The former Bellator 185-pound champion debuts against Tim Boetsch at UFC 149, and even though a title shot might be in the offing if he successfully dispatches “The Barbarian,” his mind is firmly set on trouncing “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” (via MMAjunkie.com):
Saturday, I'm focused on this fight. And after that, I'm going to call Mark Munoz out. I'm focused on the fight, but I'm going to call out Mark Munoz after. That's my goal.
I'm going to make a statement no matter what. But after that, I'm going to beat up Mark Munoz.
He's been talking a lot of trash about me. I'm one of those fighters that I don't like to talk about any fighter. I'm focused on myself. When I see people that do the wrong things, I have to do something about it.
Prior to the Chris Weidman fight, Munoz had been staking his claim as the most deserved 185-pound combatant to contest “The Spider’s” crown. However, “The All-American” put paid to that via second-round KO, thus leaving his title aspirations in tatters.
“Lightning’s” gripe with Munoz stems from an interview he had with “The MMA Hour’s” Ariel Helwani (via MMAFighting.com). In the interview, he makes reference to the calibre of opponents Lombard had fought before signing with the Zuffa-based promotion.
In the kindest possible words, Munoz referred to them as cans.
Lombard, who is riding a mammoth 25-fight undefeated streak, was unwavering when asked whether he’d turn down a title shot against Silva in favor of Munoz.
“One hundred percent. You got it. I don't want to talk about it. I don't want to talk about him. I just want to fight him. I want to fight him bad.”
For a fighter to turn down an eventual tilt at UFC glory in order to throw hands with a guy who has slipped down the middleweight pecking order means one of two things—he’s mad or he’s on a mission.
Either way, it could spell bad news for Munoz.