Rafael Natal has had his ups and downs in his four-year, 11 fight UFC career.  Thus far, he has compiled a record of 6-4-1 and has not been able to pick up any type of momentum or string together a significant win streak.  Natal recently suffered back to back losses for the first time in his career against Tim Kennedy and Ed Herman and looked like a shaken fighter. However, at UFC Fight Night: Jacare vs. Mousasi, Natal was able to rebound with a split decision over a very tough Chris Camozzi.  At UFC 183, Natal will look to get his second win in a row as he faces Tom Watson.

“I have my confidence back now. I know that I can be a top five fighter in the UFC. I have been training hard, training my striking and my Jiu Jitsu and training everything, and I really feel like I have my confidence back and I look forward to showing what I can do.”

Natal is certainly going to need more than confidence if he is going to get past Watson because he, too, is looking to work his way up the ladder. “He has no weakness, he is good everywhere.  I am going to have to be my best in this fight.  Nobody in the UFC has any weakness, but I think that I am better than he is in most areas and I am going to win this fight.”

Natal’s confidence in this fight doesn’t mean he is looking past Watson, but Natal is looking to the future, “I would like to fight for times this year.  If I can stay healthy and have good training, I would like to get four fights.  If I go 4-0 and I feel that I will be a top five fighter.  I would like to fight for the title.”

While Natal stated that he didn’t care who he fought for the title if he was given the opportunity, he did say that he was looking forward to the middleweight title fight between champion Chris Weidman and challenger Vito Belfort, “I think this will be a good fight.  I think both fighters are better than the other in ways and that both fighters can beat the other one.  I am looking forward to seeing how Vitor fights without TRT.  What kind of fighter will he be?  That’s what I want to see, but I think that this will be a good fight.”

Watson will not be the toughest, most skilled, or most experienced fighter that Natal has faced in his UFC career, but he certainly won’t be a pushover and Natal knows that if he is going to move up the ladder, it all starts at UFC 183, “Everything that I want to do with my career starts with me beating Tom.  In order for me to prove that I am a top 5 fighter, I have to win.”

Natal is certainly going to have his hands full at UFC 183 with Watson but isn’t that reason that you tune in, to see exciting fights?  Make sure you watch UFC 183, because Rafael Natal promises to show the fans the best Rafael Natal that you have ever seen.

About The Author

Josh Davis
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Josh Davis is the owner and President of The MMA Corner, LLC. He has been a fan of mixed martial arts since seeing UFC 1 in his hometown. In addition to his The MMA Corner responsibilities, Josh is the editor of Scrapp! Fight Magazine. Josh has also written for MMA Unleashed and MMA Sports magazines. Josh also manages some of Colorado's best up and coming fighters and is dedicated to the positive promotion of the sport.