UFC Fight Night 31's Lorenz Larkin no longer afraid of jiu-jitsu


lorenz-larkin-8.jpgLorenz Larkin made a classic mistake leading into his UFC debut, and he doesn’t plan on making it again in his second appearance.

Larkin, a may Thai striker by trade, met Francis Carmont at UFC on FOX 7 and found himself too worried about his opponent’s skills to display his own.

“I think I was so concerned with making sure he didn’t take me down, and (I was) kind of underestimating my ground (skills),” Larkin told MMAjunkie.com Radio.

Despite the fact that he still won the fight on the scorecards of most major MMA media outlets, and UFC President Dana White’s observation that Carmont laid an egg, Larkin left San Jose, Calif.’s HP Pavilion with his first loss in the octagon.

“I would probably feel a different way if my first fight in the UFC was a win,” he said. “It’s good and it’s bad. It’s bad because I don’t want to lose. Nobody wants to lose, especially if you think it’s a bad decision.

“But the good thing is I did really good against Carmont. I heard he just kind of shut Constantinos Philippou down and it wasn’t the most exciting fight, so it makes me feel a little better, because I look at all of these guys as high in the rankings. It’s good to see that I did this with somebody, and then they did that to somebody.”

Still, doing good isn’t good enough when it comes to longevity in the UFC. Against Chris Camozzi (19-6 MMA, 6-3 UFC), whom Larkin (13-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) faces on Nov. 6 at UFC Fight Night 31: UFC Fight for the Troops 3, he needs to step up his game. The event takes place at Fort Campbell in Kentucky, and its main card airs live on FOX Sports 1 following prelims on MMAjunkie.com.

Larkin said he’ll walk into the cage this time with a different mindset about his opponent.

“Now, it’s just like I don’t care,” he said. “If somebody takes me down, then I’m going to work from there, and put some trust in my [jiu-jitsu].

“I got to display a little bit of it, but when I get in a position that I don’t want to work from, I just abandon it. Instead of taking Carmont’s back, I just jumped away from him. And just get in guys’ faces.”

The latter has served him well in his career before the UFC. Over half his 15 wins have come by way of TKO or KO.

As of yet, Camozzi has yet to be stopped in the cage, so a knockout could do much to erase the bad taste left in his mouth and put him closer to the type of top-10 opponents he wants to fight.

Although many believe he already should be meeting those challenges, he’s ready to show what he’s capable of this time around, or, as he said of his game plan, “Go out there and do what I do.”

For more on UFC Fight Night 31, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.

MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

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