Combat Vision MMA were lucky enough to speak to Nathan “Mr Bag & Tag” Jones after the weigh-in for his fight against Umer “BulletTooth” Kayani at Bellator 179. Nathan has five professional first round finishes.
Combat Vision MMA asked Nathan about his thoughts on his Bellator 179 opponent Umer “BulletTooth” Kayani and their face-off on Thursday afternoon.
“I fought him four years ago in K1 and I stopped him in the 2nd round”
“He saw me before I saw him. As soon as I saw him, I walked up to him and he waited to see what my approach was. There has been a bit of backwards and forwards with spiteful comments from both parties. He was cool and we shook hands. We are ready to put it on the line on Friday night. But, I am a different calibre of a fighter than he has fought before. Definitely, 100% a different calibre fighter from four years ago”
Is there anything in Umer Kayani’s fighting style or performances that you will be looking to exploit come fight night?
“I believe my movement is more varied than his. I come from a kickboxing background. Expect to see attacks on both stances, good footwork and angles. I am a very versatile fighter. When I am ready, I will go for the kill, whether that be striking or grappling. I firmly believe I will stop him”
Nathan Jones was asked about his losses. He is the type of fighter who has never lost by TKO/KO or been stopped in the early rounds. His losses have come by way of unanimous decision.
“Wherever the fight goes, you can’t predict it. A lot of those decision losses were close”
Nathan was on a five-fight win streak for it to be derailed in a unanimous decision loss to Peter Queally. How did that loss affect him and what did the loss tell him about the type of fighter that he is to be able to bounce back like he did against Walter Gahadza?
“It didn’t affect me too much. In this sport, you win and lose some. As long as you are taking step ups and tests to challenge yourself. If it pays off, it pays off. And if it doesn’t, you have to learn from those mistakes. In the fight with Queally, I received a critical blow early on and I ended up seeing double. It was my ring craft that enabled me to finish the fight, it was a close fight. I am an experienced fighter and I can adapt to the situation”
Combat Vision MMA asked Nathan about the deal with Bellator.
“I am currently signed to BAMMA as I recently signed a year contract (up to four fights). Bellator is a one fight deal. But who knows. Fighting with Bellator credits me as a legitimate fighter. However, it is still a fight, still a cage with an opponent who is trying to take my head off. But, I don’t put this on a pedestal. Go in, get paid and roll out”
After Bellator, when does Nathan hope to be back in the cage with BAMMA.
“September time, after the summer. Go on holiday and then away somewhere to train. Ready for when the fighting season starts back up again”
What about the Terry Brazier call-out and the vacant BAMMA welterweight title.
“There are two contenders that are able to fight me. Alex Lohore and Terry Brazier. Both of them want a piece of “Bag and Tag”. Both of them recognise the skills and see me as a credible opponent. And the world title is the sufficient prize for that calibre of match up”
“Out of the two, I would rather fight Terry. Because he has shown me enough respect and it is an opportunity for the both of us. I would rather we have this opportunity together. If it was someone who I wanted to beat up, I would prefer to fight Alex Lohore. But, it is not down to me to choose my opponent. My job is to get in there and do the business, starting with Kayani”
Watch Nathan Jones last fight against Walter Gahadza at BAMMA 27