Yair Rodriguez is the latest top UFC fighter to reveal he no longer trains in the gym. Typically, combat practice is one of the cornerstones of a fighter’s training camps. However, Rodriguez decided the health risks associated with the beatings were too great.
In a recent interview with MMA Skillsrodriguez said:
“So no, I’m not interested in taking hits in training. They don’t pay for that. They pay me to fight once I’m in the cage. I try to protect myself from the most possible impact to have on my head.
“I’m not going to forget how to fight. I have many, many years in combat sports – I’ve been in this field since I was 5 years old in many sports. So now I just focus on the aspects technical, tactical and physical It’s basically about knowing what to do, what not to do and developing my stamina for the fight.
Watch Yair Rodriguez discuss his preparations to fight Brian Ortega below:
Yair Rodriguez’s last fight was against Max Holloway, another elite forward who went out of training but still has one of the tightest strikes in the UFC. While “El Pantera” lost that fight by decision, he proved he could stay with “Blessed” at the top of the featherweight division.
Now he takes on Brian Ortega at UFC on ABC 3, and while “T-City” doesn’t have the same level of punching prowess, his submission game is unmatched at 145 pounds.
Yair Rodriguez is sad he never got to fight Zabit Magomedsharipov
Yair Rodriguez was expected to face Zabit Magomedsharipov twice during their years as rising featherweight contenders, but for various reasons the fights never managed to materialize.
Now Magomedsharipov has retired from active competition and Rodriguez is sad that he never got to compete. In a new interview with MMA Skillshe said:
“Yeah, it kinda saddens me because there was a lot of talk – especially him. He said a lot of things. It’s sad that I can’t finish something that’s been started. For some reason, it didn’t materialize. But either way, I have no hard feelings towards him. I hope he does very well in whatever he decides to do. If he gets hurt or sick, I hope he recovers and wish him the best.
Magomedsharipov leaves the sport as one of MMA’s great “what if” stories. The Russian fighter left with an 18-1 record after a 2019 victory over Calvin Kattar, cementing him as a legitimate contender in the 145-pound division.