61f9e7fc98b11beda1f7427d58379565Jeremy Stephens looks to snap his two fight losing streak Saturday when he meets Dennis Bermudez on the main card at UFC 189 Saturday in Las Vegas. The UFC featherweight spoke to MMAOddsBreaker on Episode 112 of “The Parting Shot Podcast” to discuss his upcoming matchup and variety of other topics.   UFC 189 match up with Dennis Bermudez “I see myself matching up very well against him. He’s a typical, brawler, meathead wrestler. He likes to push a cardio pace and that’s that. I feel like I can stuff all his shots, annihilate his game and just pick him apart. I feel like I’m better athlete, more explosive, longer ranger fighter. I can knock him out between the first and third round. Overall I’m more confident and experienced over him.”   Response to Bermudez saying on Ep. 112 of The Parting Shot Podcast There are very few people, who can keep up with my cardio and relentlessness. Good luck with [Stephens] trying to do that” “Good luck getting punched in the face and feeling that power. Seeing how you’re going to be diving for my ankles. That’s what it’s going to be, that’s what it is with everybody. I know I have it, I can keep up with his cardio; I’m in great shape for this camp. I fixed all my past mistakes; mentally I’m a lot better than him. He can say what he wants but he got choked in the first round of his last fight. Everybody’s talking about how great his cardio looked. Cardio doesn’t matter when you’re getting knocked the f**ck out. So good luck with that buddy.”   Response to Bermudez saying he can finish him  “I think he’ll be diving for my ankles at some point and turning this into a blanket match. That’s his style; if he feels like he wants to come in, then I’m more than welcome to give the fans what they really want to see. Overall he’s going to have to be forced to stand with me, that’s just going to be a bad night for him. I’m a bad match up for him; overall I’m in great shape. I’m just feeling confident. I’m very blessed for this opportunity on such a big card. I’m going to make it a bad night for him and it’s going to be my night all night.”   Layoff helping him improve his skillset at Alliance MMA  “It’s going to be seven months before I get back into the octagon since my last fight. I’ve actually been in both camps with Justin Lawrence getting back to back wins. I’ve been in camp this whole time just learning, growing, evolving and getting things hashed out in my camp.  I’ve just been on a really strict program dieting. I’ve gotten with a great Greco Olympic coach Darryl Christianson.  I’ve just being going through guy’s camps, learning and growing as a fighter. It feels good to get such a long layoff. I’ve taken advantage of that opportunity; I haven’t been sitting on my ass, I’ve been busting my ass harder than anybody else in the game. I’m looking forward to taking advantage of that opportunity and displaying all the skills that I’ve been learning on July 11th.”   Teammate Myles Jury throwing out his Reebok gear JuryReebok “I think [Myles] did a fantastic job. From what I know and I don’t really want to get into any details. Reebok said that they were going to take care of him and he was on the team for a while before any of this even came out – before UFC was going to be taken over by them. I’m a big a stickler on your word is your bond. When they go back on that, it makes you not want to trust them. For them to go and do that and go do [something else], I felt like he did the right thing speaking up. We’re not puppets we have a voice and a vision. When supposed to show up at 8pm for Reebok, you best believe I’m going to be ready. Overall I think he got it hashed out, he ended up getting what he wanted out of it. So for him to speak up, I feel like that was the right move at the right time. You got to say what’s on your mind and the truth.”   Reebok uniform unveiling last week  “To be honest I didn’t really pay attention to all that stuff that’s going on, it’s beyond my control. I’m just glad I’m up there in the top 20 fights and I’m pushing and getting closer and closer in the rankings. I just have to go there and focus on my job. Reebok and UFC, they’re doing their thing, I’m doing my thing. There is nothing I can really say anything about it. I’m paying more attention to my fight.”   Throwing out the first pitch at the San Diego Padres game last week  stephenspadres “It was awesome. Probably a lot of people don’t know I was baseball player from tee ball all the way up to high school. I enjoyed playing ball my whole life and it just brought my back to my summer days, all the travelling, and the journey. Baseball was a big part of my life so it was cool to get down there and represent the Padres, represent myself and get an opportunity like that.”   How the San Diego Padres will finish this season “I think they’ll do alright, but you know it the Padres. They aren’t a highlight team but they’re doing well, they’re developing. But still they’re no Boston Red Sox.”   How he spends his downtime  “My downtime is my family time usually. But I’m a man, so I love all sports. I like to stay up on ESPN and all the highlights. I’m not a big nerd about it or do I know everybody’s name on the roster.  I’m definitely big into sports and I’m a fan of greatness as well. I like watching all the great things that happen in sports.”   Replacement for Jose Aldo in the UFC 189 main event “No I wasn’t [considerd], but I contacted the UFC since I was on the fight card. With my last, close losses, unfortunately I fell short of being up there. I was looking to more or less put it out there, if they wanted to see an exciting fight, [I’m that guy]. I do realize there are guys like Chad and Frankie ahead of me. It is what it is; I’m still focused on my fight.”   Prediction for Chad Mendes vs. Conor McGregor  “Could go either way. Conor’s pretty elusive; he’s good at getting into the fighters head mentally. Chad is a very mentally strong person. His wrestling will [serve] him well. I think Chad is able to take him down every round but is he in peak shape like Conor? We’ll have see, he’s a good athlete, somebody who always stays in shape. If Conor could defend takedowns in the later rounds and keep it standing, he has a shot of knocking him out. But if I had to put my money on anybody, I’d have to put it on Mendes.”   Prediction for his fight Saturday night  “I’m not a big prediction guy; I’m just a big fan of hard work and dedication. Going in there and putting everything I said into action. I could see this panning out in a lot ways. It’s going to end with my hand raised, no doubt about it. I’m going to put a beating on him and I’m going to take everything from him. It’s not going to be easy but I’m predicting a win. Going in there and exciting the fans in the way I do it.”   Where a win over Bermudez puts him in the division “Puts me right on a roll, puts me right up there taking his spot or whoever else’s spot. I’m looking to go there and having a great fight, stay healthy and keep it rolling. I’m a big fan of fighting all the time as well. Whatever happens is going to happen. I’m always the type of person who is going to go forward. I like to fight people who are ahead of me, in those top 3% and getting close to that title is the ultimate goal.”   You can follow Jeremy on Twitter @LilHeathenMMA, he would like to thank Alliance MMA and DeeZee Shirts. You can listen to the full audio version of the interview below (58 mins in)