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Stephen Thompson: I need to be more aggressive instead of counterpunching

After a few controversial decision verdicts under his belt, Stephen Thompson recognizes the need to change up his fighting style.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Liverpool: Thompson vs Till Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports

Two-time UFC welterweight title contender Stephen Thompson is coming off a controversial unanimous decision loss against Darren Till in late May in Liverpool, England. Prior to that, “Wonderboy” has had his fair share of other debatable verdicts.

Many attribute it to his fighting style, which is still heavily rooted to his point-fighting Karate background. It is something that Wonderboy himself recognizes and plans to change up in future fights.

“There’s always something you can work on, but just change some stuff up,” Thompson told MMAjunkie. “Work different techniques that I’ve been wanting to work on a whole lot more, than I don’t usually throw when I fight. Just to keep them guessing. My last few losses were controversial. I’ve got to do more. I can’t leave it in the judge’s hands anymore.”

“Sometimes people say, ‘You’ve got to go out there and grit your teeth and just throw,’” he continued. “That’s never been my style, but I think I need to be a little bit more aggressive instead of counterpunching. There are other parts of the game I can go work on to keep my opponent guessing.

Thompson believes he also has other weapons in his arsenal apart from his striking, and it is something he plans to showcase the next time he steps inside the Octagon.

“I’m definitely going to work on some techniques that hopefully will throw my opponents off and really allow me to open up whenever I’m out there fighting. I’m definitely going to work on my wrestling and jiu-jitsu a little more and you never know,” said Thompson, who holds a brown belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

“The next fight you may see a little bit more of that. I work it religiously, but when I’m out there fighting I just don’t use it enough. I’ve got to go out there and use some of that. I’m a better, well-rounded fighter than people think.”

After his loss to Till, the 35-year-old Thompson dropped three spots to number four at the UFC’s official welterweight rankings.

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