We’ve seen Conor, we’ve seen Bisping, we’ve seen Paddy, but Paul Hughes says the Cage Warriors 134 main event will be the biggest fight in Cage Warriors history.
The first time Hughes and Jordan Vucenic met, they weren’t even able to reach co-main event status. But the two went to the deepest of trenches in a war that stole the show on a Morgan Charriere card.
The headlines were split into thirds. 1/3 focused on the contender for Fight of the Year, 1/3 focused on Charriere, 1/3 focused on the controversial decision that saw Vucenic get the win over Hughes. As Hughes recalls, Vucenic himself was surprised.
“I absolutely won that fight,” Hughes said. “I think that’s also why this is so entertaining. At the time, it was so controversial. Online people were going crazy. Not just Irish people, but Cage Warriors fans in general. The majority of people think I won the fight. Jordan believes we won the fight. I remember in the cage after he said to me, ‘I thought you nicked that one.’ That was his exact words.”
Not only will Hughes be out to take back his only loss, after he and Vucenic both defeated Charriere, the title of undisputed kind of Cage Warriors will be on the line. You can bet right now that the moment won’t be too big for Hughes, who’s got blood in his eyes.
“What I’m going to do in March is steamroll him,” Hughes said. “It’s a different animal that’s coming in there this time. I will steamroll him and I will make it undeniable that I need that UFC contract after this.”
Hughes doesn’t view their first fight as a loss at all. He explains that nobody in their right mind could call it a loss. Nobody has treated it as a loss and, as far as he’s concerned, he’s still undefeated.
What does that mean for Vucenic? If Hughes wins this one, there will be no trilogy.
“Once I put him to sleep, I’m going all the way to the UFC,” Hughes said. “That’s where I belong and where I’ve always strived to be. In my eyes, I already won the world title and this is going to be my defense. After that, I’ve taken out all the best in Europe. I’ll be 10-0 in my eyes, and I’ll have nothing left to prove.”
Deep into camp at this point, Hughes is training as hard as he’s ever trained before. With everything he feels he proved to himself and the fans in the first fight and the following fight with Charriere, Hughes feels his best is better than anything Vucenic can bring.
Hughes has no ill-will toward his opponent personally, but he feels there’s a lot to prove in this fight and there’s nothing Vucenic can do to stop him, no matter where the fight goes.
“I feel like I’m better than him in every single aspect to be completely honest,” Hughes said. “That doesn’t mean that I take him lightly; I’ve been in there with him before and I know he’s a fantastic fighter. I know he’s a dog and he’ll go the five rounds hard. I’m well aware of that but, as mentioned, I’m a different animal coming in here this time and he’s absolutely getting finished.”
He's already had Fight of the Year honors twice and he’s calling his shot now for KO of the Year. Can Vucenic derail Hughes’ route to the UFC? We’ll find out on March 18!
Catch the replay of Jordan Vucenic vs Paul Hughes 1 and catch what may be the biggest rematch in Cage Warriors history by signing up TODAY for UFC FIGHT PASS!