MMA Mania's main man Brian Hemminger recently conducted a really good interview with British bantamweight Brad Pickett, who will be fighting Renan Barao in the co-main event of this Saturday's UFC 138 card in Birmingham, England. It will be Pickett's UFC debut, but he's a WEC veteran with wins over the likes of recent title challenger Demetrious Johnson and Ivan Menjivar. In the interview, Pickett discusses fighting in front of his home crowd, his long layoff, and how he thinks he matches up with his opponent. He starts with talking about fighting in the UK again:
: Yeah, it's gonna be great for me. I haven't fought there in a while. My last fights were with the WEC in America and I've got a lot of friends and family who all love to watch me fight who couldn't really afford to pay for plane tickets to come and watch me fight in America. Obviously, my brother came out and stuff like that but now, fighting back in the UK, it gives a lot of opportunity for all my friends I went to school with to come and watch me fight and they haven't seen me fight in a long time.
Brad Pickett: I was really looking forward to that fight with Miguel Torres but obviously it wasn't meant to be. I got injured and it sucks being injured. Being a fighter, all you want to do is fight and being injured, you don't want time off. Your job is MMA. In theory, I haven't had any income for 11 months so taking that time off is not always good for you. You want to get back in there. I feel I'm good now. I had a great camp. I had really good treatment from a guy in England, a guy named Neil who did wonders on my back and a doctor in America when I was out there training there. In my eyes, if it wasn't for them, maybe I wouldn't be fighting today so I owe a lot to them and I'm very grateful that those men helped me out and I'm fighting. I'm very happy.
He then describes why he how he will win the fight against Barao:
Brad Pickett: Just by being a better athlete. I think I'm more physical, I have better physical attributes than him. I think I'm stronger, faster and all that. Skill doesn't sometimes come into it. When you mix in punches and all that, sometimes it's just that the better athletes will beat each other and I'm skilled along with that. I think I hit hard and even mentally, I'm in the right place in my life for this fight and I don't think this is his time yet. He's young and I think you'll see my style of man beast will definitely come through. If you want me to say, knockout, submission, whatever, I'll be doing my best to keep my pace that I put on in the fight and I'll be in an, "I don't care, you hit me I'll hit you back," kind of attitude. You can break some people down mentally sometimes and I view this fight that way. Maybe it will be a fighter's fight, I can go in, throw a couple punches, slip over and roll into a triangle, it can happen, but if I fight like how I can fight and things go according to plan, I should definitely come away with a victory.
You can catch the rest of the interview here, which goes into a bunch of other stuff. It's the most informative interview with Pickett I've ever read, and Hemminger did a really good job with it. Go check it out.