Roy Nelson isn’t picky about who he steps inside the Octagon with.
The former Ultimate Fighter winner has competed against the likes of Fabricio Werdum, Junior dos Santos, Frank Mir and Andrei Arlovski, posting a respectable 19-7 record overall.
Now, after injuries hit UFC 161 hard, “Big Country” will step in on short notice and face Stipe Miocic next Saturday in Canada. And, while Miocic isn’t a Top-10 fighter like Nelson, he’s the one that signed on the dotted line.
During a pre-fight conference call with media members earlier this week, Nelson pointed out that he was told Daniel Cormier and Travis Browne each turned down the opportunity face him.
“They went down the list,” after Cormier and Browne said no,” Nelson said. “Stipe was already on the card, and Stipe is the one that said yes.”
Nelson will be competing in his final contracted fight, but doesn’t seem focused on anything but securing another finish in Winnipeg.
“On any given day, I know I can knock anybody out,” he said.
Cormier cleared up any confusion on his end, telling “UFC Tonight” that he was not medically cleared to compete at UFC 161 and that is why he didn’t accept the bout. He added that his initial plans were to challenge either Fabricio Werdum or Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, but that he now wants to face Nelson so that he can “kick his ass. Not only for me, but for Dana White.”