Though he was only able to fight twice in 2017, the year ended up pretty good for middleweight Andrew Kapel, by picking up first round finishes in both. But more importantly was a move that Kapel felt he needed to forward his career.
“The last year was a lot of big changes for me and my family,” Kapel told MMAWeekly.com. “We moved out to Denver to train at Elevation Fight Team. Just getting settled, getting used to the routine, and that was the biggest news of the year. It was a big change.”
Kapel feels the move to Colorado was necessary as things in his native Minnesota had started to regress a little.
“I need a more ripe MMA scene like what we have out here in Denver,” said Kapel. “Our gym in Minnesota, The (Minnesota Martial Arts) Academy, a lot of the talent has moved on to other things, and the coaches changed a little bit.
“There are a lot of good training people out here. I connected with the Elevation Fight Team real well. I wanted to be at a place with people in my weight class that a little bit more talented, a little more established.”
Kapel (12-6) will look to pick up his third win in a row when he faces Kevin Nowaczyk (19-3) in the 185-pound main event of Victory FC 60 in Hammond, Ind., on Saturday.
“He’s a well-rounded MMA fighter that isn’t dominant in one discipline, which seems the case,” Kapel said of Nowaczyk. “He kind of wants to win at all costs. Some people tend to wait and hold positions to try to win a round instead of going for a finish. He comes non-stop and has good cardio, so that’s his real strength.
“He has a real good record and hasn’t lost since 2013, so he has that going for him. I’m excited to showcasing my skills against him. I’m looking forward to it.”
Having split his time in the past between MMA and other combat sports, Kapel is keeping his eyes set to MMA and making moves in this sport going forward in 2018.
“I’m 100-percent focused on MMA from now on,” said Kapel. “Unless there’s a big opportunity that seems like it fits. I’m really not looking at kickboxing anymore. I was mostly doing it for experience and because I enjoyed doing it, but MMA is what I’m focused on. That’s where my goals reside.”