliot Marshall.
“I don’t think about that kind of stuff. I think y’all worry about that more than the fighters do,” said Vera. “I’m just going out there trying to fight, knock his ass out.”
To do so, the seasoned competitor knows that he’ll have to avoid Marshall’s attempts to bring the fight to the mat, where he’ll most likely have the best shot at handing Vera a loss.
“He’s got great jiu-jitsu. I know he’s gonna want to take this fight to the ground, he’s with the Greg Jackson camp, that’s kind of their thing, to take people to the ground or stall them out for the first round, feel them out. It’s not a big secret,” he said. “I want to be able to hit this guy and not be stalled out. It’s going to be part of the gameplan, to stop him from implementing his.”
Vera also spoke about how TRX has helped with his workouts for this fight.
“TRX is awesome, I’ve been using it all through camp,” said Vera. “I’ve been able to incorporate it in my training sessions along with my other three-a-day workouts. … I’ve noticed a huge difference man. I’m stronger, I feel like I’m lifting weights but I’m not, I’m just using my body weight. It’s such an important piece of equipment that is so underutilized in our sport, but I think people are starting to catch on, especially with Brian Stann using it and Frankie Edgar.”
With his mind focused primarily on the fight game and reestablishing himself as a premier contender in the light heavyweight division, Vera warned us to expect a bloodthirsty competitiveness from him on Saturday night and from here on out in his career.
“You’ll see a lot more viciousness coming from me,” said Vera. “You’ll see what I used to look like, what I should’ve been looking like the whole time I was fighting.”
And if things go perfectly for The Truth this Saturday night?
“Oh man, he’ll be bleeding, laid out flat. Flat down on the mat,” he said. “In a perfect world, that’s exactly how it would be.”
Vera and Marshall will meet on the preliminary card portion of UFC 137: Penn vs. Diaz this Saturday, October 29, at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. FightLine will be back on the night with live, ongoing coverage of the event.