Former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler will square off with Donald Cerrone on Saturday at UFC 214. It’s a clash of fan favorites which has been eagerly anticipated since the idea was initially floated for UFC 205 last November.
One of the few not hopping on this fight’s bandwagon, though, is Pat Miletich. The UFC Hall of Famer was Lawler’s first trainer in the sport and the duo remain friends to this day.
But Miletich doesn’t believe this is the right fight for the veteran at this stage of his career.
“Robbie will fight anyone,” Miletich said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “It’s up to the management to figure that part out and say ‘no, we’re not taking that fight. Not happening.’”
Miletich points out that Lawler went through a legendary run en route to the welterweight title. He won eight out of nine bouts, and was in the Fight of the Year a staggering three straight years: vs. Johny Hendricks in 2014, Rory MacDonald in 2015, and Carlos Condit in 2016.
“Robbie went through a two-year run of fighting constantly and beating the baddest dudes on the planet in that weight division. At a rate that was unbelievable. He was fighting the baddest dudes and beating people and having absolute wars with guys.”
Lawler then got knocked out by Tyron Woodley at UFC 202. And while Lawler will never say no to a fight, he believes management should have put the breaks on putting Lawler in with an opponent as dangerous as Cerrone in his return fight.
“You get done doing that and he finally gets to the Woodley fight and I said to Matt Hughes at the time and I said ‘Matt, make sure he gets out of that first round with Woodley, man.’ Because Tyron is so explosive early on in a fight that he can put anybody away. That’s a scary, scary man when he hits you solid or starts hitting doubles on you and stuff. Robbie didn’t make it out of the first round, he got clipped and put away. That was after that run he went through, the roller coaster for each camp and each fight, it’s very difficult on the mind and the body to do that, and it’s amazing that he pulled it off.”
Miletich is not saying Lawler is going to lose to Cerrone on Saturday. But in case it’s not already clear, this is not the fight Miletich would have chosen if it was his call
“Donald Cerrone is a dangerous guy. He’s proven to be dangerous over and over again. What does Robbie gain by beating him? If I’m Robbie’s manager, I would have never let that fight happen. I’m not saying Robbie’s going to get beat by him, but its just, Cerrone is a dangerous, dangerous dude. He hits hard. He kicks hard. He’s versatile. He’s great on the ground. The guy is no joke. He’s world class and he has been for years. He’s world class. If they had said, these are your choices, [I’d say] take Cerrone off that list right now. That’s a no-win situation.”
Source:: mma fighting