Jamie Varner’s first bout against Joe Lauzon was the UFC on Fox 4 “Fight of the Night,” and Varner would like to do it again in 2013.
“I want to start my retribution tour,” Varner told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Cheap Seats” show. “I want to start fighting the guys that I’ve lost to. First would definitely be Joe Lauzon. I’d really like to fight Joe again.”
Varner was not Lauzon’s originally scheduled opponent when they met last August. He was a late replacement for Terry Etim, and even though he didn’t get a full training camp for the fight, he did well. In the first round, he staggered Lauzon with a right hand and tried to force a stoppage on the ground. Lauzon survived, though, and outgrappled a tiring Varner in the second and finally finished him with a triangle choke in the third.
“I’m not going to take anything away from Joe,” Varner said. “Joe’s awesome and he had an amazing game plan for me. The fact that he broke me down so technically, to the littlest move, like my head position on my double leg, and was able to capitalize on it, that’s incredible. It speaks volumes about him as a fighter and as a technician. I definitely feel that if we were to fight again and I had a full training camp, I would win that fight. I think it would be different.”
Varner is 2-1 since returning to the UFC in May. Most recently he defeated Melvin Guillard via split decision on Dec. 29 at UFC 155. The fight had been scheduled for “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 15 finale two weeks earlier, but it was canceled after Varner fell violently ill in the locker room. Guillard attributed the cancellation to Varner being afraid.
“Melvin knew it wasn’t my decision not to fight. It wasn’t,” Varner said. “Joe Silva came into the bathroom when I was puking my brains out and told me that the fight was not going to happen. … It was Keith Kizer and Joe Silva that came into the bathroom and were like, ‘No, you’re done.’ That wasn’t my decision. The fact that [Guillard] turned it into a whole circus and got all emotional and got in my face, I don’t play that game no more. I got involved in that drama with Donald Cerrone, and that second fight with Donald, I fought out of pure emotion. I didn’t fight with any sort of tactical skill or anything. I just went out there and I fought him and he got the best of me.”
Varner didn’t make that mistake against Guillard. He learned from his feud with Cerrone, whom, it turns out, he would also like to fight again. At the moment, however, Lauzon tops his list.
“I have to earn that fight with Donald, but I think with Lauzon, that would be a fight that I could arguably fight right away,” Varner said. “It could be my next fight.”
Listen to the full interview (beginning at 1:06:38).