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UFC Nashville: Ellenberger: The idea of ‘pressure’ is more of a headline than an actual factor

UFC welterweight veteran Jake Ellenberger discusses why pressure stemming from lack of job security is not a factor and why he can understand the UFC’s position regarding Demian Maia not being a draw.

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UFC 184: Ellenberger v Koscheck Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

For many fighters that have experienced a rough patch in their career, the nagging fear of getting released can become a formidable opponent in its own right, but for UFC welterweight crowd-pleaser Jake Ellenberger, nothing is further from his mind. During a recent interview with Bloody Elbow’s Three Amigos Podcast, the “Juggernaut” discussed how the pressure of losing job security has no place in his thought process.

“To be quite honest, I don’t pay any attention to it. There’s the regular pressure of just having the fight itself—you could be fighting down the street in an underground fight club—because a fight is a fight, and there’s a unique set of circumstances that come with that.

At this level, it doesn’t play a role with me at all. This could be my last fight. I could be done tomorrow. You can only control what you can control. The media loves to bring up that “your back is against the wall” thing. ‘Oh, this could be it!’ Who cares? I don’t.

I consider it to be a privilege to do what I do. It’s an honor to be in the UFC and in the top echelon of welterweights. I love what I do, and as far as that creating or being pressure, I’d have to say it’s absolutely not. I think that idea is more of a headline than an actual factor.”

Demian Maia has been on a quiet tear through the welterweight division for the last three years, amassing an impressive 6-win streak. For fight fans that might be wondering why he hasn’t gotten a shot at the title yet, it stems from the UFC brass feeling that he isn’t a good draw, despite his many finishes. This is a sentiment that Ellenberger feels is a harsh reality in the sport.

“Demian Maia… Sure, he’s talented, but he’s not always the most exciting fighter. He’s great and has a very impressive skillset, but unfortunately, as far as paying him to be a pay-per-view title draw, that’s gonna have to be a no.”

You can listen to the rest of this great interview with Jake HERE at the 1:17:40 mark of the audio. Remember, if you're looking for us on SoundCloud or iTunes, we're under the MMA Nationname. Follow our Twitter accounts: Stephie Haynes, Three Amigos Podcast, Iain Kiddand Mookie Alexander or our Facebook fan page, Three Amigos Pod.