Looking Back: Lonestar Beatdown – House of Blues – Nov.15

Second guessing is part of our sport. Many times we will watch a fight as fans and second guess the decisions a fighter made. We don’t truly understand what’s going through their minds during the fight. “Looking Back” is a way of letting the fighters explain to the fans why they did what they did or what they might have done differently.

For a round by round recap and results of the fights being discussed in this article, check our results page here.



Photo courtesy of SSanceMan.SmugMug.com

Andrew Craig

andrewcraig_lb_125x150 TCD.net: How hard was it to fight your friend, and did that affect your strategy?

Andrew: It really wasn’t that hard.  When the fight started it was just like a really hard core sparring session, so it wasn’t hard to fight him.  As far as strategy, I knew what he was going to bring to the table, which is why I pretty much tried to keep it on the ground, because he’s got good hands.

TCD.net: You had John in multiple submission attempts before you finally cinched in the D’Arce. How discouraging was it to have him continually escape?

Andrew: It was, but not in the sense that I’m going to lose the fight.  It was more discourage in the sense of , “man I’ve got to work on my jits more, I thought I was better than this”.

TCD.net: In the second round John had a guillotine on you that looked pretty tight. It did not seem to be below your chin but still seemed tight. What were you thinking at that moment?

Andrew: I looked at the video, and it does look tight.  My girlfriend, parents, all my buddies, they all thought it was tight too.  To be honest, it wasn’t around my neck, it was  just around my jaw line.  I was looking at Travis and Jace and told them I’m OK; I also looked at the ref and said “I’m cool, don’t think I’m passing out or anything”.  So then I just sat there for a while, rather than try and escape, because I know how taxing that can be on somebody’s arm.  If you think you have a choke or an arm bar or a triangle locked up and you really squeeze at it for a while, that’s going to kill those muscles.  So I wanted him to burn some energy in his arm before I tried to escape.

TCD.net: Do you plan to make any title defenses or are you going Pro?

Andrew: I have no idea. I haven’t thought about it.  It’s a good question, but one to be left to me and my coaches.  We need to evaluate what my next move is.

John Malbrough

johnmalbrough_lb_125x150TCD.net: What did it feel like standing across from your friend knowing you were getting ready to try and hurt him?

John: It was weird.  I didn’t know if I should have touched his hand to just get the aggression out.   It was weird be we are such good friends, but we did what we had to do.  After that first punch, everything kind went a lot smoother.  After the fight, it was cool that we were all buddy buddy.  It’s cool that we can go in there and beat each others as and then turn around and say “ good job man”.  There where no hard feeling or anything, we still talk.  I talked to him the day after, the week after and still talk to him.  If I had to do it again, I think I could, it wasn’t too bad.

WTCD.net: e you able to stick to your game plan or did Andrew make you change it during the fight?

John: He made me change quit a bit.  I wanted to keep it standing up, but he’s got such good take downs that it was hard for me to keep it standing.  Plus he knew that’s what I wanted.  It was just hard for me to stay on my feet.

TCD.net: What would you change about your approach to this fight if you could do it over again?

John: I definitely need to work on my grappling and my wrestling more.  That’s something I should have done more.  When I had the opportunity, I should have taken him down and put him on the ground instead of the other way.  I would def work on that more before I got back in there with him.

TCD.net: So do you want a rematch?

John: Definitely, but not anytime soon.  I’ll let him hold on to it for a little while. [laughs] But seriously, yes, I would do it again.

TCD.net: Anything you’d like to add?

John: I just want to say congratulation to him on his victory; it was a good hard fight.  Good job.

Jordan Rivas

jordanrivas_lb_125x150TCD.net: You came in and clinched right away. Was your gameplan not to stand but to take it to the ground right away?

Jordan: I didn’t get to see tape on him and I thought his plan was to stay out of the clinch with me. I thought he was just going to try to knock my head off.  I have been working my boxing every day for the last 6 months, and my hands were pretty good for this fight. I came out and he clinched with me and my first thought was “awesome”

TCD.net: Did you think it would be that easy?

Jordan: I always want to be prepared for the worst. I knew he was going to be a tough guy. I was prepared to go 5 rounds. My cardio was awesome so I was very confident in my stamina, but I was glad to get it over with so I could get some partying done. [Laughs]

TCD.net: Now that you are the Lonestar Beatdown 170lb champion will you defend the title or are you going pro?

Jordan: Yeah I promised my wife that the next time I would fight it would be for money. The plan is to go pro in March with Legacy because those guys really take care of us, unless something comes up sooner.

I want to thank all my coaches, all my training partners, and Animal Fightwear

Scott Buzzaird

scottbuzzaird_lb_125x150TCD.net: Your coach texted you to let you know he would not be there in your corner for you hours before your fight. How much did that affect you and how did it affect your gameplan?

Scott: It totally affected me. My gameplan really stayed the same, but I really lost my composure. I tried to keep my cool and put it to the side but regardless it was all me in there. But it did affect me.

TCD.net: You bounced around from gym to gym after the closing of Miletich. Do you think not having a steady camp affected your performance?

Scott: It completely did. Not that I wasn’t getting support, but you need that camp support of having a place to go, a scheduled regiment, a steady flow of teammates and conditioning. You really have to have that.

TCD.net: Looking back, what would you do different?

Scott: First off I would have cross faced more. [laughs] Not sure why I went for a stupid guillotine, and then I didn’t use the cage any. I didn’t break his posture. There are several things I didn’t do right. I was and still am totally disgusted with my performance. . I want to get back in there as soon as possible. I heard there is a January card coming up and I would love to be on that.