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WORDS OF INSPIRATION: What if you're in over your head? Print E-mail
Written by Nick Palmer   
Wednesday, 13 August 2014 14:19

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Each week Minnesota standout amateur fighter Nick "The Inspiration" Palmer is given a free pass to write about any topic, and he provides Minnesota MMA fans with an inside look into the world of fighting. Enjoy "Words of Inspiration.")

I was recently asked the question, "What would you do if a teammate accepted a fight and he’s in way over his head?"

Honestly, I guess I am not sure what I would do.

I don’t think I would tell him he's in way over his head. That would be a mistake.

Even with the odds stacked against you, you still have to get in there and fight.

I’m a firm believer in the theory that "anything can happen" once that cage door closes. Belt rankings and records don’t mean anything. I’ve seen a white belt beat a Tae Kwon Do black belt in a kickboxing bout. And I’ve also seen a purple belt beat a black belt inside the cage.

None of that matters one bit.

The old saying goes, "when you punch a black belt in the face, he becomes a brown belt. Punch him again, and he becomes a purple belt."

For a good frame of reference, take a look at the Anderson Silva fight, when Chris Weidman claimed the UFC's middleweight title.

Not too many people expected Weidman to beat Silva, even though Weidman was undefeated. The odds were heavily stacked against him. But Silva dropped his hands, stuck his chin out and got caught.

You never want to overlook your opponent. It doesn't matter who it is. Overlooking an opponent is a huge mistake, especially in this sport. Trust me, it doesn’t end well most of the time.

I also am a firm believer that the fight is won or lost in the gym and in training. If you approach a fight like you’re going to lose, you’re probably going to lose. Plain and simple.

If my teammate accepted a fight where the odds were stacked against him, I wouldn’t put any doubt in my teammate's mind at all. You can be honest with your teammates, but if a fight is already

inked, putting doubt in your teammate's mind is a huge mistake and it could his him the fight. If they see you doubting them, chances are they’ll start doubting themselves, too.

You have to believe in your teammates in order for them to believe in themselves.

I’ve never had a teammate in this situation, but if I did, I’d definitely be there for them in training. I may even be there for them a little more, helping them crank it up in preparation. They'll definitely need to turn it up a few notches, and I will make them work that much harder when going against me in the gym.

I’d make sure I’m motivating and pushing them to give it everything they had when training. I’d be like a drill sergeant and I’d call them out anytime I suspected they might be slacking or cutting corners in the gym.

I’d also help scout their opponent as if I were scouting my own opponent. I’d find the holes in their game, and I’d make sure my teammate knew how to exploit them.

I would imitate and mimic them as if I were auditioning for a role in a movie based on their life of fighting.

I’d find out what the guy was eating for breakfast, lunch, dinner and I’d eat that too.

OK, I wouldn’t go that far, but you get my point.

Everyone is beatable, and I’d make it my job in finding out how my teammate’s opponent can be taken out.