Gleison Tibau is somewhat of an anomaly, a fighter on the cusp of breaking the record for the most fights in UFC history, yet he is relatively unknown by casual fans. When he steps into the cage on Saturday night at UFC 184 against Tony Ferguson, he will be looking to change that.
With 24 fights in the UFC thus far, Tibau has the most fights with the promotion out of any active fighter and is just 3 fights off equalling Tito Ortiz's all time record. Regardless of the amount of fights Tibau has had in the Octagon, he has yet to win 4 consecutive fights, which is something that has been playing on his mind in the build up to his fight with Ferguson.
Speaking to MMAFighting.com, Tibau said, "I'm breaking all my personal records in the UFC, and all I want now is my longest winning streak. I'm even more motivated because of this. I have a goal of becoming the fighter with most UFC fights, but I'm always respecting my body. I'm fighting for the second time in 2015 and we're only in the second month of the year, but I won't do that constantly. After this fight, I will have two more fights to do to reach Tito Ortiz and three more to surpass him and become the fighter with most bouts in the UFC. I'm happy with that, and I want to reach that goal this year."
Another common criticism that Tibau has faced in recent years has been that he has been unable to finish fights and while this is a valid criticism, Tibau doesn't necessarily feel at fault. He believes that while he's fighting the world's best, it will always be hard to get the finish.
"Critics don't bother me, but I know I have to win more fights by submission or knockout," he said. "Fans have to understand that that's the consequence of the fight, though. I'm fighting at the highest level, everybody knows what the other [fighter] is capable of doing so it's hard to surprise your opponent. In my last couple of fights, I rocked and knocked down my opponents, but couldn't knock them out. It happens. I always try to put on a show for the fans, but it's not possible to do it all the time."
While criticism of his inability to finish opponents hasn't bothered Tibau something else has, after 24 fights in the UFC, Tibau still isn't ranked in the top 15 and he believes a win over Tony Ferguson will earn him the spot in the rankings that he so desperately craves.
"I can't believe that with all the fights I have in the UFC, I'm not ranked," Tibau told MMAjunkie.com "Whoever wins will be ranked,I believe that whoever wins our fight will be well-ranked. That's what I believe."