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Titan FC 37: Pat Healy talks respect for 'hardcore guys' like Robbie Lawler, debates old school vs new school MMA

Interview: "Bam Bam" discusses his upcoming lightweight fight with the WEC veteran Corbbrey this Friday (March 4, 2016), as well as his recent loss to Rick Hawn, retirement and more with

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

You can name any past or present prominent mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion and chances are Pat Healy (32-21-1 NC) probably fought for them.

"Bam Bam" is one of the sport's most entertaining combatants, having accumulated a wealth of experience across brands like World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC), Strikeforce and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

Right now, Healy finds himself competing for Titan FC, where he is the former Lightweight champion. The Oregon native was stripped of his 155-pound belt back in Sept. 2015 because of his failure to make weight for what would've been his second title defense opposite long-time Bellator veteran Rick Hawn.

Healy, 33, lost that encounter and now finds himself facing Elite XC and WEC veteran Muhsin Corbbrey (14-8), who is a late replacement for former featherweight title challenger Desmond Green, on the Titan FC 37 card Friday night (March 4, 2016) live and exclusively on Fight Pass. recently caught up with Healy to chat about the opponent switch, his thoughts on the changing MMA climate, Reebok and more!

You've experienced a lot over the course of your MMA career. Did the opponent change have any effect on your camp?

Healy: Early on in camp, I try not to get too specific for my guy. I like to focus on what I want to do in the fight. When it gets closer to the fight is when I start to gear up more for that specific guy. Luckily I wasn't into that stage too far.

Corbbrey hasn't been too active of late, is this something you think will plague him in Washington?

PH: He's a little bit older and hasn't been very active over the last four years. I don't think that really bodes well for him. I try to stay sharp.

Did you ever consider pulling out of the fight?

PH: Not at all. I love to fight. The more often I can do it the better.

If we could just discuss your last outing against Rick for a moment, did it bring back any memories of past close decisions?

PH: Yeah, I mean, I knew it was going to be close. I felt like I had done enough to win the fight, but it was a tough, grueling fight. The judges didn't see it my way. I think I learned a lot and took a lot from that fight and will make the adjustments.

Some fighters either watch film, or they delegate that duty to a member of their coaching staff. Do you watch any at all?

PH: I do a little bit at that start and then I kind of let me coaches handle it. They're the ones who I want to see what he does so they can help me make the adjustments.

Seeing as how you missed weight and were stripped of your lightweight title against Rick, have you hired a nutritionist, or done anything differently this time around to make the drop smoother?

PH: Cooking is something I love and I always took pride in eating clean. I really didn't know what I was doing as far as nutrition. I thought I'd eat a lot of greens and vegetables and be good to go. After mismanaging my weight last time, I sought out professional help. It's been great so far.

Switching gears, having fought professionally for 15 years, do you look at yourself as a torch bearer? Someone who's climbed the ranks of Strikeforce, UFC and now with Titan?

PH: I do like to think of myself as an old school kind of fighter. I think early on, guys got into fighting because they liked to fight. I always use Chuck Liddell as an example. If he didn't start fighting, I'm pretty sure he'd be on a bar stool somewhere looking for a fight. It's just in him. You see a lot more athletes nowadays, guys who aren't necessarily born fighters, but they're incredible athletes.

Are you happy with the current state of MMA and the emphasis that's being placed on promotion?

PH: There certainly has become more of an entertainment side to it, but it's not really my style. I don't really fault guys for doing that, especially if it's in there personality. I don't think it's the only key to success. You look at guys like Robbie Lawler and hope for the good guys -- the hardcore guys -- that just go about their business.

Is your goal to land in UFC once again and how much would their apparel deal with Reebok influence your decision?

PH: A return there would be what I want, but I'm happy with Titan too. It's a shame what's going on with the sponsorships. It's good guys like Benson Henderson are going to Bellator and creating a little competition.

As we get set to wrap up, has the thought of retirement crept into your mind now that you're 50-plus fights into your career?

PH: I think I have a few more years left in me. My body feels good. I don't feel any less diminished -- I can still tie my shoes and all that. But I mean, I hope to make it to 35, 36. I'll listen to my body and take it as it goes. As long as I'm winning, I'll be fighting.

Lastly, how do you see the fight playing out with Muhsin and where do you go from here?

PH: I learned a lot from my last fight. I think it's going to go great. I'm going to turn in a great performance and I think I'll finish him in the second or third round. [If there's pressure] A little bit. Talking with some people who've trained with him; he's a very dangerous opponent.

For more on Titan FC 37 click here.

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