Erion Zekthi (2-1) will encounter a familiar foe at Shamrock FC 300 on Dec. 1 in a bantamweight bout. That foe is Jordan Collins (1-0), who will be looking to build off his successful pro-MMA debut.
The reason that they’re familiar with one another? The two first fought on March 28, 2014, when they were amateurs. Zekthi submitted Collins in the third round of the fight with an arm triangle choke after controlling most of the fight. At first, Zekthi forgot which submission he used to put Collins away.
“He was so unmemorable, I forgot the details of the first fight,” Zekthi told MMASucka.
Zekthi said he expects Collins to be three times the fighter he fought three-and-a-half years ago, but that Collins doesn’t understand that Zekthi will be an exponentially better fighter.
“He’s a completely different fighter,” Zekthi said. “Here’s what he doesn’t comprehend: I’m a different ****ing fighter. When I fought Collins, I was two years into MMA. Now I’m six years into my career. He cannot hang with me on a physical level. I’m stronger, faster, I have a better chin. I don’t stop. Jordan Collins will break just like I broke him in the first fight. But now, with all the **** he’s been talking, I want him to know he ****ed up.”
“I’m on another level. If I were to fought that Erion, I’d knock him out in the first round. I didn’t know the things that I know now. I didn’t know how I could move my whole body into my strikes, and how to really dig into my counters. The level of strikers and grapplers I’ve trained with since then has improved me drastically.”
Zekthi got off to a great start in his professional career when he submitted Trevor Ward at the end of the second round with a Japanese Necktie. Since then, he has gone to two split decisions; he lost to Demetrius Wilson before coming back and defeating Scott Ettling. Zekthi admitted that he hasn’t showcased the best of his abilities in his last two bouts.
“My skill level is so far above everyone in the local area, but I get caught up in the lights which inhibits my offense,” he said. “Jordan Collins is so ****** that if I can’t put together my full potential, then I should just retire. I need to flourish and open myself up. This is the fight to do it.”
As for how the fight will play out, Zekthi has promised fans a first-round knockout. The fourth minute of the round to be precise.
“This fight, I will not shoot a takedown once,” he said. “I will **** this dude up. I will hurt him bad in the first exchange of the fight. He will not touch me. He will not land a punch. He’s too basic. He didn’t land a ****ing shot in our last fight.”
Get to know Erion Zekthi here.