Ian Heinisch has violent intentions for Omari Akhmedov.
Heinisch is taking on the Dagestani fighter at UFC 245 this weekend. The American is looking to return to the win column after a disappointing performance against Derek Brunson at UFC 241.
Heinisch says a virus limited his cardio and his performance on that night.
“I had a virus going into that fight. I tried to knock him out, but there could have been a lot of reasons. It is the most tired I have ever been and tried to push through it,” Heinisch said to BJPENN.com. “The fight was pretty close. If I could have kept the pace I had in the first round it would have been a dominating performance, probably a knockout. But, you learn from that stuff.”
Although he lost the fight, Ian Heinisch was expected to make a quick turnaround at UFC Singapore against Brad Tavares. Unfortunately, he suffered a concussion in camp and had to pull out and was quickly rescheduled to take on Akhmedov.
“I jumped into training camp quickly. But, I took a hard head butt and tried to push through it and spar. I had pretty bad concussion symptoms and let my body fully recover,” he explained. “I told Mick what happened and he was super cool. Then within a few hours, he said you can be on this card against this guy and I said yeah let’s do it. I appreciate the UFC doing it, it’s always good to fight right before the holidays.”
Heinisch knows he must win this fight against Akhmedov. He knows he can’t drop two in a row —especially in the UFC — so all he cares about is getting his hand raised on Saturday.
“Two losses in the UFC is always dangerous. You are in jeopardy of losing your job even if being a ranked opponent,” Heinisch said. “I still have a lot to prove. I want to prove I belong in the top-10 and I want to climb the ladder like I was.
“I’m not looking too deep into it because then you start playing mind tricks on yourself. Just trying to force things,” he continued. “I’m going in there with all instincts and I’m going to make it violent and that is guaranteed. Just get back into the win column.”
Heinisch doesn’t know a ton about Omari Akhmedov but his teammate Zak Cummings just fought him so he has been picking his brain. He expects the Russian to try and wrestle him, which he is prepared for. All Heinisch knows is that it is going to be a violent fight.
“I know my teammate Zak Cummings fought him, and he said it is a good fight for me. He will probably try to wrestle me like most of my opponents. You know, we are prepared, we are ready. I plan on making it a violent fight and throw some overhands and it is going to be a good time.”
Ian Heinisch is confident he will get his hand raised and end 2019 back in the win column. He expects to put on a show at UFC 245 and wants to battle Jack Hermansson next.
“A win Dec. 14 gets me a pocket full of cash to enjoy the holidays and solidify my ranking and get the opportunity to fight above me. I want guys like Jack Hermansson, someone closer to the top-five,” he concluded. But, I’m focused on this fight. Just put on a show for the fans and get back into the win column and we will evaluate who is next.”
Who do you think will win the fight between Ian Heinisch and Omari Akhmedov at UFC 245?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 12/12/2019.