Franklin Set for Second New Beginning

Rich Franklin weighs-in for UFC 72: Victory. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

With yet another devastating loss to Anderson Silva now behind him once again, former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin is ready to start over for the second year in a row.

Despite his heart pleading with him for a third chance at Silva, Franklin must now use his mind and focus on a new opponent that brings very little familiarity with him in the form of Travis Lutter. With trainer Matt Hume now working with Franklin full time, one of the Cincinnati sports scene’s biggest supporters has a so-called master strategist at his side.

“I don’t feel that I had enough time to work with Matt Hume going into the Silva fight,” Franklin said during a recent media conference call. “If I had more time with him things could have been different but I can’t worry about that now. Going into this fight against Travis, who obviously is a great fighter and presents a solid challenge, we’ve developed a good gameplan and I’m excited to be able to execute it.”

Franklin and Lutter are in similar situations. Both are coming off of losses to Silva. However where Franklin has been physically handled in both of his fights against the Brazilian, Lutter actually thrived and impressed many in a fight that cost him a shot at Silva’s belt due to weight cutting issues.

“I’m training for a fighter that is a completely different fighter than I’ve seen in a while,” Franklin said. “As much as I’d like to improve the mistakes I made against Silva, I can’t think about that right now. Travis gave Silva hell in their fight so I have to be prepared for what he brings to the table. It’ll be an interesting clash of styles and I’m excited to get back in there.”

While the city of Montreal provides a new scene to showcase his skills in, Franklin admits that he actually enjoys fighting in places that he never has before. Oddly enough, the former champion is excited to not be fighting in his home state of Ohio, where he had fought two out of his last three bouts.

“I’m pretty excited to go to Montreal,” said Franklin. “To be honest, I’m really not too fond of fighting in my home state as it provides a whole new level of distractions. However I’ve been part of the UFC’s first venture to Ohio and their first venture to Ireland so I’m definitely excited to fight in Montreal and in another new atmosphere.”

Staying with their professional demeanors, both Franklin and Lutter have been relatively quiet when it comes to laying down any predictions on their showdown, unlike their counterparts that will serve in UFC 83’s main event. However Franklin promises that Lutter is the only fighter on his mind right now and that focus should help things go in his favor Saturday night.

“I’m not looking past Travis,” said Franklin. “I’m not thinking about anything in regards to my career past this fight to be honest. I’ve done so much worrying in the past about what road I was going to travel and that kind of thinking is done for me. Thanks to Matt Hume, who brings an outside eye into my camp, I have a new outlook going into my fights. I think it’ll translate into success.”


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