Akira Corassani was part of the final season of The Ultimate Fighter that aired on SpikeTV. After suffering an injury he was unable to fight at the season’s finale. Finally healed, he fought Andy Ogle in his first official UFC fight at UFC on Fuel TV 5 and won via split decision. MMARecap caught up with Corassani to talk about the fight, the preparation for the fight and his division.
How’s things going today?
It’s all good. It’s getting cold here on the East Coast. The weather is changing.
You fought Andy Ogle and won a split decision back at UFC on Fuel TV 5. How’s it feel to get your first official UFC victory?
It feels amazing. Any other fighter can agree with that. It’s a big weight coming off your shoulders. I think it was a bigger deal for me because I have been away for 19 months. Not only did I have to battle with all kinds of demons to the cage. For me this fight was about coming back. I had two choices, stand on the sideline and sit on the bench or pursue this journey of mine. I came back and I won.
The fight was close. Many members of the media were split on who won rounds one and two. Did you feel like you were winning the fight inside the cage?
It’s so hard when you are in the fight. Unless you knock him out or submit him. It’s so hard to know when you are fighting if you are up or you are down. You are in the moment trying to win every moment. You try to win every exchange of punches, takedowns, every situation. If you are going to be judging yourself as you are going you will be one or two steps behind. The guy across is concerned only with fighting. If you take the guy down and control him you know. Since it was a back and forth fight, I had no clue. I was kind of a little annoyed as I wanted to let go more. That’s probably what affected me from being away from the cage. The second nature type of things that you drill didn’t really come out. I wanted to knock him out in the first round.
Have you gotten a chance to go back and watch the fight? What are your thoughts on it now?
Oh yeah I always watch my fights like twenty times. I will watch my head only and then the next time my feet or my shoulders. It is very necessary to watch your fights. But not to put too much meaning into it. This fight was about coming back.
What was the biggest positive that you were able to take away from the fight?
That I was back. I walked through the gates. I walked out in front of 8,000 people that all wanted to see me lose. The weight cut process, everything was positive. Those things that you normally don’t care about, I was enjoying everything. Winning is everything. I was cut and dripping blood, everything was perfect. I got fifteen minutes in the octagon.
Are you going to try and get another fight in this year or wait till early next year?
We come back and see what is open. I have to talk to my manager and whatever comes comes. I am open to a lot of stuff. We shall see what will happen. Right now it is recovering.
Anyone in particular that you are wanting to fight next?
I love everybody’s style. You see the featherweight division and they all come to fight. You see other weight classes and some don’t. But featherweight division you match anyone up and it could be a fight of the night.
Any sponsors or people you want to thank?
Renzo Gracie and everyone at Renzo Gracie academy, Ricardo Almedia’s team, my boxing coach Mark Henry, Roger Mamedov at Williamsburg MMA, Fear the Fighter, DFX Sports, Jaco, TRX, all the logos on my shorts.
Where can the fans find you at?
@AkiraCorassani and on Facebook