Since joining the World Series of Fighting a little over a year ago, heavyweight Derrick Mehmen has become one of the promotion’s top fighters.
An impressive knockout win over Rolles Gracie in his first bout, followed by two unanimous decision victories over Scott Barrett and Dave Huckaba have put Mehmen in the position to challenge for the promotion’s first ever heavyweight championship.
Looking back on his fights so for the WSOF, Mehmen told MMAWeekly.com that he’s done well, but he can always do better.
“I’m really happy with my performances so far, but I feel I have more to show,” said Mehmen. “I haven’t shown everything that I’m capable of, but I keep feeling better and better every time I go out there.”
Since suffering back-to-back losses for the only time in his career in 2012, Mehmen has been on six-fight winning streak, to which he attributes an unexpected, but ultimately good, return to his home state.
“I left ATT a couple years ago under some circumstances that forced me to move back to Iowa, so it kind of changed my strategy and made me go back to my roots a little bit there,” he said.
“I have really been sticking to the philosophy that it’s just a fight and we’re going in there to beat somebody up and we’re not in there to overthink everything and be super-technical. Obviously, all that stuff comes with training and learning, but when it comes to fight time, it’s time to go, and it’s been working out for me.”
On Saturday in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Mehmen (18-5) will take on to prospect Smealinho Rama (8-1) for the vacant WSOF heavyweight championship.
“Rama is a totally different challenge; totally different from anybody I’ve fought so far,” said Mehmen. “I’ve just got to be in his face and bully him around.
“I know what I was like when I was 8-1 in my career and in the same exact shoes as him, and I wasn’t ready for this fight. I’m just going to be in his face, bully him around, do what I do and put him away.”
While winning a major championship will be a big accomplishment for Mehmen, having a title will give him the kind of stability he can build his career off of going forward.
“It’s just an extra thing that comes with the fight,” said Mehmen. “I want to just keep winning, moving up the ranks, and as long as I keep winning, good things will happen.
“I win this fight, this really cements my top level status and helps me get good fights from here on out. It gets me good paydays, good sponsorships and gives me a good chance to punch my own ticket.”