When Luis Pena was forced off TUF 27 due to injury, some questioned if Mike Trizano – who ended up winning the lightweight tournament – was in fact the best 155-pound fighter on the show. Trizano put to rest any arguments of that this past Saturday as he defeated Pena by split decision at UFC Fight Night Denver. Following an underwhelming UFC debut in July which saw him take home the TUF 27 crown, Trizano put on an exceptional performance against “Violent Bob Ross” and he said part of that came from his fellow Tiger Schulmann teammates winning the week before.
“All three of those guys the weekend before [at UFC 230]. Shane [Burgos] with his big win, Lyman [Good] with his big win, Julio [Arce] even though he lost was in an unbelievable fight. It put fire in me man. I just wanted to go out there and do my thing. Leading up to all our fights it was really one of the first time where everybody was kind of fighting in the same time span. The gym was electric, the energy was on full blast. It was awesome to see everyone do really well. I was excited to cap it off.” Trizano told MMANews in an exclusive interview.
Trizano (8-0) also made sure his preparations for the fight were on point. This meant heading down to Denver weeks before so he could adjust to the elevation. Luckily for the 26-year-old he had that connection with Factory-X head coach Marc Montoya who was part of The Ultimate Fighter 27 coaching staff for Stipe Miocic. Trizano said that extra training paid dividends and didn’t rule out a return to Factory-X in the future.
“As soon as I found out about fighting in Denver I knew right away I had to adjust to that altitude. I knew that Marc Montoya had his gym out there, he was one of my coaches on [The Ultimate Fighter]. As soon as I found out I messaged Marc a couple of months ago. They even texted me before I texted them. They pretty much treated me like family there. I’m very thankful for them letting me come and be a part of their team for a couple of weeks. It was a good experience. They have a lot of good guys, I’d love go out there and train a little bit. They invited me back whenever I want to. I left the door open for them to come by us [at Tiger Schulmann’s].”
“The Lone Wolf” likes to do his talking in the cage which is why he opted to give a salute to the troops in his post-fight speech as opposed to calling out his next opponent. Saying that, Trizano does have an idea when he’d like to fight next and against what type of opponent.
“I’d love to be closer to home. I know [the UFC is] going to Brooklyn next. I’d love to try and get on [that card] but we’ll see. I’d love to get someone who wasn’t on [The Ultimate Fighter] get somebody who has a few UFC fights in. Again I want to climb the ladder, I want to make a spark in the division.”