The New Jersey Native brought in the legendary strength and conditioning coach for his camp consequently it seems to have had a major effect. Chaimberg has worked with superstars such as Georges St-Pierre, Denis Kang, Rashad Evans, Nate Marquardt, David Loiseau, Keith Jardine and his work is paying off with Pellegrino.
Pellegrino will be back inside the octagon next month when he faces of against Camoes at UFC 111 a fight which could propel Batman even further up the UFC lightweight ladder and put him in the thoughts of Dana White about a potential title fight after three consecutive wins in the UFC.
Pellegrino was forced out of a fight with number one contender Frank Edgar due to herniated discs in his back. With speculation about his back not being fully recovered from that injury Kurt gave his opinion on whether he will ever be recovered from the injury and how disappointing it was to miss out on the chance to fight Edgar. He also revealed how he opted out of back surgery as he felt it would be the end of his career.
Pellegrino also stressed his desire to be the number one contender in the UFC and challenge for the belt this year. So expect big strides from ‘Batman’ this year.
FiveOuncesofPain.com recently caught up with Kurt to discuss a variety of topics such as the camp for his his upcoming bout with Canoes, a neverending back injury, rising to number one at 155 pound in 2010, and much more.
Daniel Craggs of FiveOuncesofPain.com: Your coming off three straight wins in the UFC against Josh Neer, Rob Emerson and Thiago Tavares your next fight is against Fabricio Camoes, are you feeling confident going into this fight?
Kurt Pellegrino: Yes, I’m feeling very confident during training right now. I feel on top of the world and very grateful for my past 3 wins, I just look to keep it going. I will make this fight better than all 3 of those fights combined.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: How’s your camp going for the upcoming fight?
Kurt Pellegrino: Camp is going great. Working on a few new aspects of my game. I brought in Jon Chaimberg as a strength and conditioning coach (coach of Georges St Pierre & Kenny Florian) and he is amazing…making me feel like a monster. I had some great fighters come in and help me train including world champion boxer Miguel Cotto.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: How did the move back the New Jersey to train change your preparation in your last couple of fights?
Kurt Pellegrino: It really did change up a lot of my game. I found myself going back to my mean and nasty old roots and it made me tougher. Florida is awesome and I miss the constant warmer and sunny weather, but I felt it was more of a place to relax and retire, here in Jersey the winters are nasty and it just makes you concentrate in nothing but training. Jersey strong!
FiveOuncesofPain.com: You were forced to pull out of your expected fight against Frankie Edgar at the TUF 10 finale, how disappointed where you to miss out on the chance to fight Edgar?
Kurt Pellegrino: That was a huge disappointment, especially because I know it would have been a great fight. I’ve never pulled out of a fight before because I’m always in denial that my injury isn’t that bad, but this was debilitating and I could hard even sleep at night, let alone train. It was tough, but it’s all a part of this game.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Are you fully recovered from the herniated discs that forced you out of the fight?
Kurt Pellegrino: I think my back will always be an issue for me unfortunately. I opted to not have back surgery because that would really pretty much mean the end of fighting for me, so I have some pain at some points but as long as I keep up with my weekly therapy and massages I have virtually no pain at all. So I’m feeling great and sleeping more than 3 hours a night is always a plus! (laughs)
FiveOuncesofPain.com: If you weren’t an MMA fighter, what would you be?
Kurt Pellegrino: Worlds greatest husband and father (laughs)! In reality, I would be an instructor. I currently own and operate my own academy, Pellegrino Mixed Martial Arts Academy in Belmar NJ www.pellegrinomma.com so when I’m done fighting I will be spend even more of my time at the academy with my students.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Who is your hero and why?
Kurt Pellegrino: My all time hero is Dan Gable for the obvious reasons. Even though it sounds funny I’d have to look up to my 3 year old daughter because she’s always so happy without a care in the world…great way to live (laughs).
FiveOuncesofPain.com: What do you like to do to relax?
Kurt Pellegrino: I’m a low key guy, I like to hang with my wife and daughter, ride my Harley, and teach BJJ, those are my 3 passions in life.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: What are your predictions for Georges St. Pierre vs. Dan Hardy and Frank Mir vs. Shane Carwin at UFC 111?
Kurt Pellegrino: I’m picking GSP by submission or KO and Frank Mir by submission.
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Finally, What do you want the next year to hold for Kurt Pellegrino?
Kurt Pellegrino: For 2010 I want number one contendership and to follow it up with a title shot!
FiveOuncesofPain.com: Do you have any shout outs or thanks to say?
Kurt Pellegrino: Thank you Daniel. Thanks to my fans as well. Follow me on www.twitter.com/kurtpellegrino I’m always having contests and giving away free gear!