Jeff Rexroad discusses Macaco’s injury and his interim title fight versus Lucas Pimenta at Legacy 14
It was an opportunity to test himself against a legend in the sport and someone who’s been beating the best of the best to compete in the Legacy Fighting Championship at his division. Macaco has even beaten Mike “The Greek” Bronzoulis, a training partner of the Houston PD task force member at Paradigm Training Center.
Sadly, Macaco suffered a torn ACL injury recently that will keep him on the shelf for around a year, give or take.
The division must now go on and in steps another Gold Team fighter in Lucas Pimenta to take the place on Macaco and face Rexroad in an interim title fight this Friday night at the Houston Arena Theatre as the main event of Legacy Fighting Championship 14 on AXS TV.
We recently caught up with Jeff Rexoad on the eve of the title shot he’s been waiting on for almost a year to get his thoughts on Friday’s main event, what he thinks about no longer being able to face Patino, and how he feels about his replacement Lucas Pimenta.
Interview – Jeff Rexroad (Paradigm Training Center)
First of all, how are you feeling about your fight next Friday?
I know you were looking forward to the Macaco fight. What do you think about the opponent change? Any thoughts on Macaco’s injury?
Yeah, I’m pretty bummed that Macaco got injured. I was really looking forward to the fight because I think our styles would have made for a fantastic main event. I hope the injury isn’t too severe and he can get back to training soon. I would never wish that kind of injury on anyone.
How does this change your mindset going in? Have you had any chance to review footage of Pimenta?
It doesn’t really change my mindset at all. I was preparing for Macaco who is a super tough and very experienced fighter. Lucas is younger but has shown a lot of power and skill in his 8 victories. So, I’m still facing a tough opponent and I’m prepared for whatever happens. I’ve seen a couple of his fights on YouTube but there’s not really a whole lot to gain from that. I’m just focusing on what I need to do and making Lucas fight the fight I want and not focus on what he’s going to do.
As for the opponent change, it’s always tough to change opponents 8 days out from the fight. I’ve spent a lot of time working on things specifically for Macaco and now I’ll be facing someone totally new. I think the biggest difference is the fact that Lucas is southpaw which will make me do some things a little differently. However, in the grand scheme of things I think that Lucas has a similar style as Macaco, just not as wild and unpredictable. I am confident that a lot of the things i have been working on will translate well into the fight with Lucas.
He’s similar to Macaco in a lot of ways. He’s a very skilled BJJ Black Belt who doesn’t mind standing and banging it out with people. However, I don’t think he is as unpredictable as Macaco and doesn’t have quite the experience level. However, he makes up for all of that by being young and eager to prove himself every fight.
I think we match up quite well. He likes to stand and bang and we all know that I’m down for a good old fashioned slobber-knocker. But I think that while he’s a Black Belt I still match up well against him on the ground. MMA grappling is a lot different than sport BJJ and I’m confident in my ability to control things on the ground.
What type of fight can the fans expect, especially considering this is a three round title fight?
I think this fight will be a lot of fists smashing faces…with the occasional takedown thrown in for fun. I think it will be and exciting fight that could end at any moment.
It is a little weird that it’s a 3 round title fight, but from my understanding that was the only way he would accept the fight. I jumped at the chance to fight because I’ve spent too much time training and I’ve been looking forward to this title shot for a long time.
Are there any other fights on the card you’re looking forward to personally?
As for other fights on the card…I’m always excited to see my training partners fight. So, I’m looking forward to watching Lester and Jonathan fight as well as Patrick Green and Kaileb Cummins. I think we will come away with victories in both fights.
Other than that I’m interested in seeing how Darrion Caldwell transitions from wrestling to MMA…and Banuelos is always exciting to watch.
Any last words Jeff?
I just want to thank my wife Danese for making so many sacrifices that allow me to do all of this. Also, Ragan McDaniel and everyone at B3 Sports for helping me out with a lot of stuff leading up to this fight. Of course I couldn’t do what i do without some awesome coaches so I want to thank Mike Altman, Grant Johnson, and Igor Santos for putting so much time and effort into getting me ready for this fight.
TXMMA Tournament Recap – 2013 Torque Open
Carlos Diego Ferreira Set for Impossible MMA/BJJ Double Feature
Tournament Recap – 2013 AGF Spring Classic
Cage Combat 14 – Fight Night Recap
STFC 25 – Phalanx’s Derek Perkins looking for 2nd win in South Texas
The Difference between Freedom of Speech and Freedom from Consequence
Technique of the Week – Cyborg Abreu & Hunter Ewald
Houston MMA In Focus – Garcia Promotions’ Cage Combat 14 Preview
Texans ready for 2013 IBJJF Worlds; Photo flashback from last year’s edition
TXMMA Tournament Season Recap – The 2013 IBJJF Dallas International Open
Ryan “Babyface” Benoit primed to make the most of MFC debut; Faces Anthony Birchak in AXS TV main event at MFC 37
Kru Pong and Toon: A Traditional Thai Experience in Houston, Texas – Part 1 of 2