When it comes to his first two fights as a pro, lightweight prospect Sherrard Blackledge hasn’t had the opportunity to prepare like he would have, but has still managed to come out on top in each bout.
First against JorDan Christensen in November of last year at FFC 33, then versus Alvin Davis at Island Fights 54 this past March, Blackledge was able to two different types of performances en route to getting wins in his first two pro bouts.
“They’ve been pretty short notice, so I haven’t really been able to prepare to my fullest capabilities, but I think they’ve gone great,” Blackledge told MMAWeekly.com. “I’ve gone out and performed how I trained. I train hard every day and it’s showed.
“My first one (versus Christensen) was taken on seven days’ notice and at a higher weight class, so I didn’t get the results I kind of wanted, but I still won the fight. My last one they switched my opponent about five days out (to Davis), but I trained hard and was still able to get to my peak (and pick up the win).”
Having previously spent a couple years building himself in the amateur ranks before turning pro, Blackledge feels like his time there was essential to helping him out with such a strong start in his first two bouts.
“It helped my mindset a lot more,” said Blackledge. “It helped me analyze people before the fight, in the fight, and got me comfortable in there. I wasn’t afraid to get in there and throw. I wasn’t afraid to get in there and show what I do.
“It helped me get over my emotions. Going into my pro career was to leave my emotions out of it. Go in there, do it like its business. When it’s business, you don’t let your emotions lead you.”
This Friday in Las Vegas, Nevada, Blackledge (3-0) will look to remain undefeated when he takes on Carlos Garnett Jr. (2-1) in a main card 155-pound bout at FFC 35.
“I just need to go out there and perform and do my thing,” Blackledge said. “Do what I do every single day of training. I train in every aspect of the sport, so I’m not afraid to go to the ground, I’m not afraid to go out and strike.
“I would love if (Garnett) would just stand there and bang with me; that’d be ideal for me; but I don’t see it going like that. I’m ready to finish the fight anywhere it goes.”
When it comes to 2019, Blackledge isn’t so much focused on where he fights, but has his mind set on making sure he develops and improves each time out.
“My goal is to progress every single fight,” said Blackledge. “If I go out there and throw a bunch of shots and none of them land, that’s something I’m going to work on. If I go out there and get taken down a lot, that’s something I’m going to work on. If I’m not progressing then I’m not doing it right.”