New England based UFC light heavyweight, Mike Rodriguez (10-4), is coming off two unexpected performances inside of the octagon. In his most recent contest, he was finished by Da Un Jung at UFC on ESPN+ 23.
Rodriguez talked with us about his disappointment regarding that fight and why it may have happened.
“I underestimated him I am not going to lie. In my last two fights, I was out to lunch. I just was too busy worried about things that were going on versus focus on my fight. I was completely distracted I dropped the ball on that, I didn’t take him seriously is what it was.”
We asked Mike to elaborate on what he means by this.
“Some things in my personal life, I was going through a bunch of things last year. I was 40% in mentally I just was always somewhere else”. Rodriguez continued “I was dragging ass on everything. My coaches put me in the best position to win and twice I just dropped the ball”.
Rodriguez talked about what life has been like during the pandemic and what he has been doing the past seven months since we last saw him compete inside the octagon.
“I started a charity tournament of modest needs. I was streaming a lot, I was doing a lot of things that I never had the time to do before because I was always training. It helped me get the love back for training and now I am starting to train all the time. It’s cool because it helped me reignite the fire”.
“Slo” Mike even opened up about his depression after posting about a book recently on social media.
“If you think it, you feel it, and if you change your mindset on how you view the world, yourself, things of that nature you will feel better about things”.
Rodriguez continued “It is just like anything else you’ve just gotta grind and keep getting on it and get better. It is easier said than done you just gotta be willing to put in the work to change those things”.
Now Rodriguez turns his full attention to getting back into the win column on August 22nd. Mike explained why he believes this fight is his to lose.
“I know that my pressure and just me being a southpaw is going to be very hard for him to deal with. The two losses he had were against southpaws and he had obviously a nightmare experience against both of them and I’ll tell you I’m a better southpaw then both of them. I know I am going to have a lot better tools and I’m gonna have everything to stop whatever he’s gonna throw out there. I feel like I am gonna get him out of there in the first round”.
Mike also feels the urgency to win this fight as it is the last fight on his current UFC contract.
“This is actually the last fight on my contract so if the stars align, I wanna win this fight take some time off and then be back again. I just don’t want too much time in between my fights I want to squeeze at least three fights in a year”.