Former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker plans on making a statement when he fights Darren Till.
The pair will collide in a middleweight encounter that will headline the final Fight Island event taking place next month on July 25. Both fighters have been regularly sharing memes and banter with each other, even before their fight was made official.
Whittaker Not Friends With Till
While it’s a welcome change for Whittaker, especially given how his last fight with Israel Adesanya got heated and personal at times, he still plans on “crushing” Till when the Octagon door closes.
After all, he has no friends in the middleweight division.
“Honestly, it’s the same as it’s always been,” Whittaker told Submission Radio when asked if his relationship has changed with Till. “It’s cool how it’s a different approach, but I’m not really thinking about whether Darren’s a cool guy or not. Before the fight was lined up it was cool to just josh back and forth, have a bit of fun with it, try to make some interest for the fight, but once we kind of knew we were fighting, I don’t really care what sort of person he is. It’s just one of those things where all I’m focusing on now is just focusing on crushing him.
“Let me just say, I have no friends in the middleweight division. I can’t be friends with anybody I could be fighting. So, let’s just clear that up. And two, mate, we’re in the fight game. It’s cool to be lined up with a guy that isn’t acting like a Gronk, but at the end of the day, he’s coming to take what’s mine and I’m coming to take what’s his, and that’s the game we’re in. That’s the fight game, that’s the fight world.
“The thing is, we’re just cool. He’s doing his thing, I’m doing mine. We have a bit of fun, but we’re both respectful. But don’t get this wrong, the weeks are getting closer and our sights are set on each other’s faces. It’s war time. I’m ready for the fight of my life, and I’m gonna bring the fight of his life.”
It’s even more important for Whittaker to make a statement considering his last outing was at UFC 243 in October last year when he lost his middleweight title to Adesanya via second-round knockout.
That said, Whittaker does find Till’s approach funny and wishes more fighters would adopt his method of trash talking compared to the usual in-your-face style.
“He’s funny. I much prefer his approach to trash talking, if you would, than other people,” Whittaker added. “Because, like, I don’t understand why people need to get so into it. We’re gonna fight, you know what I mean? We’re gonna fight. I know some people have to get emotionally invested in it, but whatever. It’s a new approach, it’s original, it’s cool.”
You can watch the full interview below: