“When I had his record, my mental ability wasn’t 10 percent of what it is now,” Carl told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). “If his mental (ability) is more built up, hey, more power to him. But I know when I was in his situation, I wasn’t ready to fight somebody like me.”
The World Series of Fighting welterweights meet in the co-main event of WSOF 3, which takes place tonight at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The event’s main card airs live on NBC Sports Network (11 p.m. ET) following prelims on MMAjunkie.com (8:30 p.m. ET).
Carl, who’s won his past five bouts, has double the number of pro fights as Steele. Over eight years in the sport, he said he’s learned some valuable lessons about what it takes to compete. He also knows how to spot guys who don’t have it.
“If a guy comes off trying to act tough or not genuine, or if he’s trying to intimidate you in any way, I know, they, this guy is terrified,” he said. “Because why do you have to come off as a pr–k like that? You can just be a nice guy to everybody.”
So far, he hasn’t gotten that vibe from Steele, who’s won his past four and has only one setback in his pro career. But like him, Steele doesn’t come from a well-known MMA camp, and earlier in his career, he felt overwhelmed fighting on big promotional platforms.
A submission loss to Dan Hornbuckle under the Bellator banner sticks out to Carl, who said he spent the night prior to the event reading predictions that he was going to get dominated.
“I went in there already losing the fight before I got in the cage,” he said. “I was overwhelmed by all the media, and I just went in there thinking, ‘I can’t win this. I’m just a small-town guy from Iowa.’ During the fight, I was reading. I wasn’t reacting like I should.”
Through that experience, Carl said he discovered he was short-changing himself before he ever stepped in the cage.
“I went around to a lot of bigger camps, and that was part of my realization was training with those guys and knowing that I can compete with them,” he said. “I’m not saying I’m going to dominate everybody, but I’m not going to get dominated.”
Now, Carl uses positive pressure to keep himself from the fear that he might suffer a career slide.
“Like I know I want to keep doing this, and I don’t want to take a step back,” he said.
Carl, of course, can’t know whether Steele has learned these lessons in a shorter timeframe. It could be that he trains with champions, doesn’t let the moment overwhelm him, and uses that sole loss to remind him that he never wants to move backward in his career. That’s what he’ll find out on tonight.
That means the small-town guy from Iowa could be thrust into the spotlight pretty soon. But this time, he said he’s ready for it.
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.view original article >>
LAS VEGAS – WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje is heading to the UFC, according to his now-former employers.Filed under: News, WSOF read news >>
Check out this epic battle between WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje and challenger Luiz Firmino. read news >>
Image via WSOF When it was announced last week that the World Series of Fighting would be changing its name to the Professional Fighters League and introducing a 10-month league format to mixed marti read news >>
Marlon Moraes is headed to the UFC, but faced former WEC world champion Miguel Torres at the inaugural WSOF1 on November 3, 2012, in Las Vegas. read news >>
If beating welterweight contender Demian Maia at May 13’s UFC 212 doesn’t make him the challenger, Jorge Masvidal says this means “the sport has taken a dramatic turn for the worse.”Filed under: MMAj read news >>
Now former WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje late Wednesday night said his next move is a done deal.Filed under: News, UFC, WSOF read news >>
With the WSOF morphing into the Professional Fighters League, the UFC snatched up another of the promotion's champions, inking a deal with Justin Gaethje. read news >>
Former WSOF lightweight champ Justin Gaethje made it clear from the moment he announced his UFC deal that he wanted only top competition. Now he’s calling them out by name.Filed under: Featured, News read news >>
Jose Estrada (3-0) heads into Friday’s Combate Americas 14 looking to keep his quick finish streak going against Emilio Chavez (12-9). read news >>
LaRue Burley is the type who prefers to look forward into the future of his fighting career, not dwell on the past.Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News read news >>