Ricky Simon rescheduled honeymoon for 'dream' fight vs. UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – In just his fourth UFC appearance, Ricky Simon will get an opportunity of a lifetime.
On Saturday, Simon has a chance to add a win over a legend to his resume when he meets UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber in his comeback fight at UFC on ESPN+ 13.
Since he entered the UFC, Simon (15-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) dreamed of a fight with Faber (34-10 MMA, 10-6 UFC), who at the time was retired. Two years after initially announcing his retirement from MMA, “The California Kid” couldn’t stay away, and it will be Simon who welcomes him back.
“I’ve prepped for the best Urijah, and I’m hoping for the best Urijah,” Simon told MMA Junkie on Thursday. “This has been a dream fight of mine for forever. When I first got into the UFC, I did a Reddit AMA and someone had asked me, ‘What’s your dream fight,’ and I said Urijah Faber. I know he’s retired, but that was always a dream fight of mine.”
While he hopes to get the best version of Faber come Saturday night, Simon believes that, even with their similarities in styles, Faber is older and at the tail-end of his career.
“He’s a trailblazer for the weight class, and I feel like we have similar styles, but he’s 40 years old now,” Simon said. “I feel like I look more like Urijah Faber than Urijah Faber does, so I’m excited to go in there and put an awesome show.”
Simon, who was planning on returning in August, was heading to his honeymoon with his fiancee before he got the call to face Faber. He jumped at the opportunity right away, and thankfully his fiancee completely understood the importance of this fight.
“She believes in me a lot, so she knows I’m going to go in there and put an awesome performance against a Hall of Famer,” Simon said. “And then we set our honeymoon for the following Monday, so we’re going to have an even better one afterwards.”
Golden1 Center will be packed, especially with the return of Faber. Team Alpha Male has been a staple in Sacramento, breeding tons of top-level talent. Six Team Alpha Male members will compete Saturday, but Simon doesn’t see that as an issue.
“I don’t feel pressure. I try to stay stoic in my approach,” Simon said. “I feel like I’m very mentally strong, and I feel like that definitely helps me in all my fights and has gotten me to this point, so once I make that walk, there’s always those nerves. But once I make that walk I just have tunnel vision. It’s just the cage, the opponent and myself, and we’re going to find out if he still has what it takes.”
“I’m excited to see Urijah Faber back too and see if he still has it,” Simon added. “With both of our styles, I feel like we have such an exciting style naturally so it’s going to be fireworks.”
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