A few miscues aside, lightweight Zach Underwood’s debut in Bellator on Aug. 24 went well and he picked up a victory on a major show and got a bit of revenge in the process.
“I think I landed a few shots, and could have landed a few more, but I ended up in a few bad habits that I got to get rid of,” said Underwood of his unanimous decision win over Chris Coggins. “Chris is a tough guy and it’s a good win for me to have. He beat me before, so it’s good to go out there and get that out of the way.
“I knew he was a tough guy and he wasn’t going to quit, and those the type of guys you have to get up for. Those types of guys are good for your resume.”
Much like teammate Rick Glenn, who picked up his own big win recently, Underwood’s development has had exponential growth thanks to the Roufusport fight team in Milwaukee, Wis.
“I always go up to Milwaukee to Roufusport for training and to learn new things and add new tricks so when I go out there I’m not the same fighter,” said Underwood. “I’m prepared for battle every time I leave there.
“When we show up we have our man-talk sessions and when the bell rings, it is what it is and we just knock the crap out of each other. We rarely fight when we train and that makes you close and respect each other. Not many people can train like that.”
As Underwood has progressed, he’s come to realize the importance of his fights, and uses that as a motivational tool to help him get better.
“A win’s important to me where I’m at and a loss would set me back big time,” said Underwood. “It has to motivate me. If it doesn’t, I don’t know why I’m still fighting. It motivates me to get better.
“My record is getting pretty good now. I was 8-4 (following a loss to Mike Santiago in May of last year), but now I’m back on track again at 10-4 with a couple more wins and I’m feeling good.”
After some time off, Underwood told MMAWeekly.com that he’s ready to get back into fight mode and anticipates getting back into the cage soon to build off his recent momentum.
“I just took a week off to heal my body,” he said. “I had a tough eight weeks to prepare for the fight and I wanted a week away so I don’t get burnt out. I’ll probably know something soon and I’ll start dieting again. I’m already back in the gym and ready to start things back up again.”