Following his difficult loss to Sam Stout at UFC 108 last January, Joe Lauzon was faced with an even more difficult decision: jump back into the ring, or take some time off to further hone his skills. Fortunately for his fans, he chose the latter.
Lauzon, a lightweight submission fighter, originally got his feet wet in martial arts during his junior year of high-school in East Bridgewater, Massachusetts. Lauzon is relatively young compared to other UFC fighters (the average age in the UFC is 29.5 years). He actually spent some time as a systems administrator after graduating with a computer networking degree; arguably making him the toughest computer nerd you know.
At first, Lauzon was hesitant about fighting full time, but after winning three consecutive fights at an 8-man WFL tournament in 2006, he was presented with a contract to fight in the UFC—and who could pass that up?
Lauzon is not one to make excuses, but it’s not hard to draw conclusions about what led to his loss to Stout at UFC 108. Just 10 months preceding the fight, Lauzon underwent surgery on his ACL. Although the knee was healed in time for the match, Lauzon wasn’t able to train at 100% in the most important months leading up to the fight.
When a fighter is faced with a unanimous loss decision, it stings, as you can imagine. Almost every fighter out there chomps at the bit to get a chance at redemption. Smart fighters reject that impulse though, and fight only when they feel ready. Luckily for Joe Lauzon, he didn’t fall prey to that urge and spent his time off in a series of training camps.
“When I had my layoff before, I was coming off of a win. I don’t want to say I was taking it easy, but I didn’t really have a reason to push as hard,” Lauzon said. “I was kind of using my knee as a crutch. I could say, ‘Oh, I have to take it easy because of my knee.’ But now, I’m coming off of a loss. All I’ve been doing is thinking about it every single day.”
Confidence plays such a huge role in MMA. You wouldn’t expect a fighter to perform at his/her best if they were constantly questioning their abilities. Not only is Lauzon all healed-up and ready for this fight, he’s hungry for another chance at a win as well. Like Lauzon said, “You’re only as good as your last fight.” Following Saturday night, let’s hope he can look back upon those words with a smile this time.
Alexia is a lifelong fan of sports and fitness. She works with MMA Industries, proud suppliers of MMA clothing to athletes around the world. Alexia continues to bring you the latest news in the mixed martial arts world on everything from the most advanced MMA equipment, to the newest MMA shirts.