You’ve had a few months to reflect since your loss to Josh Reed. How do you look back on that night?
Looking back on that night many things stand out to me, but my main concern is my patience. In my opinion I was too eager to exchange with Josh, I could have timed my strikes a lot better and used shots to soften him up before moving forward, however I went forward and Josh did a great job to land a clean strike that wobbled me and capitalise from there. I made mistakes that I have since revised, but I’ll take nothing away from Josh.
You come into this Saturday’s fight on a 3 fight losing streak. Have you changed anything up for this fight?
I have since increased my weight training, and I have been eating clean too (loosely sticking to a Paleo based diet). I’m fortunate that my team mate Dan Kneil – who is also competing on this card – is a personal trainer and really clued up on nutritional needs, so we have spent this whole camp together training smart and eating right too. I’m also taking this fight heavier at 150lbs as I’m finding I was too depleted at 135 and 140 so this time you’ll see a more energetic version of myself in the cage.
You regularly visit and train at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento. Have you spoken to any of the guys there since your defeat for any words of encouragement/advice?
I haven’t spoken to them about the fight, I’m moving past that loss now and onto the future for my career and other opponents. However I have spoken to the guys at Team Alpha Male about my next trip and I have successfully organised it for November 17th. They told me that they are relocating to a huge 17,000 square feet facility that will be opening in 2 weeks. I’m really excited to get out there and test out the shiny new mats.
You fight Liam Bennett this Saturday at BUDO Championships in Swansea. Do you know much about Liam? What are his strengths and how do you predict the fight going?
What I’ve seen of Liam he likes to come out explosive and the fight is usually over within a round, either in his favour or not. Saturday I’m setting the pace and I’m controlling the fight, I don’t see the fight going past five minutes. I’ve honestly not felt this good on fight week.
What upcoming fights are you most excited for?
I’m excited for Cody Garbrandt vs Dominick Cruz, mainly because I’ll be in Cody’s camp to get punched in the face and help him prepare. And a few of my teammates are fighting on Cage Warriors in Wales on October 15. I’ll be straight back in the gym helping them prepare so I’m really excited for them fights too. Keep an eye out for Daryl Grant and Toby Hartman on that explosive card.
What did you make of the whole CM Punk fiasco?
I get what it is, he’s a money draw. I work the doors in the night and everyone that came up to me that evening was only watching that card to see CM Punk. The UFC used his name as a business move, but for me as an athlete in this sport it ruins it for me and makes what we are doing look like a bit of a circus.
If you could play Matchmaker and put ONE fight together for a mega-event, who would you put together and why?!
I would make Donald Cerrone vs Robbie Lawler because we got teased with it recently before Lawler got injured. I just believe that would be an epic match up full of fireworks.
If MMA was outlawed and you were forced to find another career, what would it be and why?
If MMA was outlawed I would most likely carry on where I left off in education and go to university to pursue one of the many sporting avenues that are available, or join the military as that’s a stable & often rewarding career.
What famous person that you don’t like would you want to be put in a cage with & why?!
It takes a lot for me to dislike a person but I would have to say Sam Smith, every time his music comes on I want to wring someone’s neck. And no before you ask I’m not using him for my walkout song.
If you could pick any famous person to corner you, who would it be and why?!
I would pick Gordon Ramsey just to hear the profanity in his advice from the corner.
And finally (and most importantly) do you still FeelTheTip?!!
I always Feel The Tip.
Best of luck this Saturday Ben.
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