Ok, let’s get this out of the way early. Montana was the 41st state in the union. Montana is the only state with a triple divide that allows water to flow into the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean and Hudson Bay. It’s the fourth largest state in land mass, and has less than a million people in it. One of those people is Lloyd “Cupcake” Woodard and he makes his National debut Saturday night on MTV2 as part of Bellator’s Lightweight Tournament.
Lloyd Woodard will bring his unspoiled 10-0 record into the Bellator lightweight tournament this weekend and in doing so, steps onto the big stage for the first time in his career. Lloyd has long been known in Montana, where he’s from, but for the most part he’s been under the radar to the nation of MMA fans and its media. That will all change Saturday night as he enters the cage to face Carey Vanier (8-2) in the opening round of the 2011 Bellator Lightweight tournament.
Lloyd’s been traveling to fights for a while, but this one is a little different. It’ll be his first time on national television, fighting for a big promotion and with a chance at big money. Lloyd said, “It means a lot to be here. You know, it’s something I wanted to do, so I talked to Monte (Cox) about it. I told him, Bellator is an upcoming league and I love the tournament format.” When asked about the opportunity at hand, Lloyd was excited at the prospects. “If I win this tournament I can fight for a title. If I can win this, and beat Eddie Alvarez then I’m top ten. I’m really looking forward to it.”
He’s not looking past anyone though, and is keenly focused on his first opponent, Carey Vanier. “He’s a good fighter, a really good wrestler. He takes his shot from so far away I don’t know how he lands them, but he does. He’s patient and I’m really looking forward to fighting him. I have nothing bad to say about him. I don’t really ever have anything bad to say, I respect my opponents because they all fight, you know?”
Lloyd is currently under the management of Monte Cox. Lloyd met Monte when he traveled to Extreme Challenge in Council Bluffs, Iowa to meet local standout, Alonzo Martinez. After submitting Alonzo in the first, he and Monte began working together.
For those of you who have never seen Lloyd fight, here’s what he says you can expect to see. “Expect me to go out there and fight and entertain. I like to get the job done and get things rolling. It will be a good fight; I’ll fight my hardest and best and do what I love.” He’s not a guy who will put on boring fights. “I’m definitely not going to stare at him for three rounds; it’s a fight, not into a staring contest.”
Woodard respects all the fighters in this tourney, but he’d love to face them all. “All the guys would be fun to fight; I’d like to face them all one by one if I could. I didn’t get to see a lot of their fights. I don’t know everything about them, but Bellator has a good eye for talent.” When I asked who he’d really like to fight if he could in this tournament he added, “Razor Rob number one, because if I stood with him and banged it out and won people would know my hands are good. Plus he’s well known so it’d be good exposure. Number 2, would be Toby Imada because he’s exciting and a scrapper. I want to be in good fights like that.”
Lloyd is fighting on a massive stage and you can bet a great many people from Montana will be watching. He wanted to say thank you to “The Dog Pound, where I train” and give a special shout out “To Montana, because I love that place.” Those of us, who’ve lived there, love it too. Before we let him go, we had to get clarification on his nickname, “Cupcake.”
Lloyd had this to say, “When I was getting ready for my first fight, we were coming up with nicknames. My coach (Matt Powers) said, how about Pretty Boy, like Pretty Boy Flloyd instead of Lloyd. I said that was lame, so he said, nevermind, I put down Cupcake. So after the fight they announced me as Cupcake and well received. I’m trying to change the perception of the word. From all sweet to hardcore!”
Lloyd Woodard is one hardcore Cupcake.