Looking back on his flyweight title defense versus Claudio Ledesma in June at Titan FC 55, Juan Puerta feels like the fight went just about as well as he could have hoped. He plans to follow up with another solid performance at Titan FC 57.
Over the course of five rounds, Puerta was able to control the bout with Ledesman, eventually earning a unanimous decision victory in his first title defense.
“Claudio is tough,” Puerta told MMAWeekly.com. “He’s a black belt in Jiu-Jitsu. He’s a very experienced fighter. He’s fought UFC vets, so he has a lot of experience. He was just a tough guy.
“He was tough to finish, but I just felt I was technically better everywhere and I think I showed it in the fight. I won all five rounds. It was a good fight for me. It was good to fight a tough dude who wouldn’t give up. It was good experience. Right now I feel like I’m in my prime and it was a good fight.”
Having gone to decisions in three-round bouts previously, Puerta feels like he was able to go five rounds without issue, and could have gone longer if needed.
“I felt so strong, even in that fifth round,” said Puerta. “I was expecting to move more in the fifth, but I had his back the whole five rounds. It kind of drained my legs into that fifth round, but my cardio felt amazing.
“I just feel like a real mature fighter now. I’m going on my 24th pro fight and I feel great. I thought those five rounds were easy, and I could go six, seven, if I need to.”
On Saturday in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Puerta (17-6) will look to pick up his second title defense when he faces Reynaldo Adolfo de los Santos (6-1) in a main card 125-pound championship bout at Titan FC 57.
“Reynaldo is going to be a really tough fight,” Puerta said. “From what I’ve seen about him, he’s super-explosive, super-talented on his feet, and is super-powerful. I’m expecting to weather the storm in the first and second round, then take it to him in the third, fourth, and fifth.
“I’m going to take him into deep waters and drown him like a shark. I feel like in the third, fourth, and fifth round I’ll be able to capitalize on my ground and takedowns and look for that submission or TKO stoppage.”
When it comes to remainder of 2019, if Puerta is healthy he’ll try to get in another fight wherever and whenever he can to close out the year.
“I’m training full time all the time,” said Puerta. “Even with time off I’m in training. If I go out of the country or on vacation I’ll find a gym and will go get my work in. I’m all-year fighter. I love it.
“I know that after this fight I’m going to stay in shape and will be ready for whatever comes. Right now I’m focused on defending my belt on October 19, but if I’ll be ready for December for Titan or wherever – I’ll be ready.”