UFC Fight Night 108's Artem Lobov: If you never risk, you never drink champagne

NASHVILLE Featherweight Artem Lobov said he could have chosen a lesser opponent to fight at UFC Fight Night 108, but he chose Cub Swanson.
“I wanted to risk it all, because if you never risk, you never drink champagne,” Lobov (13-12-1 MMA, 2-2 UFC) told MMAjunkie.Those betting on a Lobov win could afford some bubbly should he pull off the upset on Saturday in the FS1-televised headliner at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Swanson (24-7 MMA, 9-3 UFC), the No. 6 fighter in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA featherweight rankings, is a 7-1 favorite heading into the bout.
This past December at UFC 206, Swanson dazzled fans with a “Fight of the Year” candidate against Dooho Choi at UFC 206, which led critics to question why he got booked opposite Lobov in the first place.
More than a few fans have criticized the 30-year-old Russian’s main-event status, and they have strong ammunition. He lost his first fight on “The Ultimate Fighter 22” and was brought back by his longtime training partner and friend, UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor. He is 2-2 in the octagon and unranked in the division. A tie to McGregor, the promotion’s biggest star, appears to be his strongest career asset.
But like the Irish champ, Lobov relishes those who doubt his abilities. He said UFC fans discount his early career in Europe, where he frequently fought in hostile territory against local favorites. He’s happy to prove critics wrong.
“There’s nothing more motivating than having the doubters there, and there’s nothing sweeter than shoving it straight in their face,” he said.
And he plans to do that against Swanson, whose exciting and occasionally wild style presents an opportunity.
“He’s so wild, I can see myself catching him early,” Lobov said. “He gets hit in every fight. The last fight, it was a great fight, but he got hit a lot. And when you get hit by me, I just hope they’re able to wake him back up.”
Will a knockout over Swanson give Lobov the respect he desires? It’s doubtful he’ll immediately jump to the top, but he takes the long view on his conquest of the 145-pound division.
“The way I see it, when it’s all said and done, there’s going to be a mountain of corpses behind me, and gold around my waist,” he said.
Check out the video above for more from Lobov ahead of his fight with Swanson.And for more on UFC Fight Night 108, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.











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