Marlon Vera has provided a very unflattering appraisal of the man he just knocked out at UFC San Diego.
Vera is now riding a four-fight win streak after finishing Dominick Cruz in their main-event bantamweight bout. “Chito” looked poised throughout the fight, calmly absorbing Cruz’s many blitzes and responding with a series of well-timed, powerful strikes. In the fourth round, Vera unleashed a perfect head kick that caught Cruz flush, knocking out the former champ.
Many believed that Cruz’s tricky movement within the Octagon would cause problems for Vera. But the 29-year-old never looked flustered by Cruz, and at the UFC San Diego post-fight press conference, he explained why. Vera said that prior to the fight, him and his team had developed a very unflattering view of Cruz’s fighting ability.
“Honestly, me and my team think the way he fights is kind of like very low-level,” said Marlon. “There’s no base, there’s no good stance. All that movement side to side…we told each other, we have to kick this guy’s arse. But by saying that, you put a lot of pressure on yourself. I just believe that his stye is not the best for MMA, maybe for boxing it works better, but for MMA you have way too many weapons.”
Vera Reveals How A Photo Inspired His KO
Having previously defeated Davey Grant, Frankie Edgar and Rob Font, the #5-ranked bantamweight Vera now seems poised to take on the best of the division next. And part of the reason he’s surged through the rankings is his coach, Jason Parilllo.
Vera explained that Parillo had prior to the fight identified a quirk of Cruz’s game that was rich for exploitation. Marlon was simply sent a photo of Cruz dipping his head during his last win against Pedro Munhoz, and with that, he knew exactly what to do to get the win.
“Six days ago my coach sent me a picture of [Pedro] Munhoz kicking him in the body and his head was dipping,” said Vera. “He don’t say anything, he don’t say a sentence, he just sent me the picture and I was like ‘OK, I know what you’re talking about.’ And in the third round, in between he told me ‘Punch in the air, have him dip and throw a [head kick].’ I listen good to coach, you know?”
What do you think of Marlon Vera’s scathing critique of Dominick Cruz’s fight style?