With his first title defense less than a month away, EliteXC lightweight champion K.J. Noons (6-2) believes he is taking on his toughest challenge to date. Noons will square off against UFC and PRIDE veteran Yves Edwards (34-13-1) in Honolulu, Hawaii.
The June 14 event airs on Showtime at 10 p.m. ET.
Noons discussed the upcoming fight, the possibility of fighting outside EliteXC, his second career as a pro boxer and more while a guest on a recent edition of TAGG Radio (www.taggradio.com
), a content partner of MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
Despite being the organization's recently crowned champion, Noons will enter the fight as the underdog. It's a role the 25-year-old has been familiar with throughout his young career.
"I'm probably the underdog like I am in every fight, which is no problem with me," Noons said.
Despite being comfortable with the role, Noons admitted that the resurgent Edwards presents a stern test.
"That guy is very well rounded," Noons said of Edwards. "I don't see a weakness in his game."
Edwards brings a wealth of MMA experience into the match. Fighting professionally since 1997, the Texas native's resume includes nearly 50 fights. That wealth of experience puts Noons in another position in which he is quickly becoming familiar.
"You know, I've only fought six times in pro MMA," Noons said. "Out of the six guys I've fought, two of them have over 40 fights and another two have over 20, 25 fights."
While impressed with Edwards' history, Noons is not concerned.
"I'm going come in top condition and execute my game plan," Noons said
While not looking past this fight, the champion does have his eye on the future. With EliteXC seemingly interested in sharing their fighters with other organizations, as well as cross-promoting, there could be some interesting match-ups for Noons should he retain the belt.
"I definitely want to do champion against champion (fights) and branch out," Noons said. "There's a lot of great fighters in EliteXC. Once I get past them, I would love to go outside and do other organizations and test myself, test my skills."
Noons, who owns a professional boxing record of 7-1, plans on continuing to compete in that sport as well.
"I'm going to be focusing 120 percent on [boxing] as soon as this fight's over," Noons said. "One of my passions is boxing to tell you the truth."
But Noons has vowed not to let his future goals distract him from the task at hand.
"I am not looking past Yves Edwards," he said.
During the interview Noons discussed a variety of other topics, including potential future rematches with Nick Diaz and Charles "Krazy Horse" Bennett, as well as having Tracy Lee of Combat Lifestyle follow his training and Rocky, his four-pound Yorkshire Terrier. To hear the full interview, download Thursday's edition of TAGG Radio, available for free in the TAGG Radio Network archives.