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Roy Nelson not looking to be “Little Country”

Winner of The Ultimate Fighter, Roy Nelson has heard all the talk of his weight being an issue for an MMA athlete from everyone to online fans to Dana White. Yet, with a possible career-defining match against Mirko “CroCop” Filipovic on the horizon, Nelson isn’t thinking about changing his ways at all.

For his upcoming fight, “Big Country” enlisted the help of his last opponent and close friend, Frank Mir, to prepare him. Mir, a former UFC heavyweight champ, defeated “CroCop” back in 2010, so he knows a thing or two about fighting the Croatian. Nelson and Filipovic will meet at UFC 137 on October 29.

“This one actually just fell in place. He was a southie, (like) ‘CroCop’, and me being a good jiu-jitsu guy, like (Antonio Rodrigo) Nogueira, so it was just a perfect fit,” said Nelson, in a recent interview with NBCSports. “There’s nothing strange about it. I think everybody in MMA, paths always cross, especially if you’ve been in this sport as long as we both have.”

Nelson feels like his weight is not an issue, saying, “Everybody always talks about my weight, but that’s throughout my whole entire life. It’s nothing new. I’m sure everybody is going to talk about my weight next week, and then after my fight, and them my weight after that. It’s just because people are mean.”

It would be safe to assume “Big Country” hasn’t lost his sense of humor either, another thing White wasn’t too pleased with after Nelson’s loss to Mir. Still, don’t expect him to change any time soon.

“To me, I look in the mirror every day, my wife things I’m beautiful, so I’m going to say probably not (look different),” Nelson said. “I hope I just perform better. Looks are in the eye of the beholder.”

Nelson has lost his previous two fights, to Mir and Junior dos Santos, dropping his record to 15-6. “CroCop” is also on a two-fight losing skid, having fallen to Mir and Brendan Schaub. He is 27-9-2 overall.


Mir, meanwhile, will face Nogueira in December at UFC 140 in Toronto.