Mixed martial arts can be a cutthroat business when friendships are involved.
Many times, friendships have been lost and egos have gotten the better of some of the sport’s elite.
Enter in Donald Cerrone and Melvin Guillard. The two lightweights were former training partners at Greg Jackson’s, and still are great friends heading into UFC 150: Henderson vs. Edgar II.
Cerrone respects Guillard so much that he left Jackson’s to let him know that he’s not seeking an unfair advantage. The former WEC star wants an even playing field, so he moved his fight camp back to Vail, Colo., where he first started his MMA training.
“Denver is high altitude, man, and going to Vail just to train, trust me I didn’t want to.” Cerrone said on the UFC 150 media conference call. “Melvin and I trained a lot together with Greg. I kind of went away from Greg on this fight a little bit and just did my own thing. Not any reason other than I didn’t want Melvin to think that Greg was giving me all his secrets and whatnot.
“This fight between Melvin and I is nothing but professional; it’s no personal beef. No nothing. I just went away, went up to Vail, got my conditioning in order and ready to go make some money.”
The two spent so much time cutting their teeth under the tutelage of Jackson, and still maintain a mutual admiration even after Guillard left to the Blackzilians.
Come fight time though, Jackson will be in the ear of Cerrone. Cowboy just didn’t want his former teammate to think he used Jackson to dissect his entire game.
“Oh no, he’s definitely going to be in my corner. I just haven’t been training with him like the last four weeks. There’s nothing, no beef or anything with me and Greg, other than obvious respect for Melvin and taking off and doing my own thing. I didn’t want him thinking that I’m not working the game plan.”
In the long run, the two men will enter UFC 150 great friends and exit the same, but it won’t stop Cerrone and Guillard from going at it hard. The two former teammates will look to give the Denver fans their moneys worth on Saturday night.