Even though he’s only had two fights so far in 2013, it could be said that featherweight “Insane” Georgi Karakhanyan is having the best year of his career so far.
Wins over UFC veterans Din Thomas and Waylon Lowe and signing with the World Series of Fighting have helped to reestablish Karakhanyan as a top fighter following a disappointing run in Bellator a couple of years ago.
“(The year) started good with the Din Thomas fight, (even though) I didn’t like the way I performed, but it was a good fight and I came out with a victory,” said Karakhanyan. “Then I signed with WSOF and made my debut against a tough fighter (in Lowe). I said what I was going to do and I did it – I finished him in the first round.
“I would have liked to keep things standing (against Lowe) to showcase more of my striking. I knew he was going to shoot because he was not going to be comfortable standing with me, so I’m glad I finished him.”
With his win over Lowe ratcheting his winning streak to eight consecutive fights, Karakhanyan (22-3-1) has earned a featherweight title bout against top prospect Lance “Party” Palmer (7-0) on Saturday, Dec. 7, in Vancouver.
“There’s no pressure at all,” said Karakhanyan. “I’ve fought on a big stage and I’ve fought for a title before, so for me there is no pressure because I’ve been there before.”
When it comes to matching up with Palmer, Karakhanyan feels the diversity of his game will be enough to overcome his opponent’s strong wrestling base.
“I know people might underestimate me and take (Palmer’s) side because of his wrestling background and because I lost to Joe Warren, but I feel really confident that I can finish him wherever the fight goes,” said Karakhanyan.
“If we keep standing, perfect, I’ll try to knock his head off. If we go to the ground, I’ll look for all kinds of submissions. If neither of those come, I’ll grind out a five-round decision.”
While winning a title is a big thing for Karakhanyan, he told MMAWeekly.com that continuing his winning streak is even more important because it establishes him on many levels.
“For me, I look at the win more because the more I win the more respect I’ll gain from the fighters, the media, and the organizations,” he said.
“I can sit here and open my mouth like Conor McGregor and talk (expletive) about every single fighter, but when you fight and have a good performance and finish your opponent, it speaks for everything.”