Phil Davis isn’t about to laugh off Vinny Magalhaes’ attempt to troll him on Twitter.
The way Davis sees it, if a fan spouts off on Twitter, that’s one thing. But if a fighter says something, that’s something entirely different.
“If I’m a fan, I have an opinion, nor matter good nor bad nor indifferent, I’m a fan,” Davis said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “Fighters, you should probably keep your opinions to yourself unless you want to fight. You’re going to have to live up to some of the things you share, and that may not be as cool as some of the internet bloggers get to make out.”
Davis will fight Magalhaes in a light heavyweight showdown at UFC 159 in Newark. The wheels were set in motion when Magalhaes called Davis out on Twitter just moments after Davis defeated Wagner Prado at UFC 153 in Rio de Janeiro.
But what really irked Davis is that according to him, Magalhaes was offered a bout with Davis at UFC 155 when Forrest Griffin had to pull out, but declined.
“It’s one thing if you want to call a guy out, that’s fine,” Davis said. “I don’t really call people out, that’s not what I do, but if that’s what you do, cool, no problem. But, after my buddy Forrest got hurt at 155, he called me out while I was still in Brazil, I had just got done fighting, I was still in the arena, and he tweets he wants to fight me next. That’s cool. That’s really cool. I’m actually kind of amazed, I always I wanted to be at level where guys call me out, It’s weird that I’m at a level where ‘I want to fight this guy.’ I thought I was a nobody, and here, he proves me wrong by calling me out. That’s awesome. Now, if you have the opportunity to fight me, you can’t back down after you already have agreed. It’s just silly. The guy, he’s silly.”
Davis went into a mocking tone of voice when asked to speculate on why Magalhaes wouldn’t take the bout at UFC 155.
“I don’t want to start quoting from all his excuses, because this is only an hour-long show and we just don’t have time for that,” Davis said. “First he said he was overweight, then he said, I didn’t want to get hurt, if he had a real fight camp he would beat me, blah blah blah blah. You forfeit your rights to this thing once you call people out.”
The former NCAA champion wrestler contrasted Magalhaes’ approach to that of Magalhaes’ training partner, Chael Sonnen.
“Take Chael Sonnen for example,” Davis said. “Whether you love the guy or hate the guy, if he calls you out, he will fight you on a week’s notice, that’s who he is, he’s Chael Sonnen. Vinny, he ain’t that guy, I don’t know who he is.”
So its clear there’s no love lost between Davis and Magalhaes. But what about the matchup itself? At 10-1 with one no-contest, Davis is universally considered a top-10 light heavyweight. Magalhaes, meanwhile, was cut from the UFC in 2008 and had to fight his way back.
Davis seems to recognize the disparity between the two. “If I say simply, ‘he’s not on my level, he doesn’t deserve to be fighting me,’ I feel like that sounds worse than it actually is,” Davis said. “It almost sounds like I’m talking about his character as a person rather than his fighting skills, so, I’m going to word it a little differently and say what he’s done in the UFC, which is one win, I guess you can count his old two losses, doesn’t really warrant him a fight with me. But, you know, I don’t do matchmaking, that’s entirely up to Joe Silva, he’s a genius, I’m just going to go with what he says. I don’t question him. The man knows what he’s doing.”
But that doesn’t mean Davis won’t be motivated for the fight when the Octagon gate locks.
“I’m up for every fight,” Davis said. “My only hope is, I hope the evening of April 27, when he gets back to his hotel room, I hope he doesn’t think to himself, what did I do this for? Why did I call this man out, it doesn’t make any sense? I could have fought somebody who wasn’t top ten, I could have fought someone who wasn’t top five, I could have fought somebody I could have beat and came home without two black eyes and a bruised ego. Why did I call this guy out? I hope he doesn’t say that, but most likely he will.”
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