One On One: With the UFC’s Daron Cruickshank

Daron Cruickshank is a rising star in the UFC, and he proudly puts on for Detroit in every fight. For those living under a rock, he goes by the nickname “The Detroit Superstar”. Cruickshank co-owns and operates Michigan Top Team; one of the premier MMA fight teams and gyms in the entire state. Cruickshank is all about representing Detroit, and that’s just part of the reason he’s one of Michigan’s top MMA stars.

Cruickshank most recently took part in a clash with UFC veteran K.J. Noons, which ended in a disappointing no contest. Noons caught Cruickshank with a devastating eye poke, and he was not able to finish the fight. However, until that point, Cruickshank was absolutely dominating the fight. His punches were landing, and he wasn’t giving Noons anything to work with. Cruickshank looked as athletic as ever, and he looked to be cruising toward victory from the very beginning of the fight.

I was fortunate enough to be able to discuss the Noons incident with Daron Cruickshank, among other things. Fear not, he will be returning to the cage sooner than we all thought, but only after needing surgery to repair his damaged eye. Here is what Cruickshank had to say about his last fight, and his future in the UFC:

TN: First things first. How is your eye healing? And do you have an idea of when you will be back in action?

Cruickshank: The eye it self is great. No damage, but I no longer have a tear duct in my left eye. I would like to be back in action in late February or March. But nothing in stone yet.

TN: Even though your last bout ended in a no decision, were you confident in your performance in the end? Any positives, or even negatives, that you’ll be looking at before you fight again?

Cruickshank: I’m huge in keeping a positive attitude. So yes, I believe I was just warming up in the last fight, and I know I was going to win hands down. As far as the future, I’m ready to get back to hard training. I love being in the cage, and I can’t wait to be back.

TN: You looked really comfortable in the Noons fight. Do you have any hesitation to get back in the cage with him again? Would you feel comfortable with a rematch given the way the first fight ended?

Cruickshank: Yes I would. I feel it would go the same way. I would get the better of him in every exchange and confuse him.

TN: The UFC’s lightweight division is packed with talent. Where do you see yourself among your competitors? Would you be willing to fight the champion Anthony Pettis if called on?

Cruickshank: I have had a few speed bumps in my career to the top. But I have learned from them each and every time. I’m ready and willing to fight anyone the UFC wants me to fight.

There you have it. Daron Cruickshank is a man on a mission. I know I wouldn’t want to be the man locked in a cage with him. Cruickshank is bound and determined to tare up the lightweight division, and Detroit will be right there rooting for him along the way.

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