Atlanta, GA – Clay Collard stole the show at this year’s PFL 1 card, earning a Fight of the Year contender against Jeremy Stephens.
Collard returns Friday in his second straight main event, taking on Alex Martinez at PFL 4.
Wednesday’s PFL 4 media day had an upbeat Collard (21-9, 1NC) saying: ‘I feel too good for it to be a weight cut day, I said that to the coach all the day. I feel like my body is amazing, so I’m ready to get in there and do it.
Collard said before his second main event that he planned to unleash his inner Ninja Turtle. If you’re curious who that is, well, here’s your answer. “My favorite ninja turtle is hands down the party guy, Mr. Michelangelo.”
Makes sense. Michelangelo wields the nunchaku, which Collard has been seen trying out (as has Nick Diaz), although he has also been photographed with Raphael’s twin Sai.
When asked who would perform better in a nunchaku fight, himself or Diaz, Collard laughed. “He’s probably a little better at spinning them and looking cool, but give me a gun and I’m a mortal man.”
There is a more serious task ahead, of course. Collard actually sits 3rd in the division thanks to the three points he earned in the fight against Stephens. A playoff spot is by no means a certainty. Collard seems to recognize this and sees Martinez as a difficult client.
“I really like Alex Martinez, he’s a really good lad. He’s tough, he’s brave, he hangs on. But I think he’s young in the sport, and I think I have an advantage in that aspect,” Collard said. “I’ve been in this for a long time and been doing this for a long time. I feel like it’s going to give me the edge, but I think he’s definitely one of the toughest guys in the division.
If he passes Martinez and makes the postseason, Collard doesn’t have much of a preference as to who meets him on the line, except for one name.
“We’ll see if Raush [Manfio] walk past this guy. I would love to fight Jeremy Stephens again, man. It was a bomb. His fighting style and my fighting style match very well, we just like to fight. It is against him that I would like to fight again.
Over the years, Collard has become one of the best mixed martial artists to get into boxing. But that’s on the back burner for now, it seems.
“I think I’m going to step away from boxing for a while. Not anymore, they want me to fight these top dudes and unless I’m only training boxing, that’s hard to do – back and forth, back and forth. So I think right now I’m just focusing on mixed martial arts.
Could a confrontation with Jake Paul attract him? Only if it was in MMA. “James Paul? I would say to him, ‘let’s fight MMA’ so I can kick that fool in the head.”
Watch Clay Collard’s full appearance on PFL 4 media day above. The event will take place this Friday, June 17, 2022 in Atlanta, GA.