Tyron Woodley is focused on one thing and one thing only heading into UFC 209: Stephen Thompson.
Plenty of fans and fighters have had their say on the UFC’s bizarre middleweight championship matchup between Michael Bisping and Georges St-Pierre, but welterweight champ Tyron Woodley is remaining tight-lipped.
That’s because Woodley, 34, knows how easy it is to get distracted and start thinking about other potential opponents on the eve of his championship rematch against Stephen Thompson at UFC 209.
‘The Chosen One’ says he lost his focus against Rory MacDonald — a fight he lost via unanimous decision at UFC 174 — because he was thinking about fighting the winner of the 2014 number one contender’s bout between Robbie Lawler and Matt Brown.
He won’t be making the same mistake again.
“Don’t ask me about GSP. Nobody ask me about GSP and [Michael] Bisping. That [expletive] happened to me when I was fighting Rory [MacDonald] the first time,” Woodley said at a media day in Las Vegas on Wednesday, per Damon Martin of FOX Sports. “Talking about Matt Brown and Robbie Lawler, my focus left that fight and I didn’t show up to work that week.
“So if you ask me that question, I apologize but I will not answer. ‘Wonderboy’ is a tough opponent, he deserves my respect and he deserves my attention. That’s the fight I signed for, that’s the fight I’m doing this weekend, so unfortunately, I will not answer any questions on GSP and Michael Bisping.”
Woodley, who captured the 170-pound title after starching Lawler in the first round at UFC 201, went up against ‘Wonderboy’ in his first title defense. After a gruelling five rounds, which saw both men have their moments of success, the fight was declared a draw. ‘T-Wood’ still walked away with the belt and will have a chance to prove himself as the better man when he rematches Thompson at UFC 209.
The pay-per-view, which features Woodley vs. Thompson as the main event, takes place this Saturday, March 4, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.