Abel Cullum: “Even though this is a rematch I’m not the same fighter”

JacksonWink Fight Night 3 will take place Saturday June 2, 2018 at the at the Isleta Resort & Casino. Abel “The Silent Assassin” Cullum (20-6) will take on Joshua Montoya (11-9) but before he steps into the cage on Saturday he sat down with FightBookMMA.

Abel my man thank you for taking the time to talk to me during your busy schedule. I have a few questions I would like to ask you. Let the fans know a little about yourself?

AC: Since the age of 13 I had a vision of where I want my MMA career to be. 18 years later I am still plugging away at making my dream a reality. My pro record is 20-6 and I’ve learned a lot from each and every minute I put into not just each fight but in the gym as well. I was raised in my current home town Tucumcari New Mexico by my father John Cullum. My dad in some people’s eyes (and mine at times) was very strict during my childhood. It was his vision along with my adoration to become a fighter that has helped get me to where I am today.

What first led you into MMA?

AC: As a child my dad would always order boxing; I enjoyed hanging out with the guys but boxing never caught my interest. However, when I was about 10 years old I watched UFC 16 live. UFC was still a bracket tournament then and I remember watching Pat Miletich become a champion. I remember asking my dad if there were more fights like that and we used to binge watch UFC 1-16. From then on I was Hooked.

That’s  awesome. Tell me a little about your gym and where you train?

AC: I started out training at 13 in my back yard with a heavy bag tied to a tree and a dream of being a champion. Once a few months went by and I convinced my father it wasn’t just a fad it advance to the living room and he worked on my kickboxing and Jiu-Jitsu technique. It was hard work but all I wanted to do was train. Often times my 10-year-old brother Jeremiah Cullum was the test subject.

I started reaching out to high school wrestlers and my dad would take me to others gyms to gauge where I was at every now and then. At about 17 years old my dad, brother and I put together a fight team of about 10-15 fighters and Cullum Ground Fighting was born.

I trained and fought out of Cullum Ground Fighting from 2005 until 2012. In 2012 I made some life changes and became a police officer. I had been a 5 time world champion and fought a total of 42 fights in that time period. A couple of years passed by and the UFC introduced a 135 pound division and I again had that same feeling I felt at 13 and I began to train at both Chavez Dojo and Fit NHB in Albuquerque New Mexico.

I returned to the cage and won 2 fights back to back by submission then suffered a little injury that set me back again. I have been fully recovered for a while now and have been training with Master Suan at Force Of One in Clovis New Mexico.

My training has been amazing at FO1 they have a great group of guys and we all push each other and make each other better.

Do you prefer training standup or the ground game?

AC: I love to learn everything I can. My bread and butter is my ground game but I’m always learning. Side note to that my Jiu-Jitsu is all self-taught. One thing a lot of people are shocked to hear is that I have never even put on a Gi in my life.

When you are not training or fighting what are you doing in your spare time?

AC: I’m a corporal for the Tucumcari Police Department and that takes a lot of my time. My dad taught me to do everything like it is the most important thing in the world because it is. I’m also engaged and together my fiancé Ashley and I have a daughter Felicity. We love to take trips, and experience new places. Marvel shows on Netflix also take up a lot of our time.

Let’s talk about your upcoming fight at JacksonWink Fight Night 3. How excited are you to get back in the cage?

AC: I’m so excited to get back into the cage, and I’m thankful JacksonWink put me on the card. Master Suan has kept me busy in preparation for this fight and I’ve loved every second of the grind.

Are you doing anything different that you have done in this camp that you haven’t in previous camps?

AC: The new training camp has allowed me to learn a lot of new things. I’ll be happy to show some of them come June second at the Isleta resort and casino showroom.

I can’t wait since I’ll be cage side. Can you tell us about Joshua and how do your thoughts about fighting him again?

AC: Joshua is a very technical fighter. He is very well-rounded and has no quit in him. This is a rematch 8 years in the making and I know he will be coming back hungry. I won our last fight via submission and I’m sure redemption is on his mind. This however is a fight I have not taken lightly, in every camp my dads words of “everything matters” rings in my ear.

Are you the same fighter since the first time y’all met?

AC: Even though this is a rematch I’m not the same fighter I’m always improving and will not stop until my dreams are my families reality.

What advantages do you think you have over Joshua?

AC: My advantage in every fight is my work ethic, I train like a mad man or so I’ve been told. I love what I do and that love makes every workout so much easier.

How does it feel to main event this card?

AC: In my career a lot of my fights have been title fights and main event fights. To me I’m excited to fight, I could be on the undercard and I would be training like I am fighting for the biggest title in the biggest show.

Nice that’s a mind-set that every fighter should have. What can the fans expect this Saturday?

AC: They can expect to see a man in pursuit of his dream annoying every step of the way.

Any future goals you have made for your MMA career?

AC: I want to continue to give my all in everything I do and go as far as I can where that takes me will be enough.

Abel I’m going to ask you 3 rapid questions I like to do with all my interviews.

1.) Whats your favorite music and who is your favorite band?

AC: I like all music really. Favorite band would have to be Train or Kenny Cheney, every time I hear their songs it takes me back to relaxing on my dads boat at the lake. While working out though I prefer podcasts #thejoeroganexperience.

2.) Who’s your favorite fighter as of today?

AC: Pat Miletich, bas Rutten and Uriah Faber

3.) If you can fight anyone past or present who would it be and why?

AC: I would love to fight everyone that has beat me in the past. I redeemed my self on one loss but have five more I’d like to have another shot at.

Any words you would like to tell your opponent before y’all meet in the cage?

AC: Thank you for taking the fight, and I can’t wait to get in there for round two.

Abel thank you again for sitting with me with your busy schedule, is there anyone you would like to shout out any sponsors the floor is yours.

AC: Thank you for the interview, thanks to my fiancé for being an incredible mother while at the same time handling all my meal prep and supporting me all the way. Thank you Master Suan and everyone at Force Of One. Thank my dad and brother I can’t wait to make you guys proud June second. Drastik Soundz and Graphix for making my shirts. Thank you to everyone that has helped me along the this journey. Thanks to everyone that will be watching and routing for me.

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