(Guillard discusses his game plan for UFC 150. To summarize it in a word: Kill, kill, kill.)
Allow me to begin this article with a series of understatements:
Now, whether any of these notions has any influence over your view of how Cerrone vs. Guillard will go down is a moot point. If you were to ask Cerrone how he thinks he will fare against Guillard on Saturday night at UFC 150, however, his response would be something along the line of “Where’s that bitch Anthony Pettis? Tell him to stop ducking me!”
Confused? Well so were we when we heard Cerrone’s recent interview with Inside MMA, where he all but completely disregards the fact that he is fighting one of the most dangerous strikers in the lightweight division this weekend, and instead focused his crosshairs on the former (and final) WEC lightweight champion:
I definitely wanna go after that title, and getting a rematch with Henderson would be an honor. That’d be sweet, for the belt. But, I really wanna fight Anthony Pettis. I want him to quit crying about his hurt shoulder and step up and fight me. I don’t know what I gotta do. Just grab your purse and let’s dance, brother.
If the odds are any indication, Cerrone will handily defeat Guillard on Saturday, most likely by taking him down and submitting him. Specifically, with a rear-naked choke. So maybe Cerrone has the right to look past Guillard. His ground game is so far above that of his opponent that it’s almost laughable, and besides, its not like Guillard has ever been a smart fighter. Just ask Jim Miller. But you know who else had a far superior ground game to Guillard, and was heavily favored to submit him inside of the first round? Evan Dunham, and look how that ended.
The point I’m trying to make is that, although Melvin may never have the all around game that Cerrone possesses, he hits harder than any other fighter in the division, and has pretty great takedown defense when he’s not throwing a barrage of flying knees. Looking past a guy like Guillard is not only foolish, it’s plain dangerous. There is also the issue of Cerrone’s pride, which could lead him to stand and trade with an arguably more lethal striker as it did in the Nate Diaz fight (granted, it’s not like Cerrone was going to take Diaz down and submit him. Just ask Jim Miller.).
Then again, Cerrone is fresh off a brilliant performance against Jeremy Stephens, another hard-hitting but limited striker who poses many of the same threats as Guillard, at UFC on FUEL 3. Cerrone basically turned Stephens into ground meat in their three round, one-sided slugfest, but does anyone else feel he is making a fatal mistake by already setting his sights on another opponent with a guy like Guillard still in the picture?