Patrick Mix on Horiguchi “Defending the belt one time a year, that’s just bullshit”

Patrick Mix
Patrick Mix Photo courtesy of Bellator MMA Patrick Mix (11-0) defeated Ricky Bandejas (11-3) via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:06 of round one
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Patrick Mix is facing Isaiah Chapman at Bellator 232. This wasn’t always the case though. Mix was initially scheduled to fight Dominic Mazzotta but an injury Mazzotta suffered scrapped that. Champman took the short-notice opportunity and now we have a fun bantamweight bout this weekend. Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut will showcase some of the world’s greatest MMA fighters back to back nights. The main card bout between Mix and Chapman goes on Saturday night.

Patrick Mix Sophomore Bellator Performance

Many fans are excited for the second Bellator MMA bout for the man known as ‘Patchy’. Mix debuted with an emphatic finish over the well regarded Ricky Bandejas. Beating one of Bellator’s top bantamweights is worthwhile enough but there was so much more at play.

Mix stated, “It was pretty sweet fighting in Madison Square Garden. I’m not going to lie. I’m from New York. It couldn’t have gone any better unless I did some damage first. I don’t even think, I’ve got my gloves hanging up in my house, I think I landed one punch in the fight and one elbow. I wanted to land some more leather in the fight. Just break those gloves in. But it went perfect, I guess. I got the submission early, I got out of there quick, I got some fast easy money. So I was very happy.”

Mix spoke about Bandejas with a defined level of respect. He felt Ricky narrowly lost to Juan Archuleta and he illustrated what he was able to do in finishing Bandejas. Admittedly, MMA math is not an unassailably solid thing but Mix has proven himself against talented opposition.

Patrick Mix Bellator 232

The switch from Mazzotta to Chapman did little to fluster Mix at all. He said, “I make adjustments on the fly, man. So it’s more about me. If I win here, it’s 23 in a row. So it’s always just me vs myself. I don’t really think too much about the opponent. My coaches do. But I’m prepared I think they’re both similar styles. Ground fighters with some standup. Boxing but not much kicks.”

Mix continued, “He’s got a good guillotine. He can wrestle well. I think he offers a lot to the table but I think I’m on another level. I just plan on going out there and showing that.” One name that has been brought up on and off for Patchy is James Gallagher. Both had short notice opponents in their last bouts. Mix used that to illustrate a point about both as MMA fighters.

He stated, “That match isn’t coming to fruition. He fights a guy on a three-fight losing streak. I fight a guy on a three-fight winning streak. My level of competition’s higher. I finish these guys. He doesn’t want anything to do with me. I know he doesn’t want that fight. I’m not really chasing James Gallagher. What I’m really chasing is Horiguchi and that title. I’ll take out whatever contenders that are in my way to get to the belt.”

Bellator bantamweight belt

It seems like the upper echelon of Bellator’s 135 lb class has been in a bit of a state of disarray lately.  Divisional kingpin Kyoji Horiguchi was knocked out in a big upset loss while over in Rizin. Former champion Darrion Caldwell is presently competing in Bellator’s featherweight grand prix.

When I asked Mix about the tumultuous environment lately, he said “Caldwell he did a good job his last fight. The fight before that just sucked against Horiguchi. He has a good shot at winning the million dollars. If he wins the million dollars, I doubt he’ll come back down to 35. And Horiguchi got knocked out. I don’t know if he’s trying to chase that to avenge his loss. But I get paid regardless. So I’m just trying to stay busy and fight.”

Mix is focused on what he’s doing but ultimately part of that focus is centered on having the belt. Mix wants that crack at Horiguchi and his intensity when discussing it was palpable. Patrick Mix said, “This whole thing about him being in Japan and defending the belt one time a year, that’s just bullshit.  We need to have this on American soil. You need to have an active champion and I’m gonna be the guy.”

Lately, Patchy is coaching a little bit at Jackson Wink and is a full-time fighter there. He also teaches high school wrestling but a bit less frequently lately. He is now going all-in with some of the MMA masterminds at Jackson Wink. Interestingly enough, he only really started training full time around the Bandejas fight. Mix is fully immersing himself in achieving this goal but with that comes sacrifice.

Sacrifices on the Road to Gold

Patchy has a young daughter and there are certain stretches where refining his techniques has to be the number one focus. Patrick Mix said, “It’s been even outside of fight camps. I do go home and spend as much time at home as possible. I will be home after this fight for three months I believe. To coach my wrestling season. My daughter’s at home and I’m making a sacrifice to be here.”

He continued, “I just gotta get that belt because it’s life-changing money. No more peanuts after I get there. If I keep putting these guys away, I change her life. I could change my life and I could change my family’s life. I know what this sacrifice means. It’s like I’m in the military. Short term sacrifice for very long term gain. I just turned 26 years old. This is the time to do it.”

You can listen to the audio from my interview with Patrick Mix here.


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