With three losses in his last four fights, Joe (Daddy) Stevenson is feeling some heat heading into Saturday's showdown with Nate Diaz.
But he says he's dealing with it.
"Honestly there is a little bit of pressure there but when I see it, I kind of just roll it up in my fingers and throw it away," he said in an interview.
"I want the win and I train for the win, but I'm not going to add any more pressure onto myself than I already do," he added.
The Diaz fight, on the Season 9 finale of "The Ultimate Fighter" card at The Palms in Las Vegas (Spike TV, Rogers Sportsnet, check local listings Saturday) is a matchup of winners of Season 2 (Stevenson) against Season 5 (Diaz).
Coming off consecutive losses to elite opposition in Diego Sanchez and Kenny Florian, Stevenson (34-10) is now training with renowned coach Greg Jackson in Albuquerque, N.M. He credits Jackson for helping him look forward not back.
"Honestly anyone can come off two (losses) and feel like crap. The trick is not to let yourself get down," he said. "It's continuous ups and downs, hills and valleys. If you let it bug you, I'm sure no good can come from it.
"Greg's actually put me in a great environment and it's out of my mind."
Stevenson, a California native who celebrated his 27th birthday Monday, promises to showcase a more diverse game Saturday.
"There was a lot that I wasn't doing that I plan on doing now," explained the jiu-jitsu black belt. "I think the fans are going to see a lot of the old me.
"It happens to a lot of us fighters. When we're really good at one thing, we just want to get better at another and we kind of focus on that in the fights. And that kind of brings about a whole different type of fighting. Whereas now I think I'm going to be more apt to doing everything the whole time rather than focus on one thing at a time."
He acknowledges perhaps focusing on his striking too much recently.
"Striking is very important but you've got to remember what got you there."
Ask Stevenson about his camp for the Diaz fight and he says he had an "awesome everything" - even if he had to leave his wife and four sons at home. He reckons the sacrifice will pay off Saturday, pointing to Jackson as the difference.
"Having someone like Greg Jackson in your corner is kind of unfair. It's like having Chuck Norris in your corner. That confidence alone is pretty good too."
He plans to continue working with Jackson, whose roster includes Canadian Georges St. Pierre, Rashad Evans, Keith Jardine, Nate Marquardt and Shane Carwin, "as long as I'm fighting."