Fletcher was the main event at BAMMA 17 in December and picked up the win after Brightmon was retired hurt before the start of the third round. The American was prevented from carrying on by his corner after enduring a dominant second round performance from the Freakshow.
Fletcher admits that his game plan was “a little off” in the first round, as he had to withstand a flurry of stinging shots. Brightmon’s smaller stature and quick hands provided Fletcher with a familiar challenge, but he confesses it was his strategy that threw him.
“We (Fletcher and his team) spoke in the back that being an American guy, he would be looking for the wrestling. So we agreed that I would stay away from kicks and getting caught,” said Fletcher.
“My plan was to box with him, but the big fault with that is I am so used to kicking that my momentum wasn’t right and my footwork – I wasn’t really advancing well.”
Brightmon was able to find his way inside and land some stinging shots a little too easily and was causing a few problems.
A slight change of tactics allowed the Brit to get back to his natural game, which has been honed from fighting guys that are generally shorter than him in the lightweight division.
“I always find that problem with the guys at the gym and at lightweight. Everybody is going to be shorter than me; they are the kind of guys I train with,” he said.
“It has toughened me up and anyone that wants to have a decent bout with me has to push the pace. I have been trained to get used to that style of person. It is something I have worked on in depth, but it wasn’t initially what I planned for in the fight. I had something else in my head.
“That is MMA to be honest, sometimes you have to scrap that plan and move onto the next thing. It is all up for the taking.”
After the change, Fletcher looked far more comfortable and was picking off his opponent, while also showing some brilliant elusiveness to stay away from any more damage.
“I said [to my corner], I know what I have got to do, which they were happy with,” Fletcher said. “I started moving forward and brought my more natural fighting style back. I think that worked really well for me. I went from not throwing many kicks in the fight to basically winning the fight with kicks.
“He was tough, really tough. He had something in his head and he went for it big time. I made a mistake and had to bring it back to my terms because he gave me some problems.”
Although currently out of contract with BAMMA, Fletcher is expected to maintain his relationship with the British promotion and still has an eye on lightweight champion Mansour Barnaoui.
“Everybody knows that is the fight I want, but at the same I am not the kind of guy who has one person in my head and says that is all I want,” he said. “If it is put on the table, it is good for me; if it is not then I will understand.
“I am happy to fight whoever they think I will beat me. I want to fight someone where there is a chance I am going to lose this fight. I want them to make me the best I can be.
“Everybody is buzzing [after BAMMA 17], it worked out really well and fingers crossed I continue to be a part of it as they are pushing British MMA forward.”
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