Monday, July 21, 2008

Reese Andy Looking to Spoil the Truth

Saturday, July 19, 2008 - by Mitch Gobetz -

Reese Andy may not be known by a lot of fans, especially casual UFC fans. However, he has a chance to propel himself to the forefront of the light heavyweight division, as he will take on Brandon “The Truth” Vera, who is making his debut at 205pounds, on Saturday night at UFC Fight Night 14.

Quite a few fighters, including Dan Henderson, turned down a fight with Vera, but Reese Andy didn’t hesitate. “I was excited about the offer,” said Andy recently on MMAWeekly Radio. “I wasn't going to pick and choose to get into the show I want to get into. I know other guys turned it down and they have their reasons why they're doing it. I'm not going to turn anything down like that.”

Andy has been out of action since June of last year against Krzysztof Soszynski in the International Fight League. Even thought the IFL seems to be in some deep trouble, it wasn’t a lack of fights that kept him out of commission. “After my last fight, I had to get arthroscopic knee surgery and the elbow was all messed up on me last year. I don't think the IFL could keep everybody, so it worked out well for me.”

Brad Blackburn, a teammate of Andy’s, will be making his debut against James Giboo. Having a teammate peaking at the same time as himself only helps Andy in his pursuit to victory over Vera. “We both kind of got smiles on our faces because the IFL isn't doing too hot and we kind of felt like we were doing quite well in the organization and we want to be taken care of,” he explained. “Now, everybody is jumping ship there and getting on other shows. At least the guys who've done well are. The road don't stop.”

Andy is a pretty modest guy, but he realizes that a win over Vera would probably put him on the fast track to UFC fame, considering that Vera is one of their most popular competitors. “I would think so now. I always try to look at it like… ‘yeah, it's pressure’ because just doing the training, the sparring, the working out is hard enough just to out there for one night, fifteen minutes. I do think it will help me as a fighter get more recognition.”

This will be Vera’s first drop to light heavyweight. Some fighters react differently to cutting weight. Instead of recklessly pushing the pace, Andy believes he’ll see how it goes once he enters the Octagon.

“That's something I have to feel out. I may turn it up a notch. But he's kind of like I am. He doesn't like cutting weight. I don't like cutting weight. I don't think anyone out there enjoys cutting weight. People don't want to think about cutting out food. That's why I don't want to fight at 185. I like weighing around 210, 212 and being able to hit 205 in a day.”

While many fighters look to implement a specific game plan in their fights, Andy likes to feel it out in the ring and take advantage of opportunities that his opponents might give him. “I usually don't try to do one thing. I usually wait for an angle and I take it. A hand drop, I'll come over the top. If he starts relaxing, I may turn up the pace and look for a submission, look to pass, look to strike.”

Even though UFC jitters get to many fighters in their debuts, this won’t be the first time Andy has fought in front of large crowds. In fact, he believes his experience will come into play in this fight. “I definitely do. My first fight was in SuperBrawl Icon in front of 8,000 people on a week and a half notice,” he reflected. “That's not a small scene there. I think the Palms are 3,000 or 4,000 attendance. Smaller venue, packed in, loud atmosphere.”

All in all, Andy is looking to spoil Vera’s debut at light heavyweight and go in there calm and collected. “I'm going to some deep breaths and some deep relaxation breathing, and I'm going to take the fight I normally take.”



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