After suffering a loss to Alex Morono at LFC 49 in December of 2015, welterweight Derrick Krantz has gone on a three-fight winning streak, including capturing an LFA title in his most recent victory this past May at LFA 12 versus Ben Neumann.
Krantz credits his recent success to his maturation as a fighter.
“I kind of feel like I’ve come into my own,” Krantz told MMAWeekly.com. “I feel comfortable in my preparations for my fights now. I’m confident. I’ve got it dialed in what I need to do to get ready for fights.
“I’ve had some pretty good showings. I always find things to work on, but for the most part I’m looking solid all the way around.”
Krantz additionally feels the diversity he’s gotten in his training – spending time at multiple gyms – has been a big boon to his winning streak.
“I’m getting pushed, and that’s the most important part for me. I can’t progress if I’m not pushing myself as much as I can.”
Krantz (20-9) will look to defend his recently won 170-pound title in the main event of LFA 23 against top prospect James Nakashima (7-0) on Friday in Bossier City, La.
“I’ve watched film on James and he’s a solid competitor,” Krantz said. “He’s got solid wrestling, good stand-up, strong punches and strong kicks – he’s solid all the way around.
“In none of his fights have I seen him break spirit or anything like that. I know he’s going to bring it. What I need to do to put James away is be patient, fight my fight and just believe in my abilities.”
Though a successful LFA title defense could be his key to the UFC, Krantz isn’t concerned so much with that as much as he is about putting his attention into the bout itself.
“I try not to think about it being a title defense,” said Krantz. “I, myself, think of it as another fight. In reality it’s a fight with a title on it. I focus more on the fight itself and then what comes afterwards.
“I’m 10 years strong in this sport. I’ve had my ups and downs. I’ve never turned down a tough fight. I feel I’m one of the best in the world and I’m going to go in there and prove it.”