After an announcement by Jon Anik on ESPN’s MMA Live last week that the UFC had released welterweight Matt “The Immortal” Brown, it looked as if The Immortal one would have to find life outside the UFC Octagon.
The report of Brown’s release turned out to be false. ProMMAnow.com spoke with Matt Brown today and he has officially confirmed his days in the UFC are not over, and in fact, The Ultimate Fighter season seven veteran is considering a move up to the 185-pound middleweight division.
Brown said he called UFC matchmaker Joe Silva to thank him for not releasing him because he knows it is not their normal practice to hold on to a fighter with three losses in a row.
If one considers what separates Brown from other fighters the UFC has released under similar circumstances, the fact that only one of his fights inside the Octagon has gone to a decision is bound to factor in.
Most recently, Brown was submitted by Brian Foster in the second round at UFC 123. He talked about what went wrong. “I definitely don’t think I did the best I could. The fight was going probably about as I expected other than I just really wasn’t letting my hands go enough,” said Brown.
“With Foster, it was just a stupid mistake. Like I come up for a single leg and got Guillotined and you know, I practiced that move a million times. I knew he liked to stand over you in guard, he doesn’t like to get in your guard a whole lot. So I practiced that a lot where I come up with a single leg and was executing it great in practice, and I’m normally a really hard guy to Guillotine, but he actually got my arm caught in there so I couldn’t defend the way I normally would. Just learning things. More power to him but I don’t think it would happen again.””
Prior to Foster, Brown was submitted by Chris Lytle at UFC 116 and Ricardo Almeida at UFC 111. “Almeida and Lytle, those are pretty two damn good submission guys,” Brown said. “Those were just putting myself in situations I shouldn’t have been in, allowing myself to get in situations I shouldn’t have been in. Just small mistakes.”
When Brown first arrived in the UFC he was living in Ohio and training with Team Jorge Gurgel. He later moved to Las Vegas, but currently lives in Seattle and trains with Matt Hume. However, as a new father of twins, Brown is planning to return to Ohio soon where he can be near his family and get some much needed help with the babies.
Although Jorge Gurgel is a BJJ black belt and has helped produce some amazing submission fighters, Brown doesn’t feel his move away from Team Gurgel is a reason for his recent submission losses.
“Matt Hume is probably the best coach I could ever imagine. It’s not like I was getting shorted on my submission defense or offense or my grappling at all,” said Brown. “The biggest thing about me coming back to Ohio is the positive influence it will have on my life as a whole. This is where I’m from, and with the twins, they will be around my family more. In that sense I think I will be more relaxed and more comfortable and being my home state, I think it will be better for me overall. And still here I work with Ohio State wrestlers and Jorge Gurgel’s and I can still get good training here too.”
Brown told Joe Silva he was considering a move to middleweight. He explained his reasons.
“The weight cut has gotten more and more difficult for me the last couple of years,” said Brown “I don’t know why. Maybe my body is just filling out and getting bigger or whatever, but the weight cut has been really really bothering me so I’ve been considering moving up to 185.”
Silva did not give him an idea of when his next fight may be but wanted to give him some time to get his weight where it needs to be.
“He didn’t really give me a time frame,” said Brown. “He told me just call him whenever I need cause if I move up I’m probably going to have to put on a few pounds of muscle. Basically he told me to ‘put on some weight and call me when you’re ready.’ So my plan is pretty much to relax through the holidays, spend time with my new babies. During training camp I didn’t really get to be a dad much, you know, I was training a lot. So I’m going to spend time and be a dad for a little while, then get my [expletive] together, then try to get back in there and [expletive] someone up. ”
Brown has fought at 185 quite a few times earlier in his career, so the move would not be something totally foreign to him. Before he makes his final decision though he wants to check with a nutritionist.
Can you picture Matt Brown with 15-pounds of muscle added on? That is a pretty scary thought.
On a side note, for anyone who may have ever wondered if Matt Brown, who happens to be from Xenia, Ohio, has ever seen the movie Gummo (which is set in Xenia), he has not. But he wants to.