Why did Mike Davis take UFC Tampa fight on four days’ notice? ‘I want to be Donald Cerrone’

TAMPA, Fla. – When Mike Davis received an offer four days before UFC on ESPN+ 19, he didn’t hesitate to accept it.

“Beast Boy” Davis (14-4 MMA, 0-1 UFC) steps into the cage for his second promotional appearance when he takes on Thomas Gifford (17-8 MMA, 0-1 UFC) at UFC on ESPN+ 19.

The event takes place Saturday at Amalie Arena. The card streams on ESPN+.

Davis, a Dana White’s Contender Series alumnus, had prepared for a fight on Sept. 28 at UFC Copenhagen. When his opponent, Danny Henry, had to pull out due to injury, Davis turned down a replacement opponent in order to mend some injuries of his own.

“Now here we are a few weeks later,” Davis told reporters, including MMA Junkie, on Thursday at media day. “Luck happened, I guess. I’m still in shape. I’m still decent enough in shape. I feel great, actually. A 155 opportunity came up, so I might as well take it.”

Davis indicated he wants to compete as much as possible in the future. The American Top Team lightweight walks around at approximately 165 pounds, so the weight cut isn’t as drastic as some of his fellow 155 pounders.

“I’m 161,” Davis said. “I’m not heavy at all. I got the call at 165. I don’t get heavy. … I want to be Donald Cerrone. You call me, I’m going to fight. I’m good. I’m good. I’m ready to go.”

Both Davis and Gifford lost their promotional debuts earlier this year at UFC on ESPN+ 8 in April. Davis was submitted by longtime UFC fighter Gilbert Burns with a second-round rear-naked choke. Gifford dropped a unanimous decision to Roosevelt Roberts.

During their first fight week, the two fighters met. Six months later, Davis expects to engage in a “friendship kind of brawl.”

“I know Thomas,” Davis said. “I met him in Fort Lauderdale. We fought on the same card, we debuted together, and he’s a great guy. I think it will be a friendship kind of brawl and then we’ll go have a beer afterwards.

“I’m gonna say he’s a grappler, but he likes to strike. That’s exactly me. I’d 100 percent say I’m a wrestler or grappler, but I will strike 100 percent. I won’t even try to take you down, so it’ll be an exciting fight.”

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