Stephen R. Sylvanie - USA Today Sports

Rafaello Oliveira Speaks On His Game Plan Against Erik Koch

Rafaello Oliveira recently spoke about his upcoming fight with Erik Koch at UFC 170 which is tonight. Check out the highlights:

On his goals: “My long-term goals are to be one of the top fighters in the lightweight division, to be remembered as a great fighter, and to have a shot at capturing the belt.”

On his loss to Edson Barboza: “I believe that I and my team made a mistake when choosing a strategy against Barboza. We were more concerned with his spinning kicks and less worried about leg strikes. I actually did practice defending low kicks, but unfortunately I didn’t have any sparring partners who could kick like him. So credit goes to Edson Barboza. I wasn’t able to react because he’s so fast and precise.”

On his 1-3 record in his last four fights: “I’m about to have my eighth bout in the UFC, but I’m not satisfied. I know I can perform a lot better than I have in the past. And that’s what I aim to show in my next fight.”

On Koch: “I think Erik is a great athlete. He’s moving up in weight class to face me, from featherweight to lightweight. And both Francisco Rivera and Raphael Assuncao, whom he beat, are currently bantamweights. I respect him. He was a top featherweight. But I think he’ll feel the difference when he debuts as a UFC lightweight.”

On his gameplan: “We’ll start on the feet and let’s see what happens. I’m ready to trade on the feet and put pressure on him. Expect me to be very aggressive. I’m looking forward to bringing this victory back to Brazil.”

Tags: Edson Barboza Erik Koch Rafaello Oliveira UFC 170

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