Confidence is definitely one thing Tony Ferguson is not lacking.
The 32-year-old former Ultimate Fighter winner added Rafael dos Anjos to his current nine-fight win streak this past month, earning a decision over the ex-UFC lightweight champion.
Now, Ferguson (22-3) has his sights set on claiming the title of “pound-for-pound” king in the minds of everyone – because in his own, he is already there.
“It’s already a reality. I’m already in title contention. I’ve got these guys in a chess match and I’m calling three moves,” he said during an interview with Submission Radio. “The lightweight title will be mine, but I’m looking for multiples and I am looking for that best pound-for-pound spot.
“Getting that best pound-for-pound spot will mean that I do have multiple titles around my waist. I’ve never been much for the accolades and for the trophies and for the merits because at one time in my life I kind of got board of all those. Wrestling these tournaments every single weekend and getting a medal just for like going out there and competing, and I just started throwing them in a box. I don’t want that to happen. I don’t want that title to come to my hands and be like, “nah, I don’t feel like it was deserved or it wasn’t earned or whatever” – not saying that any of my accolades weren’t, but I want it to be special. I want it to be super special and just super dope, and even if it’s not special to everybody else, at least it is to me.
“And honestly, I don’t fight for anybody else besides myself and my family, so therefore I win. If anybody wants me to go for the title and they’re telling me that, I’m gonna go the complete opposite way. Just in this fight game and in the fact that that’s what everybody else is doing. I’m not a follower, I’m a leader. I don’t ever try to follow anybody’s lead. I try to pave my own path. That way, it’s trial and error, man. Sometimes you don’t have a blueprint to pave the path that you’re given.”
Ferguson, who holds wins over Edson Barboza, Josh Thomson and Abel Trujillo since a loss to Michael Johnson back in 2012 via decision, added that making featherweight is something he can easily do.
“This last fight camp I had no nutritionists help. I did my own thing and I did it really well,” he said. “Like I said, I had to get away from all the bullshit and really get back in tune with my own self and my family, where my head was at and finding the fun back in this sport. Because when you stop having fun in this sport, the weight cuts become harder and everything else becomes harder. When I’m having fun, I’m doing the salsa dance inside the cage, I’m throwing some different kind of combos, my feet are there. You know, I feel my feet underneath me, I’m not slipping on some stupid stickers, I’m doing my homework on all this stuff. I’m actually taking this a little bit more serious than I did before. I’m having more fun with it. You know, it’s not becoming that wrestling thing where I used to throw my medals inside the box anymore. I’m having fun with this where I want to start experimenting with my moves again and start coming up with new things, not just a Imanari roll – by the way, EA Sports needs to update my rankings on my shit too (laughs). So that I start throwing some superman punches off the cage too. Just take some notes.
“What I’m trying to do is change the game. Not a lot. Just enough so people notice it and the up-and-coming people try to beat whatever I’m doing. They’re going to go out there and try to double up on what I’m doing and keep me competitive. Because those are the guys that are really keeping us competitive, not these guys at the top.”