Anthony Romero never wanted to lose, but now that he has, he says the pressure is off him.
Niagara, Ont.’s Romero (9-1) is set to return to the cage at Fury FC 54 on Sunday in Houston, Texas. He’ll take on Nico Echeverry (11-4) and the Canadian enters the fight coming off his first career loss, which he says took all the pressure off him.
“It motivates me because there is nothing to worry about. When you are undefeated, you have that pressure about performing and being that person everyone wants you to be and to remain undefeated,” Romero said to MMA Empire.
“That pressure is gone, I dealt with the loss, and now I’m just focused on fighting, and not worried about keeping my undefeated record intact. I can also take more risks as I don’t have to worry about being the perfect athlete.”
In his last fight, he dropped a split decision to JJ Okanovich in a fight many thought he won.
After the result was read, Romero immediately wanted to get back in there, and that will be the case as he’ll take on Echeverry, who is someone he has been linked to a couple of times now.
“There have been talks about fighting Nico for a while,” Romero explained.
“We are under the same management, so it made it easy to make the fight. I’m just focused on what I need to do as he is talented everywhere and is dangerous everywhere. He’s a good opponent for me.”
In the fight, Romero expects his opponent to grapple him. Yet, he’s confident he will be able to keep it standing and eventually find the stoppage win.
“I see a finish. Like always, I’m not looking to rush anything. In my last fight, I got too excited and eager for the finish,” Romero said.
“I’m ready for anything he wants to do, I’m prepared for striking and grappling. But, I do think he will try and grapple with me.”
Should Romero get the win, and be it by stoppage, he knows it would be big for his career.
However, he says he isn’t focused on trying to get signed by the UFC as instead he just wants to fight and stack up wins as he knows the call to the UFC will eventually come.
“It puts me right back in there. I’m only 24 and I know I’m on the radar of the UFC and the big promotions. I’m not having to deal with a long layoff like last time. I’m ready to go,” Romero concluded.