Featherweight prospect Stafford Swainston will be making his pro-MMA debut in 2022.
Speaking with John Hyon Ko of The AllStar, Stafford talks about:
- Amateur career
- Developing his MMA game under the tutelage of Eric Uresk
- Learning to box for MMA with Tiger Muay Thai head boxing coach coach John Hutchinson
- Going pro in 2022
On His MMA Development with MMA Coach Eric Uresk (2:24)
“I was with Eric pretty much the whole year. So first off in Thailand for six months at [Phuket] Top Team and then I went onto Alliance [MMA] in San Diego and I was with Eric there. My fighting as a whole just improved dramatically. The way I kinda saw that was when I went back home and started sparring with the people that used to beat me up pretty much. I was handling them and dominating them. At the time I didn’t feel like I was improving loads but when I went back home I realized how much I leaped up in competition and I was there to compete with the best in the country there. That whole year I changed my game which I came from Muay Thai originally and just worked on my wrestling. Mainly my footwork just to be more adaptive for MMA. Cause my style wasn’t really an MMA style it was more all the separate disciplines together so I was training them all separately not MMA as a whole. So working with Eric he put it all together for me.”
Working Boxing with Petr Yan’s coach John Hutchinson at Tiger Muay Thai (8:18)
“I worked with strict boxing coaches back in the UK. It’s very flatfooted. John Boy knows…worked with a lot of MMA guys so he knows how to put that boxing for MMA. A lot of movement, a lot of footwork drills, a lot of just tidying my hands up. Just being more efficient with my balance, my hands, and my footwork. Just so I can be more efficient when I go into the cage with my strikes.
“Being here I changed my stance a little bit. If you’re a good fighter, a good person to get coached you’re willing to change what you’re doing to be a bit better. Whereas if you are strict to what you’re doing and you think everything else is wrong, you’re going to stay what you’re doing the rest of your career but then you’re not going to improve. I’m quite open to the fact that if I’m doing something wrong, if someone tells me I’m going to change that and I’m going to drill that in my own time. So I’m quite open when thing get asked for me to change.”
Turning pro in 2022 (10:21)
“I want to do the world championships, the amateur world champs, all the Europeans. Depends with all the COVID situation and what’s happening. But if I can’t do that I will be going pro sometime next year. If I do worlds it will probably be at the end of next year. If I don’t, I’d probably be going pro near the start or mid-2022. Once I get back [to the UK] probably one more amateur fight just because I been away for a few months. My last fight was September so I get one more amateur fight or maybe two and go pro after that.”