In a strange way, Anthony Pettis & # 39; s movement down to spring weight led to his possible movement all the way up to the weights.
Pettis, the former UFC lightweight champion, moved down to featherweight to challenge temporary title against Max Holloway in 2016. Holloway won the third round of TKO, but Pettis lost more than one match that night in Toronto. His health was affected for a long time afterwards, and he could still still face the effects.
"By 45 I was really really bad," Pettis MMA Fighting told. "I only did it for the title. I thought if I could be a champ in another division, let's do it. But it was really hard on my body, man. It took me a couple of months before I could even digest my When I ate, I just felt that I was in constant constipation, I did not like digesting my food, it just kept everything, I just saw fat and looked lumpy, I'm not usually a fat guy. I think weight loss just hurts my body. "
Pettis, 32, went back to 1
What pushed "Showtime" to 170 pounds for the first time in 11 years was his UFC 229 loss for Tony Ferguson last October. Pettis took that fight in five weeks, and he said he felt he couldn't even train for it – all he could do was prepare his body for weight loss.
Then Pettis told his long-standing coach Duke Roufus, who has never been a fan of weight cutting, that he wanted to move up to the weights. Stephen Thompson, a fellow player, represented a fascinating stylistic matchup.
"I already know the skill level is there," said Pettis. "I just need to get that energy back to where it should be. I think the weight loss has a lot to do with it. I told Duke I wanted to fight at 170, we looked at the router. & # 39; Wonderboy "sensible. Rated # 4 in the world. If I want to try it, I might as well do it right."
There was another reason for the divisional jump. Pettis said he believes the lightweight division is in a "logjam" and he plans to stay active in 2019. And if he wins over Thompson, the opportunities at 170 will be very exciting. Especially since Pettis' teammate Woodley lost the welterweight title to Kamaru Usman at UFC 235 earlier this month, the potential door opens to Showtime.
Having lived through this training camp without having to worry about a weight reduction, Pettis sounded like a new man in a fighting week. At some point during the phone call, Pettis had to stand up to pick up food that was delivered to him. The luxury of a person who does not have to starve and dry himself, leading up to a can of struggle.
"The greatest is mental," said Pettis. "Your brain is not foggy because you are dehydrated. You are not zapped by your energy. You can train. I have the energy to get ready for this fight."
Pettis (21-8) also no longer needs to worry about getting in the cage with someone who will try to grind a decision with wrestling or struggling. Thompson, a karatefighter, is a person Pettis, a former taekwondo star, eager to test his maturity against. Pettis has a ton of respect for "Wonderboy" and what he has done in the roll-over department.
"My style has been prevented by the wrestling, and I think he adjusted it well," said Pettis. "He made these guys fighting with his style, on his reach. He has great takedown defense. And he's not like an offensive breaker. So I think it leaves us with a stand-up fight. A whole lot of ninja shit will happen – spins, jumps, flashy kicks. For us, it's normal. It's not like we're trying to be flashy. It's just how we fight. "
And unlike those who usually fight with Thompson , Pettis doesn't think he'll be shocking.
"I just feel that there is not much he can do for me" Said pettis "Since kicking, the round kicks I have seen so many times. He will throw straight bumps and try to get my head on To lean back to the traditional round kick. It's offspeed, that's why it throws all those kickboxers out. Nobody throws those kind of kicks in sparring, because they are kickboxers usually sparring with us. "
The move to weights may not be permanent, says Pettis. But time was right, and it was also the opponent. This should be fun, especially without weight. "Showtime" becomes "Showtime". And that's good for everyone involved.
"I was ready for battle in this camp," Pettis said. "I wasn't ready for a weight cut. The results will show."