Following his loss to Nick Newell in the World Series of Fighting late last year, lightweight prospect Keon Caldwell rebounded this past April with a win over Cleon Bardowell in just over two minutes at Fear No Battle 3.
Looking back on the win over Bardowell, Caldwell felt like his 10-month layoff wasn’t a factor and he was able to go out and do exactly what he wanted to in the fight.
“It’s not like I took time off and was just hanging around the house, I was still training,” Caldwell told MMAWeekly.com.
“Cleon was tall and lanky, so I had to work from the inside. I found my home, where I was meant to be at, to build up my arsenal and capitalized on that and just took it to the win. It put us back on track before this upcoming fight.”
The upcoming fight will be Caldwell’s return to WSOF on Saturday in Bethlehem, Penn., to face Ozzy Dugulubgov in a bout that could have happened earlier.
“After I fought Nick at WSOF 4, I got the call about (Dugulubgov) and taking this fight,” said Caldwell. “I feel I probably need an eight or nine week training camp to fight anybody, so I just can’t jump back into it. I could have, but I don’t feel it would have been a good idea.
“I knew this match would present itself again, so that’s why I didn’t take it the first time.”
When Caldwell (10-2) looks at how he matches up with Dugulubgov, he feels his advantage on the feet is going to be a big key to taking the victory.
“I think my movement and my footwork is good and he won’t be able to stand up with me,” said Caldwell of Dugulubgov.
Caldwell feels a win on Sept. 13 could very well be the catalyst towards something bigger in the coming year.
“I think there’s big potential for this opening up all the doors,” said Caldwell.
“Everything can open up off this win, but right now he’s in the way, so he’s the guy I’ve got to go through to open those doors, and I’m going through them.”