UFC featherweight Chad Mendes will enter his clash tonight against Cody McKenzie with mixed emotions. On one hand the 11-1 Mendes is part of an epic event featuring the retirement of legendary light heavyweight Tito Ortiz in addition to the much-anticipated rematch between Anderson Silva-Chael Sonnen. On the other, he’s facing an opponent who is 1-2 in his last three fights.
“I am super excited to be part of such a great card. Whether I’m fighting on the television portion or the undercard it’s something that is going to be super cool to be part of,” explained Mendes. “I was actually lucky enough to be part of the one and only WEC PPV that took place in Sacramento and that was a lot of fun and something I am so proud of. Everyone is obviously looking forward to the main event and watching Tito’s last fight. It’s going to go down in UFC history and I feel very lucky to be part of it.”
The 27-year old’s disposition changed some, however, when the topic of his own bout came up.
“To be honest this is a fight that kind of sucks,” said a frank Mendes. “I don’t have a lot to gain, but there’s a lot for me to lose in this fight. If I win I’m supposed to beat him and if I lose then people are going to ask what happened.”
Then again, just because Mendes isn’t necessarily excited about the match-up doesn’t mean he’s underestimating McKenzie.
“I’m training for this fight the same way I did for Aldo,” stated Mendes. “I’m taking this very serious and I know I really need the win. I will never underestimate anyone; I learned that lesson a long time ago. I’m gonna go in there and do what I do best.”
Fans can catch their fight on tonight’s preliminary portion of the card set to be broadcast on FX starting at 7:00 PM EST.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC