On the eve of this year’s Big Game, Bantamweight MMA fighter Claudio Ledesma will be going to battle against Pedro Gonzalez at Cage Fury Fighting Championships 13 in Atlantic City.
Ledesma is coming into this fight following an impressive performance in his Bellator debut, winning a unanimous decision over Brian Kelleher in October.
Although originally scheduled to fight Tateki Matsuda, Ledesma got the call a few weeks ago that his opponent was replaced with Gonzalez.
“My approach to training for this fight changes slightly because Gonzalez is very tall, and has some reach on me, so we had to change it up a little,” said Ledesma. “Some of the aspects of his game are a little different, but the whole time our plan was for me to impose my will and for me to do my thing out there in the cage. I really don’t like to cater to another guy’s fighting style. I like to do my thing and make him adjust to me.”
Through his young career Ledesma has established himself as a formidable opponent within the bantamweight division, and despite the success he has earned, Ledesma remains grounded and focused on getting better as a fighter.
“I really think I have a lot left; I don’t think I’m done,” said Ledesma. “A lot of people tell me I’m not confident enough, but in the grand scheme of things, I don’t think I’m anybody in the fight game. And I still have a lot to prove and a lot of getting better to do.”
Within two years Ledesma went from fighting on small cards to making his way to Bellator and other top venues, including Ring of Combat and CFFC. Rather than letting the success go to his head and become complacent with his training, the humble fighter continues to work hard and make the most out of the opportunities presented to him.
“It’s crazy; when I first started my goal was to have an amateur fight. And I did pretty well as an amateur, so then my goal was to get one pro fight. Then a couple of my teammates fought in bigger promotions, so I set my goal to get there. And now I’m here doing it. It might sound crazy but I want to put together a three fight win streak and work my way toward fighting in the UFC by this time next year. I know it sounds crazy but that’s my goal.”
Ledesma has shown throughout his MMA career that when he sets a goal for himself, there are no obstacles or barricades which will prevent him from achieving it.
A big reason Ledesma has continued to grow and expand his way up through the different fight promotions is his ability to learn from past fights and improve his overall fight game.
“I think my striking has taken a big leap from when I first started. Early on the scouting report was to defend my takedowns and you’d be ok. But now I have added another aspect to my fight game, especially after Bellator, where I out struck my opponent, sticking him with the jab. And I have been working a lot on my wrestling, which I want to exhibit in this fight. I feel like I am growing as a fighter. After every fight we watch the video—not the good stuff but the bad—so we can see what we need to work on. Every fight my goal is to be a different fighter than the previous fight. Lastly I’d like to thank all of my training partners, and anyone who has taken five minutes out of their day to help me out. Also to my job for being real supportive of my fight career, and of course my wife and kids; they are my everything.”
Claudio Ledesma goes to battle with Pedro Gonzalez February 4, 2012 at the Cage Fury Fighting Championships 13 in Atlantic City. For more information visit http://cffc.tv/