Life is filled with a pattern of uncertainties. Plain and simple, you never know what’s going to happen next. One moment you’re on top of the world and in a blink of an eye, it could all be gone. Nothing is guaranteed in life, except for today. Not tomorrow and certainly not the next day.

For Jake Ellenberger, a drastic change occurred just as he was slated to meet Johny Hendricks in arguably the biggest bout of his professional career. A Rory MacDonald injury later, Hendricks moved to fight Carlos Condit, while Ellenberger was told he’d now meet Nate Marquardt in an electrifying showdown at UFC 158 in Canada on Saturday, March 16. For Ellenberger, it may come across as a slight disappointment, but it’s yet another opportunity to showcase his top-tier skills in the world’s top promotion.

“To be honest, I was really looking forward to the Hendricks fight,” Ellenberger said in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “He’s a great opponent, and I was excited for that fight.

“You can’t let things like that bother you, you know? You can’t let that consume your mind and hold you back from fighting to your full potential. It’s not like I’m being handed an easy opponent now that the fight with Hendricks is off. [Marquardt] is a great opponent who’s shown his well-rounded skills for a long time. You got to keep your focus and keep fighting whoever is placed in front of you.”

Ellenberger (L) in the gym (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

After losing just one fight in the last three years, “The Juggernaut” will look to continue his climb up the steep welterweight ladder. While many in Ellenberger’s position may be set on capturing gold, he knows in the right time, at the right place, his moment will eventually come.

“You can’t fully prepare for a fight when your mind is somewhere else. Of course, I would love to have a shot at the title. Who wouldn’t? But if I spend all my time focusing on getting a title shot, I’m taking my focus away from a great opponent that I have to fight first. I definitely feel that I’m feeling better than ever. The only way you can find your way to the top is by showing consistency,” Ellenberger said. “That’s what I want to do, and it will all take care of itself.

“We’re living in a world where we think we deserve this or we think we deserve that. The funny thing is, we don’t deserve anything. Everything we have is everything we’ve earned. When I fight Nate, I will need to prove that I am the better fight. He’s one of the best in the world. We’ve both earned this opportunity.

“This fight is just one step closer to getting me to where I want to be.”

Top Photo: Jake Ellenberger (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

  • Ellenberger brought it on Saturday! That was an amazing fight!