| BJPenn.com Radio featured a stellar lineup of MMA talent on this week’s show and co-hosts Pedro Carrasco and George Mathews invited former TUF winner and UFC veteran, Ross Pearson, onto the airwaves to discuss his recent win over Ryan Couture, what’s next for him in his career, and what the rollercoaster ride of the last four years in the UFC have been like for the British scrapper. Pearson is 15-6 in his MMA career and has experienced many ups and downs inside the UFC octagon. He’s currently riding a two fight winning-streak and does not yet have his next matchup scheduled with the UFC. However, Pearson has been calling for a fight in his home country of the UK against Takanori Gomi. The UFC has not yet confirmed a show in the UK although it has been rumored that the company is working on a trip to England in October. Pearson gave the inside scoop to BJPenn.com Radio and here are the highlights from that interview:
“I would love to fight back in England. I think I owe the English fans a fight. It’s been three years since I’ve fought here now,” he explained. “Deep down, that’s where my biggest support came from. That’s where all roads came from. Yeah, I owe them a good fight, man.”
He then explained why he was specifically targeting a fight with Gomi.
Pearson stated, “Anyone outside of the top 10, it would have to be Takanori Gomi.”
“I think he’s a credible opponent, I think he was one of the best in his time, so yeah, why not fight someone like him? If Joe Silva turned around and said TJ Grant, or Gray Maynard or Josh Thomson, of course I’m going to take that fight instead, you know? I want someone that’s going to put me right up there in the mix with the best guys in the world. I would take that fight immediately but outside of the top 10 I think the only person who I would really want to go for is someone with a name like Gomi.”
Ross was also asked what it would mean for the sport and for the UK if a British fighter could clinch a UFC title in the near future. Michael Bisping’s name was brought up along with Dan Hardy’s and his own.
“It’s huge for the sport here. For the English fans, for the media, for everything in itself, you know, the whole fans of UK MMA. Everybody knows that British guys come to fight. Everybody knows if you fight a British guy you’re going to end up in a war,” he replied.“Yeah, Mike [Bisping] is number one but I’m pretty sure that I’m close to number two so if he doesn’t achieve it first I’m running a close second. I know he wants it bad but I sure want it bad too.”
The topic of trash talk was brought up with Bisping’s name and Ross was asked what makes him so different from the mouthy bad-boy, Michael Bisping. Pearson attributed it to simple personality differences. He explained, “I’m a little bit more laid back, a little bit more forgiving.”
Pearson explained that rather than worrying about promoting and talking his fights up he’s spent his time training in the gym for the actual fight.
“Should I concentrate more on trying to sell a fight with my mouth or should I concentrate more on trying to sell a fight with my fists? I took the option of trying to sell fights with my fists, you know? If I can keep knocking people out, I’ll let my fists do the talking. I’d rather do that. I’m not good with conversations. I’m not good at arguments. I’m not good at acting. What you see is what you get with me,” Pearson stated.
Ross Pearson has found his new training home at Alliance MMA in San Diego, California. Because Pearson is British and has family back in the UK he was asked how his training situation worked and how he split time between coming to California to train and spending time back home with friends and family. Pearson confirmed the fact that he does still live in England and only spends a limited time prior to fights down at Alliance MMA.
“Yeah, I don’t have a visa” he explained. “I’m not a resident of America. I can only stay there for like 90 days at one time so I do my pre-camps and some of my camps at home in England with my guys back here. I have a great team back here in England,” he explained. “My main part of my training camp is in San Diego at Alliance with Coach Eric Del Fierro and Adrian Melendez is my boxing coach, Jimmy Jah, Jimmy Haribson is my jiu-jitsu coach, and I also work with mike Chandler and Phil Davis on my wrestling. That were the last 8 to 10 weeks of hard training go down, you know? I call it going to jail when I go to camp.”
He was then asked if he every contemplated making the permanent move to the US:
“I’m English deep down. I’m kind of stuck in the middle of traveling around right now, and my girlfriend live in England right now. We spend a bit of time here at home,” he replied.“But the last few weeks is hard training down in San Diego.”
Ross Pearson won The Ultimate Fighter reality show back in 2009 and has since had a nice career inside the UFC. He’s had big wins and heart-breaking losses but the growth has been steady and visible in the Brit. He was asked to comment on the long journey and rollercoaster of a ride he’s had thus far in the UFC:
“The rollercoaster has been crazy. There’s been some good ups and there’s been some good downs but it’s been unbelievable. I just remember being so green as grass,” he explained. He said that over time he’s learned how to understand the business aspects of MMA and he’s also learned how to peak on fight night rather than in the gym three weeks prior to a fight. He stated,“I’m getting to be the best fighter on the night.”
“It’s just been a constant learning curve. I feel like I’ve put in all the work and I just went through a University and I’m just getting my degree, that’s what I feel like. And now I’m off on my own, doing work on my own trade,” he continued. “Now it’s just about being the best guy that I can be when I need to be.”
Pearson talked about how he’s learned to tone back his tempo in the gym because he feels that much of his ‘early-peaking’ or even injuries happen from over-training for every fight. He feels he’s learned a ton, but according to him, he’s still far from done.
“I have to realize now that less is more. I feel like I’ve done my apprenticeship, I feel like I’ve been to college, I’ve been to the university, I’ve learned all the skills, I’ve learned all the tricks of the trade and now I’m going on my own into the big bad world and fighting in my own fights. I still think I have a lot to learn and I’ll never stop learning. I’m not saying that I’m the best fighter I’ll ever be, that’s definitely not what I’m saying, but I feel like the hard work is done, everything is coming natural to us now.”
To conclude the interview Ross was asked to comment on what he wanted out of the sport the most and he explained that he loves doing what he does and he just wants to get better each day. He did, however, state that there was one goal that everyone should know by now. He concluded, “The only thing left in the future and what I want to do, which everyone knows, is to get to that gold, you know? All of that hard work has to be for something.”
From all of us here at BJPenn.com I would like to thank Ross Pearson for joining our radio show to talk MMA and share the inside scoop with all of the fans. We look forward t hearing about what’s next for Pearson in the enar future and wish him all the best in his hunt for his next bout.