Following his departure from The Ultimate Fighter in 2013, lightweight Josh “Gentleman” Hill figured he’d be able to jump right back into the thick of things, but that’s not how it turned out.
It took nearly a half a year before Hill finally got another fight, but luckily for him, he was able to knock Mike Adams out at World Series of Fighting Canada 2, keeping his unblemished record intact in the process.
“I was ready to go in March (of 2014), but then the fight got pushed to June. So the first half of the year I was ready to go, but didn’t fight until June,” Hill told MMAWeekly.com. “The fight went perfectly and how I wanted. I fought a pretty good opponent and got the first round knockout, which is exactly what I wanted.”
Hill admits the time off was trying for him.
“It’s one thing when you’re injured and you need time off, but when you’re healthy and you’re ready to go and there are no fights available or there are other issues, it gets really frustrating,” he said.
“In Ontario, where I’m from, it’s the total opposite of places like California where there are fights all the time. It’s a really dry province. They only had like one or two shows last year total, so it’s pretty brutal for a fighter to come out of there and try to get fights.”
“It’s going to be my toughest test for sure,” said Hill. “Marlon’s a really good, well-rounded guy. He’s the champ for a reason. A lot of people say he’s in the Top 10, so a win over him is huge. This is what I want; I want tough challenges.
“I’m just going to bring the fight to him. I’m not going to stand there and let him dictate the fight and let him batter me whenever he wants to. I’m going to be aggressive and get in his face and make it tough on him from the get-go.”
While winning the title is a big thing for Hill, just being able to compete for it in the first place is something special to him.
“Obviously I want the win, but I’m really going to take in the whole experience because this is a big opportunity,” he said. “Not a lot of people get to this level. There are tons of fighters out there who will never fight for a world title like this.
“As hard as it is with the training, weight cut, and the stresses of everything of a fight, I always have it in the back of my mind that when I look back when I’m not competing and training and be happy I did it.”
(Photo courtesy of Josh Hill)