Paul Redmond on Rob Whiteford bout: “One more loss and I’m gone”

redserufcdebut

On the announcement of his bout with Robert Whiteford in Glasgow on July 18, Paul Redmond told SevereMMA.com that he feels one more loss could put an end to his UFC career.

Coming off a loss in his short notice debut against Mirsad Bektic, for which the Team Ryano man was forced to shift nearly 33lbs in two weeks to make the featherweight limit for the first time, ‘Redser’ explained that UFC got in touch with Andy Ryan about a potential bout with the Scot on his home soil.

“UFC got on to Andy Ryan with Robert Whiteford as a possible opponent, Andy told me that was who I was fighting next, I said fair enough,” explained Redmond.

As for what he is expecting from ‘The Flying Judoka’, Redmond cited the various black belts at Team Ryano and his team mate Richie Edgeworth’s meeting with Whiteford as the main reasons why he feels he knows what to expect on July 18.

“It’s good that I have so many great judo black belts and jiu jitsu black belts to train with at Team Ryano. I’ve seen Rob fight in person before, me and Richie Edgeworth fought on a show in Glasgow years ago. I was the co-main event and I fought a really nice guy from Dinky Ninjas called Richie McLarty.

“Rob and Richie fought in the main event. Richie was tiny for 66 kilos and Rob came out, took him down and smashed his head in for the whole fight. I remember Andy had to throw in the towel.

“I know that he’s good and strong. He’s got good judo, he’s got a good base but I just can’t let him clinch me up. As I’ve said we’ve got a lot of judo players in the gym, ‘French’ Chris (Boujard) is a brown belt in judo and if you let him on top of you it’s very hard to move him. I know I can’t be on the bottom in this fight,” claimed Redmond.

Famous for his patented rolling toehold, Redmond would have been happy to see that Whiteford’s last opponent, Daniel Pineda, was able to isolate the Scot’s leg on two occasions to attempt to finish a kneebar. However, ‘Redser’ explained that he has never been a man to study his opponent’s game too much.

He said: “You know what I’m like for watching fights, I don’t put too much of a focus on that. I know that I’m prepared when I’ve got guys like Roger Dardis and Liam O’Toole – high level brown and black belts – to roll with everyday. Guys like John Donnelly have been around for years too, so I am getting that high level training in.

“I don’t feel the need to look at too much tape because that top level training is in place. You know if people leave anything out there for me I’m going to dive all over it. I’d rather go out and try to force situations than go out and scrap a win.

“I fuckin’ hate that. I’d hate to go out and put on a boring fight just to get a win. Nobody remembers that kind of shit. I’d rather be in a complete war with loads of action and come away with a loss. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to Glasgow to lose, I’d just much rather put on an exciting fight for the fans.”

As for being the opposition to a hometown favourite, Redmond’s previous experiences should stand to him at the SSE Hydro Arena. An event in Wales where he fought in the main attraction particularly stands out for the featherweight when he thinks about hostile crowds.

“I don’t really care about the crowd. I know what kind of reception he’ll get based on what Neil (Seery) got when he was walking out in Dublin. I know the Scottish crowd, just like the Irish, they’ll be behind their man 100 percent.

“It’s not like I have no experience of playing the bad guy either. I was in some mad spot a few years ago, it was the weirdest scenario, me and Neil went over to Wales for fight that I had,” he remembered.

“I was the main event and I think I was fighting in front of about 150 people. I know there’s a big difference between that and 15,000 people but this was a very hostile environment I was in.

“We were in the back and there was a guy that came back in after fighting and he was burst open. We were all in the away corner – the Welsh guys had one dressing room and everybody else shared one – so I asked the guy was he alright, and what had happened to him.

“He told me that he had won the fight against one of the local lads and one of the spectators scaled the fence and cracked him two digs and opened him up. I got lashed out of it with boos as well and then I went and smashed the head off your man. We didn’t hang around though, as soon as it was over we got the fuck out of there.

“I fought Lewis Long in his hometown, I’ve fought Alexei Roberts in his hometown. I know it isn’t on that same scale with 15,000 people, but it is something that you do have to prepare yourself for going into a fight.”

Redmond also expressed that the feelings that came along with the loss in his UFC debut are something that he doesn’t want to have to deal with again.

“Right the way through my career I’ve always had that motivation, the UFC debut didn’t change anything. It never left me. I don’t want to have that feeling of a loss again. I’ve had that now, and I just hate that feeling, it’s not something you want to go through.

“When UFC came over here with the World Tour I got that feeling of being on stage, people knowing your name and that, but I know with one more loss I’m gone. That’s the way you have to look at it. This is a make or break fight for me.”

Finally, Redmond outlined why he feels he won’t have the same trouble he had in Stockholm making the featherweight limit when he weighs in for the Glasgow event on July 17.

“It’s mad I used to always struggle to get to 155 but I got down to that on the Thursday night before the weigh in,” he stated. “I didn’t use any baths or anything like that so that was something that I had never done. I found that weird and had the fight been at 155 I would’ve been at 100 percent.

“I had never made 145 before and when I arrived in Scotland I weighed 170, so I had to lose 25 pounds in about three days. You saw what I was like on the scales, I was fucked, so when I got back home I started eating regularly again right away.

“I was only taking in 500 calories a day when I was trying to make that weight for my debut. I was burning of 600 or 700 calories in my first run of the day. Then I’d be burning that off again with a boxing session or moving around with Neil.

“I was burning off nearly double what I was putting in so that starts to affect muscle, tissue, fat – everything comes off you – that’s why I didn’t look healthy on the scales.

“I came back home after that fight and I start putting the proper amount of calories in my body. Even though I was eating clean I was back up to 84 kilos. I’m lighter now than I used to be walking around for lightweight. So I’ve got about 9 weeks now so it should be fine. I expect there to be no trouble this time around.”

@PetesyCarroll

Peter Carroll is Severe MMA's lead feature writer. He has been featured in many top publications and some rubbish ones too. He also writes for the Irish Daily Mirror and Vice's Fightland.