According to Slam Canoe, at a recent media conference call, Rashad Evans, the No. 1 contender to Jon Jones's 205-pound crown, told Phil Davis in no uncertain terms that he's going to smash him up when they throwdown in the main event at UFC on Fox 2.
Whilst the co-main event between Sonnen and Bisping has been making the rounds, the headline act featuring Evans and Davis has almost disappeared under the radar. Well, not any more.
Apparently the undefeated "Mr. Wonderful" (9-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) had implied that he could in fact derail Evans' title prospects.
"Let's get one thing straight, you aren't beating me," interjected Evans, who could be next in line for light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones. "It can't come fast enough. I'm going to smash you, dude. He isn't ready and he knows he isn't ready. When I look into his eyes, he isn't ready. You're just a boy."
"I was kind of thinking you shouldn't be too concerned about that title shot," Davis responded. "It's not going to be for a little while. You've got a little while before you can worry about a title shot. It's not going to happen this time around."
"We're going to see what happens when those lights hit you," Evans countered. "When you walk out and that crowd is roaring. We're going to see what kind of man you are. We're going to see what kind of fighter you are, because I know you aren't a fighter.
"When you get hit in the mouth, things change. When you got hit by Li'l Nog (Antonio Rogério Nogueira), you didn't know what to do. When I hit you in the mouth, you're going to feel it."
"Oh, that's scary," Davis sarcastically replied.
Evans (16-1-1 MMA, 11-1-1 UFC), the former light heavyweight champion, lost the title to Lyoto Machida in his first defense back at UFC 98. Since then, he's been on the road to redemption—he defeated both Thiago Silva and Quinton Jackson in his quest to vie for the belt once again.
Following his unanimous-decision win against Jackson, he was all but set to lock horns with then-champion Mauricio Rua; however, a knee injury put an end to that, and Jones, his training partner at the time, was instead given the title shot after upending Ryan Bader at UFC 126.
The rest, as they say, is history.
Evans was then scheduled to fight for the title at UFC 133, however, Jones pulled out after sustaining a hand injury.
He was next slated to face Davis at the aforementioned event, but that never came to fruition as the latter incurred a knee injury.
Instead, Evans took on and defeated the legendary Tito Ortiz at the same event to book a championship bout with Jones at UFC 140, but as fate would have it, a recurring thumb injury thwarted his hopes once again.
Evans now finds himself one fight away from a shot at recapturing the Holy Grail (which UFC president Dana White confirmed if he comes out victorious on fight night) that has eluded him not once but twice—all that is left, is to take care of business at the end of this month.
With that said, Davis, a former Penn State NCAA Division l All-American, seemed nonchalant with the idea of Evans contesting for the belt, but is also adamant, that will not be the case in a week's time.
"That actually works perfectly into my plans; I take a little rest and he'll fight for the title," Davis said. "Whatever happens with that—cool. I'm up next.
"After I beat Rashad on the 28th, they won't have anything to do with me other than fight (for the belt). Rashad is the true No. 1 contender, and after he loses, who is next (for me)? The champion."
Both combatants were giving the impression of unwavering confidence going into their matchup and thus continued their back-and-forth slanging match.
"Come one, come all—it doesn't matter who they put against me," Evans said. "I've got to beat them all the same, no matter what, no matter how they stack them up. If Phil is next in line, Phil is next in line. But the fact that this kid actually thinks he can beat me kind of bothers me now.
"Look, there are some people that will fight if they weren't getting paid to fight, and I'm one of those people. Phil is not one of those people."
"You're absolutely right; I'd be pushing a pen," Davis responded. "But since I get paid to fight, it looks like you're next."
"There's a difference with the mindset," Evans countered. "You're going to find out what that difference in mindset is...You can say what you want to over the phone, but once we get in that cage and you can't get out, we're going to see how you feel then."
"When I'm on top of you, I'm going to remind you with every shot what you said," Davis replied. "Remind you with every shot."
For additional information, follow Nedu Obi on Twitter.