Phil Davis believes that if anything positive should be rewarded out of a challenge it's that you appreciate the hard work it took to prepare for it.
The former four-time NCAA Division I wrestler will face his next challenge in Rashad Evans this weekend at UFC on FOX. Evans is widely considered to be the perennial No. 1 contender for the light heavyweight title and one of the competitors at 205 pounds.
Davis spoke to Fighters.com about the matchup and said he couldn't be more excited to have the opportunity to compete on a larger stage at this point in his career.
“I am so excited about this fight,” Davis said. "I can not be any happier with how things are going so far. My teammates at Alliance have been a huge help in helping me prepare for Evans and what he brings to the table."
The transition from undercard to main-event status would feel anything but a gradual process for the 27-year-old. Davis is one of the division's highly touted prospects and has earned some credibility to his name after defeating a few formidable opponents such as Brian Stann, Alexander Gustafsson and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.
Most fans would agree that Davis will be meet his biggest test in Evans on Saturday night. But there are some fans who believe the 27-year-old can pull off the upset and immediately become a contender in the company's most stacked division.
While some fans are surprised at how fast he has ascended among the 205-pound ladder, there is no one more shocked than Davis himself.
“It makes you stop and think to yourself, ‘Wow is this really my life? Is this really happening to me?’ I realize how lucky I am," he said. "Being a wrestler I like to think we are some of the hardest workers in the sport and with hard work comes rewards.”
UFC on FOX 2 is live this Saturday night from the United Center in Chicago.