Following a first round submission victory this past February over Chris Bungard at Bellator 240, lightweight Brent Primus was looking to have a big year in 2020 when the novel coronavirus put his plans in jeopardy.
For Primus, the reality of how quickly the world could change hit him pretty hard after having to travel internationally for his fight with Bungard.
“It’s definitely shocking and crazy,” Primus told MMAWeekly.com. “I never thought something like that would happen. I actually fought in Ireland in February and had been there for a week, and soon as I came back to the United States and landed that’s when they locked down Ireland.
“I’m trying to get three fights in this year, and hopefully it doesn’t put a hold on that. I’m hoping everything goes back to normal sometime soon.”
Just staying active became an issue, as Primus found it difficult to get in training at the same level he had been used to over the course of his career during lockdown.
“It stopped my training for a while,” said Primus. “We could only find one or two guys who wanted to train. Still, the training was not what I wanted it to be.
“It’s still not 100 percent and still not like it was. It’s picking up a little bit here and there, but it definitely put my training on hold, for sure.”
On May 31 in Portland, Ore., Primus will shift his focus from MMA to grappling when he faces Jake Shields in a Submission Underground 14 main card bout.
“This is my background,” Primus said. “This is where I started at. This is where my roots are. I’ve always wanted to compete in SUG. I think Chael does an awesome event. I’ve always wanted to be on that card.
“I’m getting Jake Shields, and he’s kind of an old school legend in the grappling world. When I first started doing this I watched him on Strikeforce, so it’s going to be awesome going against him for sure.”
When it comes to MMA, Primus has a tentative bout slated for the summer, and would like to have more if possible before the end of 2020.
“I signed a fight a month and a half, two months, ago, and I’m hoping that doesn’t get cancelled or postponed or anything like that,” said Primus. “It’s stressful training and not knowing if I’m going to have a fight, if it’s going to be postponed to a later date. It’s stressful for sure.
“I want to fight as much as I can. I want to get in at least two more fights before 2021, that’s the goal, for sure.”