The Canadian standout suffered a close split-decision loss to “Ruthless” in their first encounter at UFC 167, but claims that he wasn’t totally focused or motivated for that fight (via MMAJunkie):
“I had a couple things in training and my body wasn’t feeling good; I just lost motivation,” MacDonald stated. “I couldn’t train as hard as I usually did and the injury kind of made me not focused. It just made me not into it. I think it was just my hunger was not there. I wasn’t really into the fight at that point. Before that fight I was like, ‘Oh, I just kind of want this to be over.’ I wasn’t really interested in fighting. I just wanted to get it over and done with and just relax.”
MacDonald said that some members of his camp had suggested that he pull out of the fight, however he eventually chose to make the walk at UFC 167:
“I had people telling me I shouldn’t fight, but I did it anyways,” MacDonald said. “I said that I was going to do it. I don’t think the fight was signed, but I said I was going to do it. I had got injured like two or three fights in a row and I was just sick of it. I kind of came to the conclusion that you can’t be perfect in every fight.”
This time around, Rory feels that the fight with Lawler will go differently but he is excited for a potential war:
“The difference is this time I want to fight; I’m looking forward to being in there and having the blood on my face and being in the heat of battle,” MacDonald said. “I don’t think he’s as dynamic in his skills than me, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a hard fight.”
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