Saturday night is a huge deal for Donald Cerrone.
Cerrone returns to the Octagon when he takes on fellow veteran Joe Lauzon in a lightweight bout at UFC 274 this weekend.
It will be Cerrone’s first outing in a year as he will look to snap a six-fight skid without a victory and return to the win column.
However, this upcoming fight means a lot more to “Cowboy” for one reason and one reason alone. The fact that his son will be in attendance, and is now old enough to fully register what he does for a living.
“It’s not me it’s my son,” Cerrone said (via MMA Fighting). “I can’t wait to walk out of that [cage] and see the look on his face. I can’t wait. He finally knows what I do. It’s crazy how emotional I get but any time I was working out and I didn’t want to do it, that’s who I thought of. I cannot f****** wait.
“I cannot wait to see him smile like ‘wow this is my dad’ so to me that’s why I wanted a sold out crowd. To walk out of that tunnel, blow the roof off this place and look over and see my son like ‘wow Dad, that’s you.’”
Of course, Cerrone’s son has made appearances in the Octagon before.
This time, however, will be much different.
“He’s almost four and he’ll be able to grasp that,” Cerrone said. “He still doesn’t know what I do. Like ‘you’re going to Vegas to go to work, dad?’ He doesn’t know what that means.
“He loves Ninja Turtles, he loves fighting, so I can’t wait to ask him ‘what Ninja Turtle is daddy going to be tonight?’ cause I’m going to go out there and kick some f****** ass so watch out.”
Donald Cerrone: Fighting In Front Of My Son Is Legacy
Cerrone — who was holding back tears as he was clearly emotional — has his fair share of accomplishments in the fight game, even without a UFC title.
But his fight against Lauzon may just be the peak of his career given that his son will be able to witness him first-hand.
“That’s definitely legacy,” Cerrone added. “I don’t ever get emotional during fighting. Kids bring that out of you. You can tell right now, I’m a f****** wreck. It’s a feeling that I couldn’t explain unless you have your own kids.”
UFC 274 takes place Saturday night in Phoenix, Arizona.
It will be headlined by a lightweight title fight between Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje. The co-main event, meanwhile, features a women’s strawweight title rematch between Rose Namajunas and Carla Esparza.