Hidalgo, Texas – As the UFC® debut in Hidalgo, Texas approaches, here is what the stars of UFC FIGHT NIGHT®: POIRIER vs. JOHNSON had to say leading up to their Saturday night matchups:
Dustin Poirier: “I’m 27 years old, I’ve been in the game, fighting non-stop for nine years, this is my 18th appearance on the big stage and I’ve matured as a person. I’m a father now, I’m comfortable with who I am, not that I didn’t believe in myself before, but now I know. As I get older, I realize that fighting is my life, but I’m not all the way in like I was before. I was lost in it. It’s part of my life, but it’s not who I am. I’m a father, I’m a son, a husband. It’s part of who I am, it’s not who I am.”
Michael Johnson: “I’m really excited to be here in Hidalgo headlining the first card here. I’m just happy and blessed to be able to fight. My shoulders were really bad after the Diaz fight. It just means the world to be healthy and fighting a great opponent like Dustin. This is pretty much a do-or-die fight for me. I have to go in here and I have to put on a great performance. I can’t walk away with a [loss], it’s just not a question. My plan coming in to this promotion was to leave at the top of this promotion. I’m coming out with the win in this one.”
Uriah Hall: “It feels good [to be back]. I’ve fought a bunch of places, Australia, Japan and so far I like it here. Last year I fought five times and I trained through seven training camps. I’ve used this time [off] just to chill and see my family. The Anderson fight didn’t happen and I get you have to fight bigger names to get more money, that’s the way MMA is. People forget about the heart, the love, the passion. I’m one of those rare cases, I’m still here. Obviously I want to get back in there. I threw Brunson a bone and he took it.”
Derek Brunson: “[This fight] is personal; I really don’t like him. Just him running his mouth, being arrogant, being cocky – I joke and I play around, but I feel that he really believes what he says; I really don’t like that. I’m doing this for the fans too. For anyone to beat me in a fight, they’re going to have to get lucky. I’m well-rounded, fast and explosive. I work hard. I’m not saying they can’t get lucky, but they’ll have to get lucky. That’s all Uriah Hall has to rely on, to get lucky.”
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UFC FIGHT NIGHT®: POIRIER vs. JOHNSON will air live on FS1 at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on Saturday, Sept. 17, with the prelims kicking off the evening on FS1 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and on UFC FIGHT PASS® at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT.
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