- TUF Smashes
Ross Pearson fuelled by anger against Sotiropoulos
The latest episode of TUF Smashes: UK v Australia will be screened on ESPN at midnight on Wednesday
Ross Pearson has never entered a fight angry in his life, but he cannot wait to get hold of George Sotiropoulos at the conclusion of the TUF Smashes series, which has seen both men act as rival coaches between the UK and Australia.
Pearson and Sotiropoulos were charged with the task of leading their respective nations into battle, with 16 fighters sharing one house in pursuit of being crowned The Ultimate Fighter. The two winners of the lightweight and welterweight competitions earn six-figure UFC contracts.
As an offshoot of the show, which will undoubtedly yield new British UFC talent, Pearson has had to spend months in the company of his next opponent - Sotiropoulos - who Pearson claims needs a reality check.
"We didn't get on at all, we're two completely different people," Pearson told ESPN. "He's older than I am and was trying to be the father figure, like I was the younger kid and I should show him respect.
"I don't show anybody respect unless it's mutual. So I didn't like him and he didn't like me. The trash-talk has already begun and it's going to get a whole lot worse by December 14."
Pearson is a former winner of The Ultimate Fighter himself, and he has since carved out a career that has placed him in the upper echelons of the UFC featherweight division.
However, the Brit usually fights smart, relying on his skills inside the Octagon to do the talking that others do outside of it. Against Sotiropoulos, Pearson admits he will fight angry for the very first time.
"This will be the first time in my entire professional career that I go into the Octagon with emotion against my opponent. I really don't like this guy and I really want to hurt this guy.
"It's fuelling me in camp. I don't trash-talk people, I don't talk shit, but he's pissed me off. I wish December 14th was tomorrow."