You don’t have to explain the sport of MMA to Pat Barry, as “HD” understands it quite well.
Barry, who will meet Stefan Struve Saturday night in the co-main event of UFC Live 6, is looking to rebound from a devastating loss to Cheick Kongo in which he was winning the fight before Kongo delivered a hard punch that floored Barry.
“That’s the name of the game,” said Barry, in a recent interview on the UFC website. “We’re gonna knock people out and we’re gonna get knocked out, that’s no avoiding that part of it. I was lucky enough to go a really long time without ever having to come across it, but if you can’t accept getting knocked out or losing or getting hit, then this is the wrong sport to be in.”
If Barry had been a viewer of Kongo’s epic comeback, he would have been a fan, saying, “If that was two other people and not me, that would have been one of my favorite comebacks ever. That’s a cool fight, a cool comeback, and a cool highlight from the first knockdown to the end. It might be the coolest 20 seconds ever.”
Even during a six-year kickboxing career, Barry was never knocked out, so this is all new territory for him. Of course, if he needs advice on how to recover from a knockout loss, he could ask any of the five men he has knocked out in his MMA career.
In Struve, Barry faces a man that stands a foot taller than he does who is also a kickboxer. However, Struve is also coming off a strike-based stoppage with his defeat suffered at the hands of Travis Browne.
“I’ve fought really tall guys in kickboxing and I’ve come across guys like that before,” Barry said. “But I’ve never come across an almost seven foot tall, young, energetic, athletic Dutch kickboxer who is extremely dangerous. And if you know anything about the world of fighting, then you know that Dutch kickboxers are some of the most dangerous kickboxers on Earth.”
For this bout with Struve, Barry left Roufusport in Wisconsin to train with DeathClutch in Minnesota. There, he has been working with wrestlers like Brock Lesnar to get better with takedowns and takedown defense, along with training with more heavyweights.
“If you’re a big guy, you need to train with big guys,” Barry said. “Ever since I made the transition to DeathClutch from Roufusport, I’ve been getting all these messages – ‘Oh, you’re a traitor,’ ‘How could you leave?’ But we need big people to train with. This is what we do, and you gotta be able to simulate it as much as possible.”
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC