“After I lost to Joe Lauzon (UFC Live 4), I fell into this really heavy depression,” explains lightweight fighter Curt Warburton ahead of his fight with Lee Wieczorek at BAMMA 10 on September 15th. “I got released from UFC and my head wasn’t in the right place.”
That was in June 2011 and, as he heads into the final two weeks of preparation for his next fight, Warburton details how much has changed for him since that defeat.
“I had a lot of people around me who were telling me what to do, what not to do, what to change, how to fight and all that had to stop,” explains the lightweight. “I’ve changed training camps now and have learned that I have to listen to my head and my body and do what is best for me and not what somebody else thinks.”
“Fighters need to learn that the pressure is all on them when it comes to training and fighting” comments Warburton. “There are a lot of good people but also a lot of bad people in MMA and the one thing I’ve learned is that, if you win, they all want to jump on the bandwagon but, if you lose, they can’t get away quick enough. I think I was naïve going into the fight with Joe Lauzon and soon had to learn who I should trust and who I shouldn’t.”
Heading into the Wieczorek fight with an impressive record of three wins and no defeats since the UFC bout, there is a healthy air of confidence about Warburton as he discusses his preparation for the contest.
“I always work on my weight cuts before fights but there is something different this time. I feel fitter, I have more energy and I’m feeling really good about myself. I’ve also been working on my footwork as, if you look at my previous fights, I tend to be a bit of a brawler so I’m hoping this will work to my advantage against Lee as he looks quite big.”
With this new training regime putting the fighter at the top of his game, Warburton found time to head to the States for a two week training camp at Alliance. Recalling the camp he laughs, “It was good training out there. They didn’t do things that much different to how things are done in the UK but they had some good lightweights and I picked up a few new sneaky little moves.”
“I’m mixing it up a lot now so I’m happy for this fight to go whichever way it goes,” admits the MMA veteran. “I feel so much better as a fighter these days because I am doing things the way I want to do things. That is not meant to be disrespectful to the guys at Wolfslair Academy, who were great, but I’m back home with my family and I’m fighting the way I want to fight.”
So, with two weeks to go, conversation turns back to his opponent, Lee Wieczorek. “Lee seems like a decent guy although I don’t know that much about him” confesses Warburton. “He’s been quite respectful and hasn’t talked shit which a lot of people do these days before a fight. I think we’re evenly matched in terms of our records but, while I don’t mind going the distance, I’d be quite happy to finish this one off quickly.”
“I know this is his first fight on BAMMA so I hope that we can both put on a good fight for the fans. I’d also like to wish Lee all the best for the future after this fight but I’m fully expecting to come away with a fourth win.”