As Bellator continues to expand, so does the role of former featherweight champion Joe Warren.
As part of the recently debuted reality television series Fight Master: Bellator MMA, Warren joins Randy Couture, Frank Shamrock and Greg Jackson as a quartet of coaches vying to get a fighter from their respective teams into this upcoming season’s welterweight tournament.
Fight Master airs weekly on Wednesday nights on Spike TV at 10 p.m. ET.
“I was excited,” said Warren about being approached for the show. “I knew Randy, I knew Greg, and I got to know Frank real well, so I was excited to get an opportunity to be on the show with them and support Bellator as much as I could.
“It was a great experience. The chemistry between the four of us was great. We respect each other a lot and things went real smooth. To get the chance to get up there and coach against them, it was really fun, interesting and I learned a lot.”
Along with the four-coach format, Fight Master looks to differentiate itself from other shows by having an extremely diverse selection of fighters.
“There’s guys that had headlined events on TV and guys that people really don’t know yet. It was a pleasure to work with guys who were serious professionals to guys who were new to this sport also,” said Warren. “It was a nice contrast between the young guys and the veterans and I think it will come across well on television.”
Warren says Fight Master will be much more detail-oriented than the genre’s other offering, The Ultimate Fighter, thanks to the expanded number of coaches and limited size of each team.
“With the differences of four coaches and small teams rather than two coaches with huge teams, you’ll see a lot more one-on-one training and the differences between me and Greg or me and Frank will come out,” he said. “I think you’ll really be able to get into the training part of the fights rather than just the personal parts of it.”
As far as his coaching style, Warren told MMAWeekly.com that he chose to focus on the mental aspect of training rather than the physical.
“I worked a lot on my mental game plan instead of the physical and really focused on little strategy points; what you do in certain situations, how I refocus and get back into a comfort zone and perform,” he said.
“I’m interested to see if that comes across to the public because it’s the way that I’ve been training my whole life that if you have your mind right, your body can do almost anything.”
Aside from Fight Master, Warren will return to fighting on the show’s finale on Sept. 7 against Nick Kirk in what the 36-year-old fighter hopes is the start of one final run at glory.
“They’re giving me the chance to just do television and not have to fight anymore, but I still have the muscle memory and the technique and it’s safer for me to get in the cage now than it’s ever been, so they’re letting me fight and I’m happy for it,” he said.
“I’m going to make one more push for a belt and leave it in the cage and see what happens.”
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