It was a banner year for bantamweight up-and-comer Pedro “Young Punisher” Munhoz in 2013.
Wins in both his fights not only kept his record unblemished at 9-0, but he also captured the RFA 135-pound championship in the process.
“It was really happy and it was a really good year for me,” said Munhoz looking back on last year. “I had a couple of fights for the RFA and beat some pretty tough opponents.
“I fought Mitch Jackson, who was 20-3, and beat him with a guillotine choke, and then a few weeks after that I beat UFC veteran Jeff Curran for the RFA title and had a very exciting fight.”
Having proven he can step up against top competition, Munhoz feels like right now he’s at the top of his game.
“It’s given me a lot of confidence,” he said. “To beat fighters like them makes me feel like I’m ready to fight everybody.
“I don’t want to sound arrogant or something, but I train really hard and I have my goals and my dreams and I feel it’s going to be very hard for anyone to stop me.”
Munhoz’s first test of this year will come on Friday, Jan. 24, when he defends his RFA title against fellow up-and-comer Billy Daniels (7-0) in what could be one of 2014’s first Fight of the Year candidates.
“Every time I go in there I go for the finish because that’s my style,” said Munhoz.
“He’s a tough opponent. He’s young, hungry and is undefeated as well, and he’s going to be ready for sure for this fight. But I’m ready and I’m super-happy with my training camp and am pretty excited for a good fight and get the win.”
Looking forward to the rest of this year, Munhoz told MMAWeekly.com that he has big plans for himself, but he’s not going to sacrifice what’s in front of him thinking too far ahead.
“I have the Plan A, the Plan B, and the Plan C and D, but because I like to stay focused on my fights, I forget about the other stuff,” he said. “Right now, I’m super-focused on my next fight.
“Fighting in the UFC is my dream, but right now I am focused on putting on a good fight, a good show for the fans in the RFA.”