Matt Brown put on one hell of a show at UFC Fight Night 26, steamrolling Mike Pyle in the opening round and making his presence even more known at 170lbs. With the win came the inevitable talk of potential title shots for The Immortal, something he has certainly relished in recent interviews.
While talking to MMAJunkie.com, Brown gave us an insight in to his feelings on a future title tilt with GSP:
"I know where my wrestling stands; it's simply a matter of executing those abilities in the ring with 'GSP.' I can outwrestle him. I'm calling it right now.”
I know what you’re thinking, another fighter claiming he can out wrestle GSP, but Brown seems to think he has good reason behind his bold claim:
"I don't think [St-Pierre has] ever fought anybody that can put the kind of pressure that I put on him, and I think I can stop his takedowns," Brown said. "His best chance is to get a takedown. People haven't seen my wrestling. I'm training with the best wrestlers in the world right now, and I'm getting pretty damn good at it."
Brown certainly seems to be doing something right, after going 1-4 between 2011-12, The Immortal has picked up a six fight win streak. Only going to the judge’s scorecards once, against Stephen Thompson, Brown also is becoming a fan favourite.
Could this be another case of a fighter trying to talk above their payscale? Maybe, and it is a pretty big jump to assume that GSP will still be the champion by the time Brown is in line for the next shot at Welterweight.
Training out of Ohio gives Brown access to some of the best wrestling coaches/partners in the USA, but St-Pierre is a different kind of fighter. Part of me thinks that Brown is taking the Chael P approach to a title shot, where the other part thinks he may actually be the next big contender.
So what’s next? I think we should see Brown face a top 10 opponent, Pyle is a tough opponent but not quite title shot material. Let’s see Brown go against Lawler/Tarec or even Jake Shields to see if he really does have what it takes to compete in the upper echelon.
“This was the dream when I set out to start this," Brown said. "I've actually surpassed my own expectations. I've lost some fights, and a little bit of that was a mental block, thinking I couldn't be where I'm at now. It feels pretty good to prove myself wrong."