There's a new breed of fighter emerging from Duke Roufus' camp deep inside the heart of Wisconsin. Fighters like Mike 'Biggie' Rhodes. A former RFA champion, he was on the fast track to success. He had it all - the high-profile camp, the win streak, the talent... But it all came crashing down as he dropped his first two fights in a row when he joined the UFC. Now, he faces Erick Silva. Once the golden child of up-and-coming Brazilian fighters, Silva has gone 2-3 in his last 5 fights. Somewhere in Las Vegas, the matchmakers decided to put these two together. Desperate for a win, both of these two are preparing for war at UFC Fight Night 58, and Rhodes is heading into battle with bad intentions. Interview by Matt Homeyer. You have been off to a rocky start going 0-2 in your first two fights in the UFC and both going to decision do feel you had opportunities to finish either of those fights? I think both of those fights presented challenges in different ways. The first one was the weight cut and the amount of time that I had with the fight being on short notice. The second one, I was facing a guy that was highly talented, he won the ultimate fighter, traveling to a different country, I\u2019ve never done that, cutting weight, and all that other stuff for the first time while traveling, those things presented challenges that played a part in the whole thing. To go back and say could I finish those fights? Yea in MMA you can always find a way to finish the fight. But the opportunity, I just didn\u2019t seize it, there were times that I could have but I just couldn\u2019t pull the trigger and get it done. With back to back losses for the first time in your career, how are you coping with that and do you feel added pressure with it being for the UFC? I mean, there is always pressure; being 0-2 the only pressure I\u2019m feeling is that I hate losing. I don\u2019t like that to coincide with my name or anything that I represent. My main focus is to get back to my winning ways. That\u2019s what I am accustomed to, that\u2019s why I train so hard so that I can win. As far as pressure there is always pressure, with every fight there is pressure, everything you do in life is pressured. The pressure doesn\u2019t bother me, it doesn\u2019t motivate me, and it really doesn\u2019t play a part in anything that I do. You had mentioned that travel was an issue; do you feel the travel plays a big role in fights where you have to leave the states and travel overseas? I feel it definitely plays a role; you are not eating the way you normally eat. You\u2019re on a long flight and cutting weight and there\u2019s nothing you can do about it. Once you get there you still have to cut weight and being in a foreign country you\u2019re not getting what you are accustomed to. You don\u2019t have the foods that you would be eating here. Even though the UFC does a good job of making sure you have everything and that things are ready and at your fingertips for availability. There are still things that you don\u2019t get that you\u2019re accustomed to. Fighting in other countries a lot of people think it\u2019s fun traveling and stuff like that, I don\u2019t look at it that way. It\u2019s a tough experience, I got to get one of those under my belt so hopefully this time it goes smoother and I can add to the process and make it easier for myself each time I have to do this. Erick Silva is a very well rounded fighter with wins coming by submission, knockout, and going to decision. Do you see any holes in his game that you plan to exploit? Umm, I wouldn\u2019t say holes I think there are just some things that he doesn\u2019t do quite as well as others. I know he\u2019s really explosive, I know he\u2019s really well rounded but he tends to open a little wider a little bit wilder he fights really exciting but that opens yourself up to be countered and eat shots so that\u2019s what I\u2019m going to be looking to do. When he goes wide I\u2019m going to look to stay controlled with my posture and my techniques and be the cleaner sharper fighter. With back to back losses and coming back after a surgery is there any part of your game that you have really worked on for your upcoming fight with Silva? No, you know there is no particular spot in my game that I feel that I need to focus on and improve. I\u2019m one of those guys that\u2019s very well rounded and so I just look to improve everywhere. I\u2019m not going to pick out a specific thing in my game, that\u2019s how you force other areas to lack because you neglect those areas. So I just stay training all the time, making sure that I hit every focal point in my mind that I think I need to work on. I work on it all and I put it all together. With the group of world class fighters that you have to train and spar with at Roufusport, is there anyone in particular that has been helping you get ready for this fight with Silva? Not really, it\u2019s a team effort for everyone here. I have teammates that play different roles, I have teammates that fight similar to him with the high output little bit wider open style. Other than that, a striker's a striker, a wrestler's a wrestler it doesn\u2019t really matter. As long as I am training with the best strikers in the world I\u2019m not going to be concerned about Erick Silva. Yea he\u2019s dangerous, but I\u2019m dangerous too. I train with some guys, Anthony Pettis just to name one that\u2019s on a striking level that is untouchable by a lot of guys. So I don\u2019t have to go out of my way to find someone to simulate him or anything like that. That\u2019s no concern to me. Is this the biggest fight of your career and what would a win over Silva mean to you? Every fight is a big fight in the UFC and Erick Silva is a big name in Brazil. I feel like there are some names out there and he\u2019s one of them. If I can go into his hometown and take him out on his own soil that puts me right back in there. It\u2019s just another fight for me, I\u2019m grateful the UFC gave me another fight you know hopefully I can take full advantage of this one and get back in the win column. I\u2019m only 25 years old; I\u2019m still young in this game. I have only been training and fighting for three years so no matter the income of the fighter, the outcome of the fight I\u2019m not concerned it won\u2019t be the last time you see me. I\u2019m not only confident that I can go in there get a win bonus but put on an exciting fight. That fifty thousand dollar bonus that\u2019s what I\u2019m looking for that\u2019s what I\u2019m shooting for to make money in this sport while I can. Is this the best Biggie we\u2019ve seen yet and should we expect anything exciting in this fight? Yea, you know I have done some big things or exciting things in the sport but getting a UFC win against Erick Silva in Brazil you would have to see the best Biggie. This is going to be my best performance, hopefully my shortest performance. Hopefully I can go out and get the job done really quick, I don\u2019t want to go to a decision in his home country so I\u2019m looking to go over there with bad intentions. It\u2019s going to be a gun fight, it\u2019s going to be whoever gets hit first and I\u2019m ok with that because I think it\u2019s going to me who puts that right hand on his chin and put him to sleep. You recently hurt your knee, why don\u2019t you explain what happened as well as the process you had to go through with surgeries and being away from the gym. Yeah, in my fight with Whittaker, I got taken down and the knee popped couldn\u2019t extend my leg. Finally during the fight on the ground it popped back straight and I was able to get up and still do some things. After the fight I went back home, I had some knee pain it was bothering me so I went to the doctor, the doctors said I had a torn meniscus, they did the surgery while I was in Las Vegas. It\u2019s usually six to eight weeks to get back active, I took a little bit longer I took ten weeks to make sure the process would go smoothly for me. I took the process and made sure that I was back healthy. At this point the knee still swells every now and then but that\u2019s just due to the fact that it\u2019s still healing and repairing itself but I am still able to train fully and at a high level. So it\u2019s not affecting me at the moment. You were seen in the background of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Pettis vs Team Melendez as a coach for Pettis. How was that experience for you? Yea I was bought out there to help on the show, when I got injured it kind of hindered that opportunity. I was stuck sitting on the sidelines so I was kind of more of just a voice of reason. Our coaching system and our style is very mental orientated. You have to be smart to understand it and to grasp the little things with the techniques, so I was kind of that buffer for the girls. I would kind of break things down or speak to them using a different term or different language. Every coach uses different wording and stuff like that. My experience on the show was great; I got to be around some high class women and made friends with a lot of them. It was really nice to see them go through the experience and be a friend to them when they are not allowed to have their phone or any contact with the outside world, so it was nice to be that for them. Also it was nice to get to see how the show works and everything like that so overall it was a great experience. Is there anyone you want to thank for helping you get ready for this upcoming fight? I just want to thank all my teammates at Roufusport. I want to thank Matt Gifford at NX Level, he\u2019s my strength and conditioning coach who is always helping me elevate my game, making me bigger faster stronger. Matt Gibbons who helped me with my physical therapy and helped me get my knee back to a hundred percent. Dr. Sanders, who did the surgery out in Las Vegas. I just want to thank those guys and I want to thank my family, my mom, Sandra Harmon and all the gang back in Waterloo, Iowa they keep me motivated, they don\u2019t know what I go through. so many things and I can just get through it by thinking about them and trying to be the best man I can be for them. I want to thank my sponsors, all the guys who are on my sponsor team now they\u2019re on my website www.biggiemma.com. Check all those guys out I appreciate it any of the new sponsors that are going to be joining the team I want to thank you in advance. I thank the UFC for giving me one more fight and I\u2019m going to take full advantage of it.