For Brian Ebersole, UFC fighter and Tiger Muay Thai & MMA’s Head MMA Coach, that time is now. An injury has forced Claude Patrick to withdraw from his UFC 149 Fight on July 21 in Calgary. Riding a hot streak, Ebersole has stepped in to face James Head in a welterweight match-up…only weeks removed from his UFC win over T.J. Waldburger at UFC on FX 4. Ebersole is 4-0 in the UFC and has no intention of easing up.
Recently, the fighter took a few minutes to converse with his TMT family about what the opportunity means for him.
1. What was your first thought when the request to take Claude Patrick’s place came in?
Can I re-arrange my travel/life plans, to fit in this fight? I travel overseas very soon, and will be postponing my Chicago departure. I also wondered if my partner and personal trainer (Alecia Brazenall) would have enough time left on her USA visa.
2. What’s the training plan now? (How do you go back into training when you’ve just started to relax?)
I did start to relax. I was enjoying some food before the big lifestyle change and intended drop to 155. So I’d been enjoying a bit of animal product and beer for nearly a week. I’m now dropping the beverages and doing without animal products. I’m getting back into the gym. I’m hoping I still have that spring in my step. After only a week, I’m sure I’ll rebound nicely in regards to fitness level.
3. Did you learn anything from your last fight that you’ll be taking with you into your fight with James Head?
That I can fight 15 minutes without gassing out…that I can indeed win two rounds in a row when the pressure is on… and that there are some guys out there that can take my G ‘n P without dying — so I need to be persistent, diligent, and aware of opportunities. TJ kept throwing sub attempts when I thought he was nearly dead. So either there are some cyborgs out there, or I’m not as powerful as I thought. Either way, I fight til the finish!
4. Is the pressure to win building now that you’re coming into this fight on a hot-streak?
Subconsciously, probably. But the forefront of my mind goes right toward the task at hand, and that’ll be solving the riddle of James Head — as he’ll be right in front of me, challenging me, on July 21.
5. When you were a little boy could you ever have imagined your life turning out like this? Do you feel especially grateful?
I did not imagine I’d be a pro athlete. Wrestlers had no options to do so and at 15 years of age I DESPISED pro-wrestlers – after years of idolizing them. So that wasn’t an option for me. Even beginning in MMA, I knew I was good. But there were so many other wrestlers as good or better than me. Never thought I’d get recognised, though I put faith in my athletic endeavors by moving across the USA and later, the world, in order to pursue opportunities in sport.
Signing my own trading card was a special moment. And yes, I’ve been very aware of my luck. Every day for the last few years, I’ve given thanks for what is. As I’ve aged and become more aware/mature, I reflect often. And find myself ever thankful for the grace and understanding that the world has afforded me.