- UFC 153
Dangerous Manuwa targets time with Phil Davis & Co
Lethal Brit Jimi Manuwa is serious about making a huge impact on the UFC light-heavyweight division, and he plans to enlist the extended help of Team Alliance to ensure he becomes a force in the 205lb weight class.
Manuwa made a splash on UFC debut with the two-round destruction of Kyle Kingsbury, who had to be pulled by the doctor. Victory extended the unbeaten record of Manuwa, whose MMA record is now 12-0.
Based with Lions Pride, Manuwa has made sporadic trips abroad to Thailand, Brazil and the US in order to improve his game. Working with Team Alliance in the States, Manuwa has worked with the likes of Phil Davis - who fights Wagner Prado at UFC 153 this weekend - to improve his wrestling, and he plans to do more of the same in the future.
"I work a lot on wrestling. I've got a great team at Lions Pride, and before one of my recent fights I went to Team Alliance to spar with those guys down there," Manuwa told ESPN.
"Dominic Cruz, [Alex] Gustafsson, Phil Davis, Brandon Vera, Joey Beltran, most are light-heavyweights so it's a great place for me to work. I learned a lot.
"Working with somebody like Phil Davis can only help my game in certain areas so I hope to do more of that in the future.
"I didn't have a chance before my latest fight, but I think I'll head out there again. I also have a great Thai coach in Thailand, and also go out and work in Brazil."
Reflecting on his win over Kingsbury, which saw the American take some frightful punishment, Manuwa confessed he was disappointed not to force a stoppage before the doctor stepped in. He also spoke of the awkward meeting between he and Kingsbury when they stepped onto the same train carriage later in the weekend.
"I felt bad [on the train], he was pretty damaged, I didn't really want to ask him how he was or anything. He's a really nice person, I've heard some of his interviews and he's a good guy.
"I just remember hitting him and he was still there! I wanted to hit him with a clean power punch, I caught him with a couple of knees and kicks, a few punches but not one of my good ones.
"I went back into the locker room and said to my coaches that I didn't really like the fight. Mind you, at the end of the day, his face tells the story."
Follow Jimi on Twitter @posterboyJM