Christian Morecraft is big, but UFC on Versus 4's Matt Mitrione has seen bigger | MMAjunkie.com
PITTSBURGH – As far as MMA heavyweights go, hard-hitting Christian Morecraft is a big one.
But compared to the guys who formerly tried to take his head off, Matt Mitrione (4-0 MMA, 4-0 UFC) said the 265-pound Morecraft (7-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) actually is on the small side.
So as the NFL vet prepares for his main-card bout at Sunday's UFC on Versus 4 event, he's paying little attention to the weapons that made many of Morecraft's former opponents shudder in fear.
"You have to remember my old career was in the NFL," Mitrione told MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | MMAjunkie.com) at Friday's open workouts for UFC on Versus 4, which takes place at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh. "It's funny. A lot of times you hear, 'Oh, he's so big.' But Morecraft is a normal-sized human being to me. I'm used to people that are 6-foot-8 and 335 pounds. So a 6-foot-5, 270-pounder? OK."
So from a sheer size standpoint and in his slimmed-down state, Morecraft, who once tipped the scale at 360 pounds, isn't bringing anything to the table Mitrione hasn't seen in the NFL. Or in recent wins over the likes of Joey Beltran and Tim Hague. Or even in his training sessions.So when did Mitrione actually realize he had the talent to compete at the top level?
"The day I started," he said matter-of-factly. "I hope that doesn't sound arrogant. Well, I guess it does since it's me."
However, if that weren't the case, he never would have taken up fighting anyway.
"I have a lot of confidence in myself, especially when it comes to athletics and the mental side of anything," he said. "I've always felt like that. I wouldn't have gotten into [MMA] if I didn't."