Charles Jourdain didn’t expect that less than two weeks after going nearly five rounds in stopping Damien Lapilus last month that he would be signing a UFC contract that kicks off with a Saturday bout against Desmond Green, but the fight game is unpredictable, and “Air” Jourdain didn’t hesitate to accept the life-changing opportunity.
“This is the UFC, this is a big deal and this is not something you take lightly and say there will be another opportunity,” he said. “This may be the only opportunity that I get, so I'll give everything I have and we'll see after this fight.”
Odds are that it won’t be the last time we’ll be seeing the talented Quebec native, whose 9-1 pro MMA record includes nine finishes and a pair of titles in the TKO promotion in Canada. In other words, Green might be the veteran and the hometown hero fighting in Rochester, but Jourdain isn’t showing up to pick up a paycheck and hope for the best.
“I'm so happy that I got my shot,” said Jourdain. “I know it's in his backyard, so if you look at the picture, it doesn't seem to be in my favor, but I took the opportunity and I will give everything I have.
As for being the “bad guy” in Green’s hometown, bring it on, says “Air” Jourdain.
“I always envisioned my UFC debut knowing that there would be a lot of people. I was excited by the fact that it was in Desmond's backyard because there's gonna be a lot of people and I need this kind of energy to perform. That's been my thing since I've been with TKO - jam-packed shows with all the media attention, and the more people, the more they're screaming, the better I perform. I need a crowd, I need this energy.”
And as laid-back as the 23-year-old is outside the Octagon, on fight night it’s a different story.
“Inside of there, I'm totally different,” he said. “My look changes, the way I act, the way I move. And the fact that all my fights have been by finishes, I'm not in there to score points and hope that the judges give me a victory. I'm the baddest man on the planet as far as I know when I'm inside of there.”
But when the fight’s over, it’s over, a lesson he learned from Canadian MMA icon Georges St-Pierre.
“I'll be very respectful,” said Jourdain. “I come from a new breed of fighter and we come from a new generation where we learned from our icons. I'm from Canada like Georges, and we learned that everything you need to do is inside the Octagon. Be nice, be respectful, but inside of there, it's me or you, and it's gonna be me.”
Sounds like Canada has a new star on the way.
“Maybe it will sound cliché, but the fans can expect fireworks,” he said. “I'm always moving, and I'm not the type of guy who is waiting for the judges to give me the victory. Every single second I'm hunting for your head, I'm hunting for a finish. I have plenty of energy and I'm willing to prove this to the UFC fans.”