On February 12, Bobby Green put on what was one of the best performances of his 14-year MMA career, when he defeated Nasrat Haqparast by decision in the opening fight of the UFC 271 pay-per-view card.
‘King’ Bobby was reportedly enjoying his time off after the fight – and the all-you-can-eat sushi bar – when his manager, Jason House, called the lightweight scrapper to see if he was interested in stepping in to face Islam Makhachev in the main event of UFC Vegas 49. That call, according to Green, came five days ago.
Green’s first response to his manager’s question?
“I’m fat as sh*t,” Green recalled on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “I’m like 195 pounds and I gotta cut to 155?”
With that, Green, his manager, Makhachev and the UFC agreed the fight was a go at a catchweight of 160 pounds.
Makhachev is the No. 4 ranked fighter in the official UFC lightweight rankings. He is 21-1 in his career and on a nine-fight winning streak. The Dagestani’s most recent outing resulted in a first-round submission victory over Dan Hooker in October. His past three fights have all ended early via submission.
With Makhachev’s ranking and the fact he is on a long winning streak, Green knows the UFC didn’t think of him as the first fighter to step in on short notice.
“All those motherf-ckers [top-10 ranked lightweights] got the call first. I guarantee you. All those guys are pussies. They want to wait and pick their terms,” said Green. “All those guys are playing a weird game and holding their cards in and they wait for the right time to pull out their ace. No. Sometimes you gotta jump on it and take it the way it is and now I’m jumping over all you guys. Because why? You’re too pussy to take the opportunity.”
As for his approach to the fight, Green said he knows Makhachev is going to try to use his wrestling skills when the two meet. He said that’s fine with him. Green’s plan is to stop that from happening by using his fists.
“I want to show people I’m not crazy, I’m f-cking nuts… [I’m going to] get in there and do this sh*t, with the highest [ranked] guy in our f-cking division,” said Green. “I’m gonna walk in there like a gangster and punch that guy right in his f-cking face. I’m going to keep hitting him in his face until he goes down.”
As for the weight cut. Green said he’s already shed 20-25 pounds before his trip to Las Vegas. He leaves today.
UFC Vegas 49 takes place Saturday, February 26 at UFC Apex. The entire card streams on ESPN+.