Nam Phan likes how he matches up with Dennis Siver on the ground, but admits he might have to knock him down to get the fight there.
Ahead of the featherweight bout scheduled for Dec. 8 at UFC on Fox 5, Phan joined the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show to discuss his opponent and more.
On Siver: “He’s a buff guy. He looks like a freaking Ninja Turtle. All muscle, no neck.”
On Siver’s drop to 145 pounds: “Of course every fighter wants to fight for the title, and he probably didn’t think he could do that well at 155, trying to get a title shot. He probably thought that he could get a better shot at 145, but we’ll see.”
On his biggest advantage over Siver: “I think if it gets to the ground, I’ve got the bigger advantage against him technique-wise.”
On how he can take Siver down: “My favorite takedown’s probably the left hook to the body. The main way is knock him down and I can capitalize on that. When he fought Matt Wiman -- I have a lot of respect for Matt Wiman. That guy, I think he’s a very good wrestler, and Matt sometimes had a bit of a difficult time taking him down. I think the best thing for me to do is probably try to knock him down and then try to capitalize on him.”
On the Thanksgiving dinner he ate with a fight coming up: “It was pretty good. I had a tuna salad from Subway.”
On when he’s more nervous, before a fight or waiting on the decision: “The walkout. Walking to the cage. The anticipation in the cage. Aw man, that’s terrifying. I hate it. Right before Bruce Buffer [announces] your name, introduces the other guy -- for me, that’s the worst. I just want to fight.”
On when he mellows: “Right when we get into it. Right when the bell rings. Good, let’s go. Let’s get it over with. I’m not even nervous anymore. I’m like, OK, let’s flow.”
On waiting to hear he’d won a split decision over Cole Miller in his most recent fight: “First, I crapped my pants. Second, I was like, what the heck? How was that a split decision? I didn’t think that was a split decision at all. I didn’t think it was even close to a split decision. I thought I beat him every round.”
On the saying that fighters shouldn’t leave fights to the judges: “It’s so easy, right? Anderson Silva has not even finished all of his fights. Come on, that’s how hard it is. ... Are you serious? I should have finished him? Dude, I never thought about that. Why I would want to stay in there for 15 minutes, go to a decision, when I could just finish the guy in 10 seconds? That never came to my mind. I should just knock the guy out.”
Listen to the full interview (beginning at 26:04).