The Fighting Life: Joe Lauzon (Part 2)

With Lauzon still in the glow of his victory over Guillard at UFC 136, another contender on the rise sought him out. Former WEC champion Anthony Pettis, fresh off his win over Jeremy Stephens, put his bid on the table to get Lauzon in the Octagon. Once again, Lauzon accepted and will meet Pettis in February.

“I didn’t get a negative vibe from Pettis when he called me out. I also didn’t think it was that disrespectful when Melvin did it. I think Melvin was looking at me as more of a victim, whereas Pettis is looking at me as an opponent. I definitely don’t feel disrespected by Anthony calling me out. I think it’s a good fight.

“I think it will be exciting fight. Pettis is super entertaining. He is all over the place and has good boxing, jiujitsu and wrestling. He’s good everywhere. Those are the kind of guys I want to fight. I would much rather step in there against a guy like Anthony Pettis, who is dangerous all day long, over a wrestler who is not dangerous but will try to take me down and hold me there for three rounds. I don’t mind fighting dangerous guys when they are exciting. I think it sucks when you fight someone who only wants to take you down, grind you out and wait for the clock to tick down. Some people want to win that way but that is not me.

“We have a crazy division at 155 but I think over the next six months it is going to calm down. All of these badasses are going to have to fight each other and it will cut the division in half. I have to stay in that upper half because everyone is gunning for that title shot.”

While Super Bowl weekend is still several months away, things continue to come up roses for Joe Lauzon. He was recently awarded one of the UFC’s initial Twitter bonuses for his presence and participation in social media. UFC President Dana White has stressed the need for fighters to be active in interacting with fans – an avenue Lauzon has mastered for years.

“I’ve been at it for awhile,” Lauzon explained about social media. “If you go back to when I first started fighting on the local MMA circuit, I was networking even then. Local MMA shows have never done well because they could bring in awesome fighters but early on, nobody knew who the best fighters were. They could bring in Jeremy Horn, who at the time was on top of the world, but nobody knows who he is. Now if you bring in some local kid who trains in his garage for three months and he has eight million friends, they all come to watch him fight and he’s the fan favorite. People know him and have a connection to him. That’s why I went on The Ultimate Fighter because you are exposed to an audience and they have a connection to you.

“I have tons of people on Twitter who I’ve never met in my life but I’ve sent so many messages back and forth, I feel like I know them. I think it’s really cool. I started on MySpace and would get thousands of messages. I can type fairly quickly so I would respond to all of them. Granted, it would take me a week and I put in some good time but I got back to all those people. I feel like if you do that you will make a fan for life. Social media is definitely a powerful thing.”

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