Not many fighters in the world of mixed martial arts can claim to have fought in as many weight classes as Kenny Florian. The Boston native entered the UFC on the heels of the first season of The Ultimate Fighter, where he competed as a middleweight (185-pounds) on the show. He lost to Diego Sanchez on the shows finale and immediately dropped down to the welterweight division (170-pounds) for his actual UFC career.
Florian went on to defeat Alex Karalexis and Kit Cope before deciding to drop down yet again, this time to lightweight (155-pounds) where he made a name for himself with big wins over Joe Lauzon, Roger Huerta, Joe Stevenson, Clay Guida and Takanori Gomi. He lost to Sean Sherk for the vacant lightweight title in 2006 however, and after working his way up the ladder again, lost to B.J. Penn in another title fight in 2009. Now Florian has decided to try his hand at featherweight (145-pounds).
Needless to say, Florian has kept himself busy over the course of his career. Outside of simply training and fighting, he has become one of the most prominent crossover stars in mixed martial arts. The always articulate and well spoken Florian has been featured as an analyst for ESPN and even tried his hand at commenting for WEC and UFC events.
With all the distractions, it would be easy for Florian to skip training and undermine his performance inside the Octagon. He has made sure to not let that happen.
"I always had MMA as my number one priority," Florian told MMA Fight Corner presented by FiveKnuckles.com. "My training comes first, that's first and foremost. I try to keep it that way. As far as priorities go, it's really my training first, then comes my school and then ESPN."
As Florian has become one of the most well spoken and respected commentators in the sport, it was only right that he voice his opinion on the biggest thing in MMA right now: Jon Jones.
"Is he the best pound-for-pound? Not yet," Florian said. "He has the potential to be the greatest ever, I really believe that. I think Jon Jones could be the face of mixed martial arts. He has all the tools to be able to do it. I think it's a little too early to call him the best in MMA. He just hasn't faced the competition of a Georges St-Pierre or Anderson Silva."
Leaving his analyst position aside, Florian is currently gearing up for his first fight in the featherweight division. Fans have wondered if the already slender Florian will be able to get down to make the 145 pound limit for the division, but Florian doesn't see it being a problem. Although, he does admit that he is a little heavier than normal.
"I walk around, usually around 172," Florian said. "So I'm right around there right now. I got heavy because of my knee injury. I was out, I wasn't able to do anything as far as exercise. That was difficult."
While Florian has yet to even step on the scales as a featherweight, perennial title contender Chad Mendes has already stated his desire to fight Florian. In an earlier interview with the MMA Fight Corner,...