For all the talk that has surrounded Nicco Montano being such a monstrous underdog headed into her title defense against Valentina Shevchenko, she is currently not even the largest underdog of the UFC 228 card. That honor would belong to Brandon Davis, who is currently listed as a +900 underdog against Zabit Magomedsharipov after stepping up to fill in for Yair Rodriguez, who was originally scheduled to face Magomedsharipov on the main card of Saturday’s event. It’s clear from Davis’s speedy acceptance of the opportunity to fill in for Rodriguez and also from the style of fighting he brings to every contest that he is not afraid to step in the Octagon with anybody. But when it comes to his scrap with Magomedsharipov, Davis’s mentality does not stop at “not being afraid.”’ In fact, Brandon Davis believes that he has found the ideal opponent for him in his Russian opponent:
“It’s the ideal opponent because I want to fight somebody that’s gonna strike with me,” Davis told UFC.com. “As far as the 11 days’ notice, that’s not ideal because you’re not in as good a shape as you could be if you had a full camp. But yeah, he’s unpredictable and he’s gonna change up what he does anyway, so we’re not gonna train for him; we’re gonna train for what I do. Of course we’ll look at some of the things he does, but we’re gonna focus on what I do and making the weight.”
With Brandon Davis making short-noticing look so easy, it raises the question, “Why doesn’t everyone else do it?”
“I know exactly why other people don’t go that route,” Davis began. “I feel like there’s benefits to both – they want to keep a good record and try not to lose and make sure they stay in the UFC. I don’t want to leave the UFC either and I don’t plan on losing this fight. I could lose it because Zabit’s a beast, there’s no doubt about that, but he can definitely lose this fight as well. I’m just gonna fight whoever they give me, and if they’re offering me a top guy, I’m not gonna turn it down.”
Davis then began to speak in the types of words Dana White likes to hear. Davis seemed to echo the rhetoric of Dana White after temporarily releasing Yair Rodriguez: if you aren’t in the UFC to be the best and to fight anybody, why are you here? If anything, Davis argues, fighting the toughest opponents faster is a shortcut to advancing in the promotion:
“I want to be the best, so eventually, if I was winning fights, I’d have to fight him anyway, so why not take a shortcut?” Davis asked.
Do you agree that Zabit Magomedsharipov is an ideal opponent for Brandon Davis?