Jared Cannonier Looks to Launch Rise at UFC 208

Jared Cannonier Looks to Launch Rise at UFC 208

Jared Cannonier will look to launch to the next level of his career when he faces Glover Teixeira at UFC 208.

Feb 11, 2017 by Tony Reid
Jared Cannonier Looks to Launch Rise at UFC 208
UFC Light Heavyweight Jared Cannonier spends his work days ensuring the safe travels of airline passengers as an Airway Transportation Systems Specialist. When the long shifts end he changes his focus and ensures the grounding and pounding of anyone who dares to stand across from him inside the Octagon.

Cannonier has the next name on his fight itinerary as he steps back in action this weekend at UFC 208 in Brooklyn, New York. He faces the most difficult challenge of his career when he lets his hands and feet fly in the direction of former UFC Light Heavyweight title challenger and knockout specialist Glover Teixeira.

“I couldn’t be more excited to have an opponent, especially one the caliber of Glover.” Cannonier said. “I am excited for the challenge. I get to fight one of the most well rounded fighters in the division. I am happy to put myself to the test. I am going to do everything I can to come out on top.”

When two big, strong, heavy handed men with a history of violence have a fight date set everyone in the community anticipates a firework filled scrap where the judges’ scorecards won’t be needed. With only two of his ten professional fights making it to the final bell, Cannonier fights as if his car is double parked in front of the arena.

He understands his impressive track record has fans excited but he plans on using a far more cerebral approach once the Octagon door shuts Saturday night.

“I think it’s going to be a standup and striking chess match.” Cannonier said. “I can’t be reckless in there with a guy like Glover because he will knock me out. I have to be smart. I have to pick my spots. Fools rush in and I can’t do that type of thing. I have to be careful but I can’t be timid, either. I just need to fight intelligently and pick my shots. I need to do everything I can to make him open up. I need to be the matador.”

The Anchorage, Alaska resident has openly said that although he is ready and willing to throw hands and make it entertaining for spectators, he is not one to simply stand and bang. He looks beyond his active fighting career and envisions a long and healthy life with his young family away from the cage once his time in fight sports has passed. This big picture mentality has him focused on fighting smarter and not harder.

“That is the case with most fighters in the UFC. They are some of the best fighters in the world. You just can’t do that stuff. I want to preserve my brain. I have a family that I want to be able to watch grow up. I don’t want to go in there and take shots to give shots.”

A convincing win Saturday night over the highly touted Teixeira would catapult Cannonier toward the upper echelon of the stacked light heavyweight division. He would most definitely find a smaller number next to his name in future UFC rankings. That fact would also lead to larger opportunities and household name future opponents. He takes all that with a grain of salt and is only concerned when the number next to his name becomes very small.

“A win over Glover will put me in the top fifteen, if I’m not there already. I don’t watch the rankings too much. Once you get into the top ten it becomes more important. A win over him will give me a boost in rising through the ranks.”

With all that being said, one might think Cannonier has a wish list or at the very least a handful of top ten fighters in mind as potential future opponents.  As usual, the entertaining and engaging light heavyweight insists that is not quite the case.

“Absolutely not.” Cannonier said. “The last time I asked for a potato, an easy fight, and they gave me Glover. They must have thought I was joking. I don’t care who I fight. A fight is a fight. It doesn’t matter who it is. Give me a flesh bag and I will punch it and kick it and do whatever I can to it to get my hand raised at the end of the day.”