John Redmond – “This is my time to show everyone what I can do”

Eyeing his first outing as a Team Ryano fighter this Friday in Jordan against England’s Craig White, veteran of the Irish MMA scene John Redmond spoke to PETER CARROLL about his weight cut, switching camps, his preparation, fighting in Jordan and what a win would mean to him.

John Redmond first emerged on the Irish scene as a middleweight and it wasn’t long before he became a challenger to Chris Fields’ national title. Appearing strong and lean at 185lbs, it was a surprise to many when the Malahide man revealed he was planning a move down to welterweight.

Now, having competed three times in his new bracket, ‘Johnny Jitzu’ believes he has mastered the cut to 170lbs and is not foreseeing any difficulties at the weigh-in on Thursday.

“I’m feeling great, I’ve got lots of energy. I was around 180lbs this morning and I’ve done a bit more cutting since then. I’m doing it right this time, there shouldn’t be any problems at the weigh in,” said Redmond

A monumental change to the Dubliner’s career came when he switched from close friend Paul Cowzer’s Rush Fight Academy to Baldoyle stronghold, Team Ryano. With this camp being his first with his new team, Redmond commented on the impact the change has made to his style.

“I made the move because I felt I needed to improve in a few specific areas and I feel more complete than ever,” he said. “Training with brown belts everyday on the mat has brought my jiu jitsu on a lot, my transitions are a lot smoother and quicker, I’m very happy with my movement on the floor.”

Questioned as to whether the audience can expect to see any of his new coach Andy Ryan’s judo techniques in the cage this Friday, Redmond didn’t rule anything out.

“If the opportunity presents itself, why not”, he laughed.

Redmond scored one of the biggest victories of his career on New Year’s Eve against rival Kieran Davern. After an intense war of words in the lead up to the bout, the Fingal man kept distance between himself and the SBG fighter with leg kicks before dropping him with a straight right hand.

Effortlessly passing his guard, Redmond finished the fight with a guillotine choke in what would be his last outing for Rush Fight Academy. In hindsight, Redmond is adamant that his performance against his rival was just a sign of things to come.

“I was really confident on the way into that fight. I worked really hard, nobody works harder than me, what you saw that night was the fruits of my labour. I started competing a long time before I should’ve and it’s only now that people are going to see what I can really do.

“I’ve been fighting the cream of the crop since day one and that’s given me some of the best experience anyone could ever have. I feel like a complete fighter now, and hopefully I’ll be able to put on more shows like my last time out,” said the former middleweight contender.

With his opponent, Craig White, only being confirmed last weekend, Redmond has not busied himself trying to learn much about his counterpart’s style. He also claimed that he would be in no rush to put an end to the contest.

“I’m focusing on my own game, why should I worry about my opponent’s game? It took a while to be matched but I found out around the time of Cage Warriors’ recent Wales card.

“I’m ready to go five rounds if needs be, never mind three. If I can finish it, brilliant, but I’m just going to force my game on this fella from the first bell. If it happens, it happens,” he relayed calmly.

The north county Dublin man also spoke of what an honour it is to be brought overseas by Cage Warriors. Particularly, carrying the Irish flag abroad seemed to appeal to the welterweight.

“It’s terrible nice to be asked to fight in Jordan. It’s a special thing for me I have to say, I’ll get to represent Ireland in a different country in front of an international audience. I have my tricolour packed and ready to go. I’m grateful for Cage Warriors offering me the fight, I’m going to put on a show for everyone so the next time they’re heading off I’ll be in their plans,”

There is no doubt that aspiring fighters could learn a lot from Redmond. Despite some bumps in the road he has been unwavering in his pursuit of success, his self promotion and social media presence have won him a host of fans and he has been vocal in the past about fighter welfare. Not one to rest on his laurels, the new Team Ryano man is readying himself to launch an attack on the Cage Warriors welterweight division.

“I just want to take one fight at a time, get my record level with wins and losses and then push on from there. I know I have the ability, this is my time to show everyone what I can do in there. I know this is what I’m supposed to do with my life and I’ll be looking to get straight back in there once this fight is done with.”


Photo: CageWarriors

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