Wow, that was some night in Nottingham. An electric atmosphere turned out a great night of victories for the Brits fighting on the card with me. It was also my first knock out punch in the UFC.
The elation of winning with a ‘Knock Out of the Night’ still hasn’t faded. I’ve got the full set of bonuses now with ‘Fight of the Night’ and ‘Submission of the Night’ already in the bag. That’s also a 100% bonus record in the UFC that I’ll be looking to keep at 100%. I said before this fight, only good things will come from winning. Winning is always my priority but to do it in such a fashion was the cherry on the cake.
Before the fight I had a lot of problems and injuries. My hand wasn’t great at the start of the camp so I struggled to train stand up. Then I busted my rib so couldn’t do much groundwork. I had a few cuts and bruises to contend with and train around. All in all it was pretty terrible prep for a fighter like Yves Jabouin.
I’m very much a fighter that will train hard outside of camp too and I think that helped massively to compensate for any adaptions I had to make in camp. I also know from experience that I’d perform on the night, no matter what’s gone on leading up to the fight.
Nottingham was a bit less hectic than Birmingham so fight week was a bit easier to deal with. I wanted to put my loss in Birmingham behind me and give the UK fans a victory to shout about but knew Jabouin would be a dangerous opponent. Against Barao one of my biggest self-criticisms is that I was over eager with my striking when perhaps I needed to be more patient. I was definitely more selective with my shots this time around without being afraid to pull the trigger.
The crowd was fantastic after the fight and I spoke to Dana White briefly to make sure he knows that I want to fight again before the year is out. Who and if I fight is out of my hands and it’s not even strictly in the UFC’s hands as injuries and different results can all dictate the matchmaking. A lot will also depend on Dominic Cruz and how soon he can return to the division as that has the knock on effect of whether Renan Barao waits it out or fights again.
For me personally, I’ll need to step away from the crisps and the chocolate at some point in the near future and ease my way back into the gym. I’m taking a small break just to let my body recover and heal up a few small niggling injuries that just need some rest. Maintaining good year round fitness has always helped massively in camp so it won’t be too long before I’m back doing what I love best.
This weekend I’ll be at UCMMA taking a backseat. I’m really looking forward to a big night of fights there. I’m particularly excited about seeing Galore fight. I think he’s a natural athlete with a lot of potential. Also, I’ll be interested to see how Spencer Hewitt does in his Bantamweight clash.
Finally I’d just like to say thanks to a few people, my fiancée Sarah and brother Russell, Matt Walton my manager and the team at Spiked Athlete Management, my coaches at American Top Team, Team Titan and Five Star Health and Fitness, my sponsors Venum, Monkey Nutrition, Alienware, VIP Services, Topps Cards and G-Form.
Most importantly, thanks to the fans and all my followers. I really appreciate your support and hope I can continue to entertain you.