With Bellator Fighting Championships' season-six programming bleeding into the broadcast of the recently launched "The Ultimate Fighter: Live" series, Bellator lightweight Lloyd Woodard knows there's a chance some people might tune out before his Bellator 62 scrap with Patricky "Pitbull" Freire.
Woodard advises against making that mistake.
"It's been a long time, but I'm going to go out there, and I'm going to do what I do best," Woodard told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio
). "I'm going to give Bellator a really great show and everybody tuned into 'The Ultimate Fighter' are going to miss out on a really good show."
Woodard and Freire are two of the eight lightweights who compete in opening-round bouts at Friday's Bellator 62 event, which takes place Laredo Energy Arena in Laredo, Texas. The evening's main card airs on MTV2.
Woodard made his Bellator debut in the promotion's season-four lightweight tournament, earning a TKO win over Carey Canier before falling short in the semifinals against the man who would go on to claim the company's 155-pound title, Michael Chandler. Woodard has been sidelined since then with a knee injury, but he insists he's now back to full strength.
"My knee is 100 percent better," Woodard said. "I just had a medial meniscus surgery right after my fight with Chandler. That's why I haven't had any action as of late. So I'm super-excited to get back in there."
In Freire, Woodard faces a dangerous Brazilian slugger who also lost to Chandler in the company's season-four tourney. However, Freire has since bounced back with a 50-second knockout of UFC veteran Kurt Pellegrino. Woodard knows his opponent has developed a reputation as an explosive striker, but he's willing to return fire.*
"This fight is going to be fireworks," Woodard said. "Everybody knows that I come out to scrap. He comes out to scrap. He's big, flashy knockouts. I'm looking forward to trying to knock his block off.*
"I've trained really hard for this fight, and I'm super-ready. I'm in the best shape I've ever been."
As with all of Bellator's tournaments, a title shot is on the line in the promotion's season-six lightweight tournament. Both Woodard and Freire fell short in their first bid for tournament glory, but "Cupcake" believes he's much better prepared the second time around.
Matched up with "Pitbull" in the opening round, Woodard said he's ready to put on a show.
"There is definitely going to be a finish," Woodard said. "I want to say TKO in the third just because we hit each other so many times in the face that one of us just can't get hit in the face anymore. That's what I think is going to happen, and that's what I'm looking forward to.*
"I'm looking forward to throwing a lot of hands and putting on a really entertaining and in my mind, I want it to be a one-sided fight, but in the end, it's going to be exciting no matter what."