UFC lightweight Joe Lauzon has made a name for himself as a “must see” fighter by racking up enough bonuses to put him just under Anderson Silva as the organization’s all-time leader in that department. Though skill-level certainly plays a big role in his success, Lauzon’s approach to competition is also one of the primary reasons for his plethora of extra paychecks.
Lauzon has a “go big or go home” attitude, looking to finish foes off even if it means increasing his own risk of being put away. As a result Lauzon has scored stoppages against all 22 of the opponents he’s beaten but has also been submitted or knocked out in six of his seven defeats. It’s a trade-off Lauzon is more than willing to make, as he recently made clear in a conversation with the UFC’s website.
“I think the big thing is that I’m not afraid to lose. I think some other guys are so concerned with not losing the fight that they don’t go for things and they play it safe. That’s just not me. No matter how big or important the fight was, it is really tough for me to lay off something that I thought was there,” explained Lauzon of his mindset entering match-ups. “Since I started doing jiu-jitsu, I’ve always went for things. I attack. In the beginning, I think I was attacking blindly a little bit, but over time I’ve done a really good job. Some people think I take crazy risks and things like that, but they’re very calculated risks. I make a split-second decision, but I’ve put myself in those kinds of situations all the time in training, so I have a pretty good idea if it is going to work out or not. Other people, they would play it a lot safer, but I don’t want to go out there and win by decision. I really don’t. I want to go out there and submit guys.”
“People talk all the time about how there are such discrepancies with judges, but there are no discrepancies with a knockout or a submission,” he continued. “When you go out there and finish somebody, you’re making a statement: ‘I’m the better fighter. That other guy gave up or I put his lights out.’ In a judges’ decision, you have to pick a winner because you’ve run out of time – it’s a logistics thing. There’s nothing clearer to me than tapping someone out or knocking someone out. If I’m going to train for months on end, I’m going to do my best so there is no question at the end. Sometimes that might end with me losing the fight, but I can say that I’m happy because I went for it. It would drive me crazy to play it safe and have all these wins go to decision. That wouldn’t be satisfying for me.”
The 28-year old’s next shot at a bonus will come this Saturday night when he faces Jim Miller at UFC 155. Interestingly enough, Miller has only been stopped a single time in his career, tapping out to Nate Diaz’s Guillotine Choke in a May meeting.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC