HOUSTON — Tony Ferguson could have a mixture of previous and new in his nook this weekend.
The favored UFC light-weight contender has added legendary boxing coach Freddie Roach as certainly one of his coaches, and Roach will likely be in his nook for his battle in opposition to Beneil Dariush at UFC 262 on Saturday at Toyota Heart, Ferguson informed ESPN on Thursday.
Ferguson let go of all of his cornermen following a loss to Charles Oliveira at UFC 256 final December. Oliveira is now combating for the vacant light-weight title Saturday in opposition to Michael Chandler. With the intention to get again into the title image, Ferguson stated he knew he needed to make some modifications. Ferguson has been coaching at Roach’s Wild Card Health club in Los Angeles for his present camp and likewise had former boxing Olympian Pepe Reilly with him this week.
“Every time I’m going to Wild Card, I at all times have a look at this whiteboard and it says ‘Simply Present Up — It Ain’t Simple,'” Ferguson informed ESPN. “No person goes to have the quantity of braveness, the gumption, the conditioning as the person who’s going on the market and doing it. However there is no excuses. In case you’re going on the market and also you’re doing it, you are going to discover the time, you are going to put your self on the market and you are going to have the humility to have the ability to be coachable. I am very coachable. I’ve at all times made that method.
“This time, it isn’t concerning the punching or simply concerning the kicking or the jiu-jitsu. It is about mixing it up, man. Higher than a blender.”
Along with Roach, Ferguson could have his previous faculty wrestling coach Dave Mills in his nook, in addition to longtime tenth Planet Jiu Jitsu coaching associate and UFC veteran Ben Saunders by his aspect. Ferguson received a Nationwide Collegiate Wrestling Affiliation nationwide title below Mills at Grand Valley State in 2006.
These aren’t the one influences Ferguson has had this camp, both. He has been involved along with his former crew, Staff Dying Clutch, which was as soon as led by former UFC heavyweight champion and WWE legend Brock Lesnar. Ferguson stated he has been in contact with Lesnar and coaches Marty Morgan, Greg Nelson and Erik Paulson all through this camp, in addition to his longtime putting coach Tony Gonzalez.
“They needed to remind me that I am a fighter,” Ferguson stated. “That is blended martial arts. It is not a pissing contest. You are not making an attempt to go on the market and making an attempt to field this dude. You are not making an attempt to impress anyone. You are going on the market for that f—ing victory, and that is precisely what we would have liked to do. And so they helped me encompass that.”
Ferguson received 12 straight fights between 2013 and 2019 however has dropped two straight. He fell to Justin Gaethje in an interim title bout at UFC 249 final Might, after which Oliveira beat him 5 months in the past.
After that bout, Ferguson purged his total camp.
“Once you’re the neatest man within the room, it’s important to principally hearth all people,” Ferguson informed ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. “What principally occurred was no person was testing me. No person was serving to me develop. So I principally needed to do away with all people that was poisonous to me.”
Ferguson (25-5) is without doubt one of the finest light-weight fighters within the historical past of MMA however has by no means fought for an undisputed UFC title. He has had a number of bouts of unhealthy luck, together with dropping his alternative at a title shot when he tore his knee tripping on a wire throughout a media tour.
He’s hoping his revamped teaching workers will result in one other run on the belt at age 37.
“You place within the numbers, you’ve gotten a superb vibe, you retain the crew going,” Ferguson stated. “No errors, man. No negativity. If there’s negativity there, you are eighty-sixing them.”