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Mike Perry took an unorthodoxed approach with his corner for UFC on ESPN 12.
“Platinum” elected to leave behind his trainers and coaches that typically occupy his corner against his co-main event bout against Mickey Gall at Saturday’s UFC on ESPN 12 event in Las Vegas. Instead, Perry (14-6 MMA, 7-6 UFC) brought his girlfriend Latory Gonzalez, and no one else, to corner him.
Perry made his decision public prior to the fight, and was met with heavy criticism and skepticism surrounding his decision making skills. However, come fight night, Perry silenced critics with a unanimous decision victory over Gall.
This victory snapped Perry's two fight skid, and feels his corner held up well.
“She did a great job, she kept it very simple,” Perry told reporters during the post-fight press conference at the UFC Apex. “She shouted a couple of things during the fight and I remember telling myself, ‘OK, there you go, she’s getting into it now.’ And she was like, ‘Keep your hands up!’ There was that one time he swung and had just missed and she was like, ‘Get your hand back up,’ and I was like, ‘All right.’
“In the corner, when she was rubbing the ice on me she kept asking me, ‘Hey, is this OK? What else do you want? What else can I do?’ And she was trying to do more for me and it was really cool just sitting there quiet and just thinking about how the next round was going to go.”
While Perry is happy about the outcome and way the fight went, he does feel guilty for his girlfriend. He understands he put her in a tough position with critics and fans.
“This is all kind of new to her,” Perry said. “Everybody loves her, but all these people hating because of me. It makes me feel kind of bad sometimes that I brought her into that, but that’s what happens when you get attention and people just start hating on it. They hating on our dreams and our goals, so I really try more to coach her. She thought people were one way and she’s starting to see people are totally a different way. She was like y’all innocent until proven guilty and to me y’all guilty until proven innocent.”
Perry hasn't been happy with corner coaches thus far. He thinks coaches take too much credit and distract from the fight itself. Moving forward, Perry wants his corner led by a lone coach that keeps his best interests in mind.
“Somebody that I can build with a friendship type thing,” Perry said. “Obviously, look I don’t want anybody else in my life. I just want me and my girl but obviously, I know I’m going to need some help. And, who knows, if I go train with Yoel Romero, I’d be down for him to get a slot in the corner if he wants.
“I mean, who wouldn’t want to corner? I want to corner and get that front row seat too, that’s why I’m trying to build Platinum Martial Arts. That’s what I did tonight. I built Platinum Martial Arts. I showed the world I understand how to win and I didn’t need anybody to help me do it. I just needed my girl to bring me a bottle of water and rub that ice on my neck, God, it was so good. And yeah, it’ll be nice to build something.”
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