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Lineker promises new strategy in Font rematch, but will still ‘hit hard as usual’

John Lineker intends to surprise Rob Font at UFC Greenville.

John Lineker has made his name as a durable, hard-hitting contender in the bantamweight division. However, ‘Hands of Stone’ intends to show a new aspect of his fighting persona when he takes on Rob Font for the second time in UFC Greenville’s co-main event.

Victorious via unanimous decision when he first met Font back in May 2016, Lineker tells Combate he’ll fight a different battle from the one he won three years ago. But, that doesn’t mean Font shouldn’t still expect to be hit hard just as hard.

“I’m sure he improved, that he studied me a lot, but I’m focused. I trained hard to make him lose himself in his own strategy. I did something very different from the first fight, but he needs to watch out for my hands, because I’ll hit hard as usual. I hope my strategy works and I’m able to neutralize whatever he throws at me. I have no idea what he’ll do, but I’m ready and trained for this fight.”

In his last outing, Lineker (31-9) was defeated via split decision by Cory Sandhagen in a fight that set the 29-year-old back on his title run. However, after seeing fellow countrymen and contenders Pedro Munhoz and Marlon Moraes lose their last fights, the Brazilian feels like he might not be so far away from a crack at the belt.

“I think I took a step back after that loss, but I believe I’m not that far away. Especially because most athletes who were on their way had their chances. Marlon Moraes lost, Pedro Munhoz was close, but lost, too. I think I’m still in the mix. If I win two, three fights, tops, I should be right back on track. That’s what I want. And if God allows it, I’ll still bring that belt to Brazil.”

Before the loss to Sandhagen, in April, John Lineker was on a two-fight winning streak, with wins over Brian Kelleher and Marlon Vera. UFC Fight Night 154 takes place in Greenville, South Carolina, on June 22. The card is expected to be headlined by a featherweight bout between Renato Moicano and Chan Sung Jung.