Chris Cariaso Excited For UFC On FX 8 Bout With Jussier “Formiga”: “Anybody Who Is Going To Get Me To That Belt”
By Kelsey Mowatt
This Saturday’s UFC on FX 8 card will feature a pivotal bout in the promotion’s flyweight division, as the number seven ranked Chris Cariaso will take on the the fifth place holder Jussier “Formiga” da Silva. Although Cariaso is probably more of a familiar name with casual fans, due to his 4-2 run in the Octagon to date, da Silva has been a top ranked fighter now for some time.
“This is one of the fights that I wanted you know?” Cariaso said on Full Contact Fighter Radio recently. “I just fought John Moraga and unfortunately I lost to him, kind of had that fight on short notice and now he gets the title shot. For me, if I had won that fight, that would have been me getting that title shot, so, I need to get back up in the rankings and this is definitely a fight I wanted.”
Cariaso is referring to the loss he suffered versus John Moraga at UFC 155 in December, which came via a third round, guillotine choke. The defeat ended Cariaso’s three fight win streak that had positioned him in the title shot mix. Moraga has since been tapped for a July 27th bout with flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson.
“I wanted a top ten guy, top five guy, because I want that belt,” Cariaso added about the bout with “Formiga”, which will take place this Saturday in Jaragua dos Sul, Brazil. “Anybody who is going to get me to that belt; that’s what I’m looking for.”
“Formiga” is coming off a second round, stoppage loss to John Dodson in October, in what was da Silva’s Octagon debut. The Nova Uniao fighter made his way to the UFC armed with a five fight win streak, for fights of which da Silva ended via submission. The only other man to defeat “Formiga” to date is fellow UFC flyweight, Ian McAll, who handed him a unanimous decision loss under the Tachi Palace Fights banner in February, 2011.
While the Brazilian has recorded multiple submission wins throughout his career, and is a black belt in jiu-jitsu as well as judo, Cariaso is better known for his striking game.
“Always man, for me, I love to stand so why am I going to go out there and play jiu-jitsu with a jiu-jitsu player?” said Cariaso, who is decorated boxing and kickboxing competitor. “I’m a jiu-jitsu player myself but definitely standing is where I want to keep the fight.”
Due to Cariaso’s striking skills, it remains to be seen if da Silva looks to engage the 5’3 tall fighter standing for an extended period of time, or if he’ll try to take him to the ground.
“He’s not a real explosive wrestler,” noted Cariaso. “He’s much different than, you know, (Joseph) Benavidez and the Demetrious Johnson kind of style. He’s kind of more, locks up, get that body tie, not as explosive. He has more of real jiu-jitsu style takedowns.”
“Anybody in the UFC, and anybody with a record as good as he has, is going to be decent on his feet,” Cariaso furthered. “I definitely think he’s going to be decent on his feet, but he’s not a big kicker, likes to box a lot…I definitely think he wants to take that fight to the ground.”
And is Cariaso concerned about the fact he’ll be far from the hometown favorite, when he faces da Silva in his native Brazil?
“I always expect an enemy crowd but I’ve fought an English guy in England, I fought a Japanese guy in Japan, so I’m kind of used to going out there and being hated,” said Cariaso. “So there’s not much pressure on me…I hope by the end of the fight I will have gained some more fans.”
Stay tuned to Full Contact Fighter for all your news regarding UFC on FX 8.