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UFC Fight Night:

Mike Pyle ready to prove he belongs in the UFC

After losing his debut at UFC 98 on short notice, Xtreme Couture fighter ‘100-percent’ ready for Chris Wilson

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UFC

Mike Pyle, right, looks to secure a submission hold against Brock Larson at UFC 98 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 23, 2009. Pyle lost his UFC debut to Larson by first-round submission.

Ultimate Fight Night 19

  • Who: Co-main event Nate Diaz vs. Melvin Guillard, Roger Huerta vs. Gray Maynard; undercard includes Carlos Condit vs. Jake Ellenberger, Nate Quarry vs. Tim Credeur, Steve Cantwell vs. Brian Stann, Mike Pyle vs. Chris Wilson
  • When: 8 p.m. Wednesday (tape delayed on West Coast)
  • Where: Where: Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City
  • TV: Spike TV (Cable Channel 29)

Mike Pyle makes no excuses for his first performance in the Octagon, but there are plenty of reasons why his UFC debut didn’t go as he planned.

“I actually had been in Bulgaria for a month and a half shooting a movie. I wasn’t in the gym. I wasn’t ready for battle, but I took it anyway,” said Pyle, who lost in the first round to Brock Larson at UFC 98 in May after returning from filming for “Universal Soldier: A New Beginning,” starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren.

“The UFC called eight days out to ask if I would do it and of course I said yes. I knew the odds were stacked against me. No training camp and all that, but I wasn’t going to pass the opportunity up.”

Cutting 23 pounds in a week to get to the 170-pound welterweight limit took a toll on the 33-year-old Xtreme Couture fighter.

“I wasn’t able to make it to the weigh-ins. I actually went down in the back. I had to have medical attention,” said Pyle, who did make weight, but didn’t take the stage at the MGM Grand. “It was tough. To try to recover from that and being out of shape, it just wasn’t cool. But this time is a whole different story.”

Pyle, who faces Chris Wilson (the same man he filled in for at UFC 98) this Wednesday at Ultimate Fight Night 19 in Oklahoma City, said he is 100-percent ready for his second go in the Octagon.

“This time around, this guy is in trouble. I’ve been training hard. I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in. I’m super ready now,” said Pyle, who sports a 17-6-1 overall MMA record and has fought for the WEC, Affliction, Strikeforce, Elite XC and the IFL.

“I have a complete camp, nine weeks I’ve trained for this one. I’m beyond prepared for this fight.”

A loss for either Pyle or Wilson (2-1 UFC), who wasn’t able to fight in May because of a mix-up with medical tests with the Nevada Athletic Commission, could put a quick end to their UFC dreams. But Pyle is only looking at the positives.

“I’ve been in this game for a very long time, many, many years. I’ve never gotten the chance to get in the UFC,” Pyle said. “I can’t say that I’ve pursued it with everything I had. But I’m getting the chance again to go in there and prove myself.

“And prove what a force I can be at 170. I’m very thankful for the opportunity, it’s gonna be awesome.”

So, too, will another fall event, one that Pyle jokingly admits that a full training camp can’t prepare him for.

“Yeah, I’m getting married in October. I think I’ll be more nervous getting up there than jumping into the cage,” he said with a laugh.

Andy Samuelson can be reached at [email protected] or 702-948-7837.

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