Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson explains why a lot of fighters ‘don’t have any chins anymore’

By Russell Ess - February 10, 2016

Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson made a big statement against former UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks at UFC Fight Night 82. It took Thompson less than one round to put the former champion out with a highlight reel combination of strikes that surely had the entire welterweight division on watch.

Stephen Thompson

“Wonderboy” spoke on the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show recently about his game.

“I want to have my head and my mind sharp after my fighting career. To go out there and bang with somebody like that is just too much of a risk. That’s just not my style. That’s not what I like to do. I love the point game and being able to hit you without getting hit back. Just to see you break from that and frustrate you, that’s my game.”

Thompson added that with his fighting style and training, it has preserved his mind and body, which has only made him better.

“I’m gonna do [MMA] as long as my body’s gonna let me. I’ve had a few knee surgeries, but my knees are feeling great and each camp I’m getting better and better. I’m just improving,” he said. “As of right now, it’s feeling great. I don’t feel 33; I feel like I’m 21. I think it’s just a mindset, to be honest with you. I train smart. I’ve got good guys to spar with, guys that are gonna push you but are also not going to try something stupid out there to injure you.”

Regarding how some MMA gyms go day-to-day with heavy sparring, Thompson said that is part of the reason many fighters decline so quickly.

“That’s a lot of these gyms where they go out there and try to beat the crap out of each other. I’ve been to some gyms where they’re wearing the UFC MMA gloves going all out knocking each other out, and that’s just ridiculous,” he said. “It’s why a lot of these guys are young and they don’t have any chins anymore. [Sic} They’re career is gone because they’ve beaten the crap out of each other. You cannot condition the brain.”

What are your thoughts on Thompson’s fighting philosophy? Share your opinion with us in the comments!


Stephen Thompson