Warwick, RI: CES MMA 61 will be taking place at “The Tent” at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Warwick, RI, on Wednesday, October 14 at 7 pm ET.
There will be no fans in attendance but will stream live on FIGHT PASS, the industry’s preeminent streaming service for combat sports. Visit FIGHT PASS for more information on subscription packages and how to access the service live on fight night. CEO of FightBook MMA Roberto Villa had the opportunity to talk to one of the fighters on the card. He spoke to Josh Marer after he weighed for his fight against Connor Matthews.
Josh thank you for taking the time to talk to me. I know you weighed in today so again thank you. Josh, I like asking this question because everyone has a different story to tell. Why did you start training MMA? That’s a multi-faceted question and not all of it I can fully explain or feel comfortable fully explaining. But I love fighting. I’ve always loved fighting. It is the only place where everything in my head slows down and I can think clearly. It is the only thing I have ever done that I feel like I am meant to do. Fighting has saved me from so much of my past and saves me from myself every day. I had a rough life growing up and been down a bad path in life that martial arts taught me how to start becoming a better version of myself. I’ve seen and done a lot of bad things in life. And this brings me peace and heals me. Makes me better than I was yesterday. It brings out the best qualities within me and teaches me new life lessons every day. Everyone in martial arts finds their way to the gym one way or another and it’s mostly because everyone is trying to become better versions of themselves. It is the only place I feel truly at home and where I can relate to other people. Everyone in the gym in the martial arts community is so tight nit and like family to me bc we all understand each other no matter what walk of life, race, religion, etc. We are all in the same place with similar goals and understand we are all working to achieve peace within ourselves and to be constantly better than we were yesterday. When you fight you fight alone, but you cannot do it without teammates, coaches, and fans to push you to your goals and they need you just as much to better themselves. I want to be the best I can possibly be and go as far as I can go to achieve as much out of my life as possible and this is the only way I feel I can do it. You don’t really know what you’re made of until you do it and push yourself to be the best you can be and that applies to life too.
How excited are you to be fighting again? I’m always excited to fight especially to see how much I have grown and improved in between fights. I love showcasing my skills and I love seeing what skills I put to the test and see where I need to improve. It’s human chess at it’s finest.
What adjustments did you have to do during your training and weight cut for this fight during this pandemic? Not much. Georgia has pretty much stayed open and I have been training consistently. I have the weight cut down to a science. And the key is rehydration protocol. I found out about this fight 3 weeks out so I ramped up my cardio training fast but other than that everything has been consistent.
You’re taking on Connor Matthews tomorrow night, how do you see this fight ending? I know Connor is a tough opponent. I don’t take easy fights. I know he will give me a run for my money. He is used to jumping out of planes into warzones and going to war with men behind enemy lines. He is a gamer for sure and not one behind a screen but a legit soldier. I don’t feel like he has been truly tested in the cage though. I know his striking is sharp and he is out of a great camp. But all his wins are easy wins. His total time in the cage as a pro is about a minute. He hasn’t had someone that can take his best hits and keep pushing in his face. The pressure will be real. The blood will be real. The fight will be a grind and he hasn’t seen that before. I’m curious to see how he holds up going into the later rounds. I’m excited to trade with him too. Finally, an opponent where we can give a great striking match. Same height same weight. Both very strong competitors. He thinks I am just a grappler. He is in for a surprise. Either somebody is going to get a finish in the second or third or we will go to decision bloody and beat up. Either way, CES will wish they made this the main event fight. I always go for exciting fights that are a fight of the night worthy. That’s the only way people will remember my name. I wish there were fans in the stands but I know everyone watching at home will be talking about this for a while and hopefully, I get a call to the top!
What ranks, titles or metals have you held or hold? I have an Ammy kickboxing title, 2x Georgia fight of the year winner.
How would your closest friends describe you? I’m real and straight forward. Depends on the quality of the person that has the opinion of me. If they are good people and real, they probably have a better opinion of me. But I tend to be everyone’s friend. I’m not going through life causing drama. I just want real relationships with real good-hearted people. Everyone else probably won’t know me enough to have an opinion of me.
Any hidden talents? If I told you they wouldn’t be hidden. I can’t put all my cards on the table. (laughs)
Where would you like to be one year from today? UFC, Bellator, or ONE Championship.
What’s your favorite grappling technique and favorite striking technique. Whatever makes you bleed and feel the most pain. I want to make you give up and look for a way out. There are so many things I can do that I’m itching to showcase.
Josh, thank you so much for the opportunity to be able to talk to you today. Any sponsors or anyone you want to shout out? I would like to give a shout out to my wife and kids for supporting my dream and believing in me. They are my rock. Huge thank you to my coaches at American Top Team- Team Lima. Dhiego Lima, Douglas Lima, Brantley Furr, Norman Simoes, Sidney Champagne, Adam Reese, and all my teammates that push me and help me grow and be the best version of myself every day! My sponsors for seeing my potential and supporting my dream and helping take worries away so I can perform my best!
Let everyone know where they can find you on social media.
@liberty.brand.hemp @octagon_sports_massage @dreamworksrestoration
If everyone can like and share my pages
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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