Donald Cerrone, according to his coach, tried to get himself in as a late-replacement for Yancy Medeiros when he pulled from his UFC 226 matchup with Mike Perry.
There are some things in life that are complete certainties. The sky is blue, water is wet, and Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone will fight any man, in any place at any given time.
Just over a week removed from his unsuccessful but competitive effort against Leon Edwards at UFC Singapore, it has emerged that Cerrone attempted to insert himself into a matchup with welterweight brawler Mike Perry following his original opponent’s withdrawal from their UFC 226 matchup.
It’s a commonly known fact that Cowboy is about as game a fighter as you can get. Sometimes it even works against him but win, lose, or draw – the fans appreciate athletes who are in it for the sheer thrill that comes with the in-octagon violence. Cerrone embodies that notion perhaps more than anyone.
Coach Brandon Gibson spoke to MMAFighting about the illness his fighter fought through in the leadup to his UFC Singapore outing last week – something that he claimed was a factor in his performance on the night.
“Friday morning after weigh-ins he ate a little bit and he didn’t feel good. Then Saturday he was feeling really ill, he hadn’t drank much, he couldn’t hold anything down. He was genuinely ill [but] we got to the arena and he was like, ‘Let’s cowboy up and do this.’
“He was actually starting to vibe in the warm-up room. I could tell he wasn’t feeling good but was doing his best to get in that mindset. He was gonna go out there and compete.”
According to Gibson, Cerrone was fully committed to cutting his rest period short and stepping in for the injured Yancy Medeiros at UFC 226, but unfortunately, his request was denied given the fact that he is still under medical suspension.
Lightweight Paul Felder took the call instead and will face off against the very dangerous Mike Perry on the UFC Fight Pass prelims but according to his coach, Donald was feeling more than up to the task.
“He’s feeling great. If the fight would have been a day or two later or earlier it probably would have been a much better window to see him perform closer to his best. But that’s not how things get to shake out in the sporting world some days.
“He got the phone call to fight Mike Perry and he said yes. He’s under a medical suspension right now so it’s kind of off the table. His son hadn’t been born yet. Lindsey was probably having contractions.
“They were at the hospital and he was like, ‘Hey, do you have time to do this? I’m feeling good. I’m ready. I just came off an awesome camp. Mike’s been training out of JacksonWink but no hard feelings. Let’s go put on a show. I’ll step up.’”
While we all appreciate Cowboy on a regular basis, it is hard to see him risking his health like this and with his current slump in form and advancing age, perhaps it was better that this one didn’t exactly work out – a sentiment Gibson seems to agree with.
“I don’t want him fighting five times a year. I think those days are over, but he’s always gonna be that, ‘I’ll fight anyone, anywhere, anytime’ kind of guy. Some of these, you’ve just got to get up and ride with ‘Cowboy.’ That’s the life he’s gonna live.”
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena