After winning his first six fights in under two minutes each, XFC lightweight prospect Nick “Notorious” Newell was in for a decidedly more difficult time in his last bout this past April versus Chris Coggins.
For the first time in his career, Newell went the full three rounds, and while he managed to pull off the victory, he acknowledges how dire things became during the fight.
“Basically that second round I just got killed,” he said. “I learned a lot about myself. I’m kind of proud of myself for not tapping out. Most people probably would have, but I kind of pushed through and showed people my heart.
“Definitely Chris was a very tough fighter. I don’t think I performed to my full potential, but I needed that fight. I learned more from that fight than I had from all my previous fights combined. It was good to have that war, and luckily I came out on top.”
Newell will hope to capitalize on what he’s learned from his last fight as he heads into XFC 19 in Charlotte, N.C., against David Mays on Aug. 3 in a feature bout to air live on AXS TV.
“It’s another tough fight; I’m not getting any easy fights in the XFC,” said Newell. “(Mays) is a short, pretty stocky guy, and he looks strong and like he’s a pretty good wrestler, but I doubt he’s as good at wrestling as I am. I think wherever the fight goes; I’m going to out-class him.
“Technically-speaking, I’m better standing up and on the ground. He’s tough because he’s always in good shape and always moves forward, so I’ll be ready for that.”
Newell has earned a bit of attention for competing with only one full arm (the other being amputated below his elbow), which could lead people to wonder if his opponents underestimate him. As Newell puts it, if anyone underestimates him, it’s on them and he’s more than happy to take advantage of it.
“I’m going to be in his face. I’m going to be on him. So he’s going to be ready for a different type of fight than my last one, where I kind of sat back,” said Newell. “If he comes at me too careless, I’m going to catch him.
“You can underestimate me all you want, it doesn’t bother me one bit. I’m still going to come and try to take your head off.”
Still in the early stages of his career, Newell told MMAWeekly.com that for now all he wants to do is continue to compete and work his way up the ranks. Whatever comes after is fine with him, he’s just happy being able to live out his dream.
“I just kind of go wherever the path takes me,” he said. “The XFC picked me up when nobody really gave me a chance and I appreciate the opportunity. They do a great job and they’ve proven that they are a great league to fight for.
“I just look forward to fighting tougher and tougher fighters. I can definitely compete with anyone in the world; no matter whoever (it is), I’m ready.”