Booking a fight hasn’t been easy up north amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, but Megan Owen is looking to prove that hard work and a positive attitude tend to lead you in the right direction.
Windsor, Ont.’s Owen (1-0) will make her way to the cage for the second time as a professional when she faces off with Brazil’s Jaqueline Amorim (3-0) in women’s strawweight action at LFA 110 in Shawnee, Okla. on Friday night.
“Back home we’ve been in lockdown for about a year now, so just training has been difficult let alone getting the opportunity for fights. I just stayed optimistic that something great was going to come if I continued to work hard,” Owen said in an interview with MMA Empire.
“That’s the mindset that I’ve stayed with and now I’ve got this opportunity with LFA and I’m so fortunate. What an amazing night it’s going to be. It’s almost like dreams coming to reality to perform and showcase my skills on a high-level platform like this. It’s kind of surreal, I’m super excited.”
Of course, there will always be some nerves heading into a fight, but with the training camp she’s had, Owen, 34, said she feels more confident heading into her second professional fight, especially with the team she currently has around her and the environment she’s in.
“Camp has been incredible, I’ve had the opportunity to just stay in Miami and finish up at MMA Masters,” Owen said.
“I’ve been able to focus on training for the last three weeks, staying in the dorms, living the whole fighter lifestyle and I couldn’t be more blessed and I’m really appreciative to experience this right now.”
Florida is a hot spot when it comes to elite MMA gyms and MMA Masters is one of those facilities.
Training with the high-level athletes at MMA Masters has been huge for the career of Owen, and she said she seems to notice improvement on a daily basis.
“We’ve definitely worked more with my striking and wrestling, and even my jiu-jitsu is a lot stronger,” Owen said.
“When it comes to the mental aspect, I think for anyone it’s really just believing in yourself and having confidence in what you’re capable of. Physically, I feel really good heading into this one.”
Standing across the cage from Owen on fight night will be highly-decorated Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Amorim.
With all three of Amorim’s finishes coming by submission in the first round, Owen isn’t expecting her to be an easy out.
“I haven’t seen too much footage of Jaqueline in MMA, but I know that she is a very decorated and high-level BJJ practitioner,” Owen said.
“I’m anticipating a really challenging fight, but it’s one I’m grateful to have. It’s an awesome opportunity.”
With Owen being more than aware of Amorim’s jiu-jitsu credentials, the Ontario native said she’ll look for openings on the feet where she feels Amorim will be less comfortable.
“When you’re preparing for an opponent you’re always trying to work on defending what you’ve seen them attack off of before and then maybe just trying to ramp up your game in a skillset you might feel they’re least comfortable in,” Owen said.
“I would say that would maybe be more striking right now, but obviously with MMA everything goes, so we’ll just have to see how it plays out. In general, we expect her to want to get things to the ground, just because that’s what we’ve seen. But I’m confident everywhere in the cage and I’ll be ready for anything.”
For Owen, opening up LFA 110 will be the biggest opportunity so far of her young career and she’ll be looking to use it as a stepping stone into the next stage of her development as a professional.
“Once you start competing you always want to get to the next level,” Owen said.
“For myself, my main goal is to make my way to the UFC or just be the best athlete I absolutely can be, and this is where it all starts.”