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UFC FN 27’s Perez: Extended Layoff “Made me Better”

Erik Perez

While there are several intriguing match-ups scheduled for tonight’s UFC Fight Night 27 card, including Condit-Kampmann II obviously, one “Fight of the Night” possibility is the bantamweight scrap between Erik Perez and Takeya Mizugaki.

Of course, Perez and his striking skills have impressed since he arrived in the UFC last year, evidenced by the fact he’s gone 3-0 in the Octagon. While Mizugaki has incurred a few losses during his run with the WEC and UFC, the rugged vet has won plenty of fans over with his toughness, boxing and aggressive approach (see his WEC 40 tilt with Miguel Torres for just one example).

Tonight’s bout is also interesting because it will mark the first time this year that Perez will fight, after a serious staph infection forced him to pull of UFC 159 in April. While some fighters might be concerned about cage rust, after going eight months without fighting, Perez recently told MMA that the time off was in fact beneficial.

“I feel really, really happy because I’m going to fight,” the 23 Perez said. “But going eight months without a fight, it made me better. I’ve been training a lot – particularly things I’m not used to doing. I’ve been working to be better in this eight months, so I’ll come back stronger and better.”

And as far as “El Goyito’s” thoughts on Mizugaki? And what he brings to the cage?

“Mizugaki is no joke, so I’ve been training hard for this fight,” Perez said. “If you want to be the best in the world, you need to fight the best in the world. Mizugaki is the best fighter (for me right now). He has a good name and has fought all the top guys in the division. So it’s a good chance to fight him and win. To fight for the title, I need to get into the Top 10.”

It should be a great fight. Stay tuned to MMA Convert for all your UFC FN 27 news and coverage.

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