UFC on FX 5′s Jay Hieron on Ellenberger: “I Taught Him How to Lose”
STUDIO MMA, RIVERSIDE, CA – After seven years away, Jay Hieron makes his long awaited return to the Octagon this Friday at UFC on FX 5. Hieron and his opponent Jake Ellenberger are no strangers, having met previously back in 2006 with Hieron taking a unanimous decision victory. The match-up was originally scheduled for the cancelled UFC 151 card, in which Hieron was replacing the injured Josh Koscheck.
The Las Vegas native bounced back from a close and controversial split decision to BFC welterweight champion Ben Askren, with a second round submission victory over Romario Manoel da Silva at (LFC) Legacy Fighting Championship 12 in July.
I’ve never had anything handed to me, and I’m glad it went this way,’ Hieron said. ”It is a shame UFC 151 got cancelled, as it would have been cool to fight in my hometown of Vegas, but I am just glad I’m going to fight in the UFC. I always believed I belonged in the UFC, that I was as good as the guys in the UFC.
It is tough, living in Vegas, living in the UFC’s home town, and seeing all these big cards all the time. I have cornered on big UFC shows and wondered when I would be back in the Octagon myself. I had people ask me if I was an amateur fighter, because why wasn’t I in the UFC? I’ve had great runs, beaten top guys, but it just wasn’t my time. I was either signed or I was injured, it just never worked out for me to come back to the UFC, but I never got deterred.
While it has been years since their first fight, Hieron still believes the outcome will be the same. Noting he knows Ellenberger very well, having cornered two teammates against him.
I couldn’t ask for a better comeback fight than Ellenberger. I beat him before, and I will beat him again. I fought him back in 2006 and he was a hot prospect, he didn’t know he could lose and I beat him on points. I know he’s super-tough, and a much different fighter with a ton of experience, but I know I can beat him again. I know him very, very well. I beat him in our fight and then I cornered Mike Pyle and Martin Kampmann against him. Jake’s last loss was to Martin and we spent a lot of time breaking down Jake’s style so Martin could take advantage of his weaknesses. I feel I know what Jake brings to the Octagon as well as anyone. I taught him how to lose.
(Photo via jayhieron.com)