Although a lot of the attention has been devoted to his opponent, Tyron Woodley (and/or the co-main event), it's certainly been an interesting build-up to #UFC209 for Stephen Thompson to say the least. The normally reserved welterweight contender has found himself verbally sparring with the champ on no small number of occassions, dishing on everything from respect to his perceived sense of entitlement that had left "Wonderboy" a bit flabbergasted by his own admission.
This weekend, however, the former kickboxer who Georges St-Pierre has labeled "the best striker I've ever seen in my life" will get the chance to settle things with his first true MMA rival once and for all.
That is, if his opponent's head is still in the game.
"He's more stressed out than I am," said Thompson of Woodley's mental game heading into their rematch.
"He's a little more disappointed in the decision and how everything was going. I knew he was talking about fighting other people after our last fight. For me, if I was the champion, I couldn't move on from that."
"I just hope that his mind's right for Saturday."
And although he's never been one for trash talk, Thompson was even so bold as to question Woodley's power, saying that Jake Ellenberger "hit him a lot harder" than "The Chosen One" ever did.