Fightlab Promotions will be invading Charlotte, NC, once again on August 6th to shine the light on a lot of very good up and comers. There will be a featherweight unification match on this card featuring the #2 and #3 ranked amateur featherweights in North and South Carolina. Mike Powell became the Fightlab interim featherweight champion when the champion at the time Christian Brunetti was deployed to serve in our United States Army. Brunetti has returned from service so these two rising stars have decided to lock horns to see who the boss is on August 6th. Pro MMA Now (www.prommanow.com) was able to catch up with the interim champion Mike Powell, to get his thoughts on the fight and to determine what dance he’ll be doing if he wins and more. Check it out below:
Pro MMA Now-Hey Mike…thanks for speaking with Pro MMA Now. Tell us how you are feeling right now and how has training camp gone for this fight you have on August 6th?
Mike Powell-Ahhha lets see I played alot of Angry Birds and ate alot of Chick fila! Ha, in all seriousness technique wise this has been my best camp to date and I have actually boxed a little. I’ve worked with a world champion black belt from Brazil in Professor Céleo Correia….not to cover the back story, but I’m not with my boy Brian Keller anymore per say. He’s still my brother and a great friend, but I’m not under him now. I’ve been coached up by a young Ali Deif and a Army vet in Ramsie Nimmer who have brought in guys to help me out of the wazoo. It’s been a great camp and my weight is nice and low because I actually dieted this time.
Pro MMA Now– Cool. Now you’re only 19 years old, but already have 5 fights under your belt going (4-0 1 NC). Obviously you have accomplished quite a bit in your career at such a young age. How did you get introduced to MMA and what can you attribute your success to?
Mike Powell-In all seriousness Kelvin, I did a senior project on how jiu jitsu played into MMA to graduate high school. I was actually training as part of my project so Brian Keller took me up to Akron, Ohio. I witnessed his whole camp and I made my mind up on the way back that I wanted to fight.
Pro MMA Now-Let’s talk about your fight coming up. Now you’re ranked at #2 and Chris Brunetti is ranked at #3 as amateur featherweights in North and South Carolina. I know you and Brunetti mutually respect one another, but is there anything that he does that impresses you or anything you need to be on the lookout for?
Mike Powell-Umm I do respect Brunetti and I’m not one to bash anyone that hasn’t bashed me, but I don’t see anything I need to be wary of. He doesn’t have any knockouts on his record so I’m not worried about his power standing and I feel that I’m a better wrestler and that my jiu jitsu is better as well. So the only thing I’ve raised my eyebrow at was his cardio, but I made sure I was right on there. With this being said were gonna see where he’s at on August 6th we don’t know what he’s changed while he’s been gone.
Pro MMA Now-Now it’ll be over a year since Chris has fought due to serving in the military. You’ve been really active in the last year or so, do you consider that an advantage coming into this fight?
Mike Powell-No. I know the Army has several good combative gyms over there so he’s gonna be the best he can. The dude can’t be a push over with an undefeated record. He knows what it takes to win and so does our Army.
Pro MMA Now-Let’s talk about the titles for a second. I mentioned that Chris has been deployed serving in our military and he was the Fightlab featherweight champion prior to getting deployed and you became the interim champion during that time. So this fight is a unification bout. I have to ask…who will be the Fightlab featherweight champion at the end of the night on August 6th?
Mike Powell-Technically I feel I should be the champion…I defended mybelt and tore through our 1 and only common opponent without ever training. Therefore I’m going with me but I’ll let you guys have your own opinions.
Pro MMA Now-I know you can only speak for yourself, but why should fans come to see this fight other than it being between two of the best amateur featherweights in North and South Carolina?
Mike Powell-I’ll be watching the rest of the card from Christian Sinnot to Chris Davis to Keith Richardson. It’s the best promotion in North and South Carolina. As for this fight, they should come see two guys that wanna finish a fight get after it. A decision over me don’t mean you won, it means time ran out so I suggest he puts me away because I’m gonna try and send him away.
Pro MMA Now-Yea, those are some talented guys. Why do you fight? The competition, notoriety?
Mike Powell-Man I fight because I like to….I grew up in the same damn neigboorhood as Cody Wells ask him. It wasn’t easy being white and cool with everybody. You had to fight at least twice a week or you got your ass beat twice a week and didn’t have a bike to ride home. It;’s kind of ingrained in who I’ve become and I’m small so I ain’t trying to go to jail….ever.
Pro MMA Now-Word. If you could combine the skills of two fighters…who would it be and why?
Mike Powell-As per me I would take Dan Henderson’s wrestling and Jose Aldo’s stand up.
Pro MMA Now-Eww…I probably would have never thought of that combo, but that’s pretty sick! Now, I noticed that you do post-fight interviews at some of the Fightlab shows and they are pretty funny. How’d that come about and why do you always ask guys to do a little dance after you interview them?
Mike Powell-Actually my good friend Chaz Bryant was missing his interviewer so I told him I would do it. I was told to keep it light so I figured the dances wouldn’t make it past editing but now they’ve kind of stuck ….but it’s all for fun.
Pro MMA Now– So will you be dancing on August 6th? If so, what dance will you being doing?
Mike Powell-I’ve been practicing my John Wall and I also learned how to ‘cat daddy’ so probably gonna be doing some dancing!
Pro MMA Now-Ok winding down…what is something about Mike that people would be surprised to know?
Mike Powell-Let’s see. What would surprise ? Ummm damn I have a dog named moo cow powell? Umm I mean if I knew I wouldn’t tell you, but I don’t have much out of the waybecause most people can’t believe I fight but the cats out of the bag there!
Pro MMA Now-Do you have any sponsors you would like to thank or any shoutouts?
Mike Powell-Man I don’t actually have any sponsors. No one wants to get back to me about anything so if there are any sponsors that read this and wanna pick me up I’m all for it. I’ve gotta thank my family, my trainers, training partners, friends, and my girlfriend. I’ve gotta thank Brian Keller for putting me on, and I’ve gotta thank Kelvin Hunt for making people believe I’m better than I really am by ranking me second…..thank you buddy.