It’s hard to imagine someone being unhappy with a first-round finish in just over 90 seconds, but for World Series of Fighting welterweight Steve Carl, that’s exactly how he feels about his win over Tyson Steele in June at the promotion’s second event.
“I wasn’t really happy with that performance as a whole,” said Carl. “That was kind of disappointing because I wanted to fight a little more. But when fights go that easy, you know you’re doing something right.
“I don’t think (my next opponent) Josh Burkman is going to finish that fast. It’s going to be a real bloodbath, a real mixer.”
Having finished all but three of his 20 wins (with 3 losses), Carl feels he’s become something of a rarity.
“I’m watching these fights and I feel like it’s a last of a dying breed type thing,” he said. “People will go out there and too often it turns into a match. They’re trying to win the round or do this or that – it’s a fight – and you fight to finish.
“That bell rings and they’re giving you three or five rounds to finish. You need to finish this guy and not let it go to the judges.”
Carl’s two wins in the WSOF earned him the opportunity to face Josh Burkman (26-9) to crown the promotion’s first welterweight champion this Saturday in Coral Gables, Fla., live on the NBC Sports Network.
“I’m not thinking about any position, like the ground or stand-up or anything; I’m just going to go in there and fight (Burkman),” said Carl. “We both bring the same mental attitude, we’re calm. It’s like we just walked in the gym, put on the gloves and are going to turn it up. I think it’s going to be a real chess match.
“I would like to get in more scramble situations and keep the fight high-paced because Josh likes to get a hold of you and control you sometimes.”
Carl told MMAWeekly.com that regardless of whether a fight is for a title or on the undercard, he’s going to approach it just the same.
“I’ve said it several times already. It doesn’t matter if you’re the first fight of the night or the main event, I’m fighting Josh Burkman and the situation doesn’t change,” he said. “I’m fighting the same guy in the same cage, that’s all just external additives to the fight.
“It’s just a reward for beating Josh by being in a main event and winning a world title if I beat him, but I’m just fighting Josh Burkman and that’s the way I’m looking at it in my mind.”
Capping off the year by taking his first major title would be icing on the cake for Carl, who is looking forward to keeping things rolling in 2014.
“It’s nothing but up from here,” he said. “I’d like to fight at least four times a year at least. That’d help further my career. I’m not getting any younger. I’ve been fighting for eight years now and you just get to the point to where you just want to fight.”