Bryan Battle will be dropping down to welterweight after winning TUF 29 at middleweight.
Battle won the show with a submission win over Gilbert Urbina, but that was after Tresean Gore had to pull out of the finale. Battle then fought Gore and beat him by decision and in the lead-up to that fight, he realized welterweight is where he belongs.
“I really started thinking about it when I was leading up to the Tresean fight and I was cutting weight,” Battle said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “That was the first time I really didn’t have to cut weight, I didn’t even have to do any sauna work, I just did some grappling in a hot room. I then woke up on wight so it was a strange feeling and even after the Tresean fight I was trying to put on some weight, I got stronger and faster I didn’t get bigger, I kept on getting smaller so three weeks to a month after the Tresean fight I did a test cut and it went well.”
When Battle told his management and the UFC he would be dropping down to welterweight, he wasn’t sure who he would face. He wanted to face a veteran and he got his wish as he will face Takashi Sato at UFC Vegas 59.
“I wasn’t super familiar before we got matched up and since then I’ve watched every piece of tape I can get my hands on,” Battle said. “Takashi is a very interesting fighter, this is going to be a really fun fight, he does things a little bit differently. Obviously, he’s on a little skid, but they are against top guys so that’s nothing to look down on.”
Against Sato, Bryan Battle is confident he will be able to dictate where the fight goes. He believes he is the better striker and grappler, so with that, he expects to get a stoppage win.
“There are some openings standing and on the ground that me and my team feel like we can exploit,” Battle said. “Takashi is a veteran, he knows how to survive and knows how to handle himself in there. Whether it’s on the ground or on the feet I’m just going to look for openings. When an opening shows itself I will look to exploit it… I don’t see this one getting out of the second round personally. There might be some dicey situations, I’m going to be moving forward and I’m looking to force him into mistakes.”
If Battle does finish Sato on Saturday, he says he will have a name in mind to call out to fight later this year.
“Closed mouths don’t get fed so you can definitely anticipate me dropping some names after I fight Takashi,” Battle concluded.
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