Coming off of three straight losses, former UFC and WEC lightweight champion Anthony “Showtime” Pettis is in need a change to get things back on track.
Heading into his next fight, Pettis will be looking to do exactly that.
Speaking to UFC Tonight this week, Pettis talked about the first step in resurrecting his career, “I’m in this to be a champ. I lost to Eddie Alvarez, who’s (the lightweight) champion now. At 145 pounds, I have a whole new division (in front of me).”
While he’s changing weight classes, Pettis doesn’t feel the need to overhaul his preparations too much, although he is employing the services of one of MMA’s premier trainers to help him tweak his strategy to succeed. Pettis is part owner of Roufusport, which is his main stomping ground when it comes to training, but has begun utilizing the expertise of Greg Jackson, as well.
“I still have my daughter at home, but I only go to Jackson’s for a few weeks at a time. I get some different sparring partners and it clears my mind.”
At UFC on Fox 21 in Vancouver on Saturday, Pettis (18-5) will face his first opponent at featherweight when he takes on Charles Oliveira (21-5) in the evening’s co-main event.
“I haven’t even watched tape on this guy,” Pettis said of Oliveira. “I didn’t want to concern myself with him.
“I did that for my last few fights and it made me second-guess myself. Now, I just concentrate on what I have to do. I actually watched my own fights to get ready.”
While he’s not trying to add any pressure to himself heading into the Oliveira fight, Pettis doesn’t deny that he does feel some weight on his shoulders going in.
“Most definitely,” said Pettis. “Every fight is the most important fight of your career, but this is one of those fights that can make it or break it.”
While the focus is as always to get his own career on the right path, Pettis has been able to help out a first-time MMA fighter for his upcoming debut in former WWE superstar CM Punk.
“He made a huge jump from where he was to now,” Pettis said of Punk. “He has a skill set. Two years isn’t a lot of time to develop in this sport. He put the time in. He’s holding his own. I’ll be there to watch him (when he makes his debut).”
Though he can shift back to Punk’s fight after Saturday, Pettis is zeroed in on his featherweight debut and Charles Oliveira.