UFC light heavyweight Johhny Walker seems to be a firm believer of the saying ‘hard training, easy fight.’ After having his camp at SBG Ireland, the Brazilian feels ready to take on former title challenger Thiago Santos, due to the hellish experience he went through in Dublin.
In an interview with Combate, Walker said he expects nothing but complete aggression from Santos, otherwise he will be underwhelmed because of his hard preparation, Despite calling it such a difficult experience, Johnny believes he was able to evolve quite a deal as a fighter during this time and hopes to show it next Saturday.
“I’ve brought in some guys from Bellator, like Fabian Edwards,” Walker said. “We had some other heavier guys at the gym, too. It was a tough camp, I’ve lived through hell. Every week I’d go through the gates of hell two, three times. I would open them, walk in, stay there and come out. It was crazy. I hope Thiago takes me to hell, so I can feel at home. John Kavanagh helped me so much. He connects me with the people I need. Nutritinionists, personal trainers, boxing coach. The guy fixed my life and you’ll see the result on Saturday.”
Now paired up against a dangerous striker in Santos, Walker knows he must be careful, but not too cautious. After getting caught by Ryan Spann in his last outing and almost losing the fight, Johnny now believes in a fine balance between offense and defense in order to find the win.
“I wasn’t so cautious in my last fight,” Walker said. “I ate a punch and got dropped on my butt. I wasn’t cautious, I was desperate to win because I was coming off two losses. I had to find a way to knock him out. I’ll be moving more now, I’ll be feeling more comfortable, it’s five rounds, so let’s go. If he comes at me fast, I’ll be ready. But if he takes it slow, we’ll feel out the pace of the fight, see how it goes.”
“Marreta is very aggressive,” Walker continued. “He knocks guys out. I think he’s going to be really aggressive. But he has to be cautious, too, because I’m also aggressive. Whoever lands first will drop the other guy. Let’s see who’s better prepared, smater and more agile.”
In his last outing, Walker (18-5) knocked out Ryan Spann in the first round, in September 2020. The victory snapped a two-fight losing skid for the 29-year-old, who had suffered losses to Nikita Krylov and Corey Anderson.
Now, Walker is expected to take on Santos at UFC Vegas 38’s main event, on October 2. The card is scheduled to take place at the UFC Apex, in Las Vegas, Nevada.