Noons suspects Cerrone won't just stand with him - Mixed Martial Arts News

“I thought right away it’s a great matchup, great fireworks,” said Noons on the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “I’ve got a lot of respect for the guy as a fighter … . He’s very well versed. He’s a very well-rounded fighter. He likes to stand and bang, and he can mix it up anywhere.”

Noons had an undefeated streak for for over three years between with wins over Nick Diaz, Yves Edwards, and Jorge Gurgel, among others. However, he has struggled lately, going 1-4 his last five fights.

“I’m not making excuses for my losses, but the last five fights, the first loss was to Nick Diaz, which was a very close fight in a weight division which I don’t even fight in,” Noons said. “I did that for the organization because they asked me to. … I did lose to [Jorge] Masvidal, so we can say that’s a loss. Came back and won a fight after that, and then I fought Josh [Thomson] and he just laid on me like a human blanket. I kind of look at that like he was pretty scared to fight. I guess it wasn’t even really a fight, and then last fight, the judges gave it to [Couture]. Like I said, I’m not trying to make a lot of excuses, but it’s just kind of where the cards fell.”

In Noons’ view, the UFC brought him over from Strikeforce because he’s an entertaining fighter who deserved the nod against Couture.

“Stylistically, I believe I still have a lot of fights left,” said Noons. “I’m an exciting fighter. I think that has a lot to play in what the UFC decides. … I’m pretty confident that my style of fighting is pretty exciting and people like to watch it. That’s what the UFC likes. They like exciting fights and what people want to see.”

Donald Cerrone is known for an exciting style that has earned him $410,000 in 'of the Night' performance bonuses, but Noons is worried that "Cowboy" make try to avoid a stand up war.

“There’s only been one person that’s stood and banged with me,” said Noons. “It was Nick Diaz. I don’t know if that’s the smartest thing … . I train for every aspect of the game because it’s MMA. It might look like it’s going to be a standup war, but people want to put it wherever it’s going to be the most to their advantage. I feel like the biggest advantage for me is standing. He’s probably going to be wanting to take it anywhere, make my hands tired, make legs tired. I’m ready for wherever the fight goes. I think it’s going to be exciting anywhere.”

'Cowboy' Cerrone: Injury is just another shot of whiskey
'Cowboy' Cerrone: Injury is just another shot of whiskey - Mixed Martial Arts News
On his sprawling ranch outside Albuquerque, Cerrone has built his own little playground, complete with a garage full of motorcycles and ATVs, a barn full of horses, and a front yard full of livestock.

He also has a full-time job as a professional fighter, which Cerrone approaches with a zealotry driven by financial ambition.

He's done it as ferociously and as often as his body will allow, since that's the surest path to financial security as an MMA fighter, he said.

"My thing is, for instance on Saturday, all I've got to do is go out there and throw down, and if I do an extra good job, they might give me a $100,000 bonus," Cerrone said. "Usually they send you a bonus in the mail – a discretionary bonus – on top of everything else, too."

Those paydays do come at a price. Cerrone's fan-favorite style takes a toll on his body. When your financial well-being is tied to your willingness to make sure the night ends with blood on the mat, you can't afford to think too far ahead.

"Never have I thought, I'm going to be sore tomorrow," Cerrone said. "Being injured, that just means another shot of whiskey to me."