Daron Cruickshank Breaks Down Win Over Yves Edwards, Says “It Was a Huge Honor” to Fight Vet
By Kelsey Mowatt
Considering Daron Cruickshank had gone 2-1 in the Octagon, and agreed to fight Yves Edwards on short notice, chances are the lightweight wasn’t facing the chopping block at UFC on FOX 8. That said, during a time when somewhat surprising cuts are being made, Cruickshank knew how important it was to rebound from his loss to John Makdessi in March.
“You don’t want to lose two in a row,” Cruickshank recently said on Full Contact Fighter Radio, while discussing the win he scored over Edwards on July 27th. “Especially, I’m up-and-coming, I don’t have a big name yet. But, they also said you’re doing a big positive by taking this fight when they already had someone back out, and you’ll have another fight.”
“That kind of took the pressure off me; it made me not worry about I have to win this fight, but I have to put on a show,” the 28 year-old fighter added. “I want to do the best I can and that’s what happened.”
Of course, in the end, Cruickshank didn’t have to worry about receiving another fight as a return favor, as the noted striker emerged with a tightly contested, split decision win.
“I’ve actually watched the entire fight in slow motion, just to see all the shots that were thrown and everything, and really, out of the exchanges, I really didn’t get hit with too much,” said Cruickshank (13-3). “He landed a bunch of leg kicks and some random stuff, but out of all of the exchanges, all of the punches just grazed me or just missed me.”
As often is the case with split decision wins, after the bout there was some debate as to which lightweight should have been awarded the victory. It should be noted that two judges scored it 30-27 for Cruickshank, and the other 30-27 for Edwards.
“To the untrained eye, and to the guy that doesn’t know what’s going on, you only see him pushing forward,” the Michigan fighter said. “Yes, he pushed forward the whole time, but if you look into the exchanges and into the actual damage that was done, I just landed a lot more than he did. That’s the object; to punch him in the face more than he punches me.”
Edwards is no stranger to memorable battles, after all, the 36 year-old fighter was competing in his 63rd pro bout. Prior to facing Cruickshank, the “Thugjitsu Master” took on Isaac Vallie-Flagg at UFC 156 in February, and also lost by split decision.
“It was a huge honor to fight a guy that has been paving the way for my generation,” Cruickshank said. “I’m pretty sure he’s been in the UFC since 2001. I think I was a sophomore in high school in 2001. So, it was huge; I could not pass it up, not in a million years. There was no second guesses. They asked me if I’d do the fight and I said yes, let’s do this. It was all positive.”
“So, say I did lose the fight, it was still a big name to lose against and an opportunity to get my face out there even more…Jumping in, being there when the UFC needs somebody, that’s awesome.”