Fury Fighting Championship will host Fury FC 40 December 13th in Humble, Texas. The card promises a solid night of fights (including 2 title bouts) and will be headlined by Light Heavyweight Champion “Hurricane” Ike Villanueva (15-9 12 KO) and challenger Rashad “Daywalker” Coulter (9-4 8 KO). Global Fight Talk had the opportunity to speak with both fighters to gain some insight on their mindsets ahead of their championship bout.
As Coulter (37-years-old) looks to ride the momentum from his UFC victory over Yaozong Hu (3-2 2 KO) in his last bout, he spoke about his goals and what it will take to achieve them. “My goal is to make it back to the UFC.” He said. “I’m not going to go out there and push for a finish [but] my goal is to take care of business and make it as impressive as possible and keep taking people out viciously.” Being a knockout artist of Coulter’s caliber allows him to finish fights without abandoning the game plan or leaving himself over exposed. With a spectacular 90% knockout rate, “Daywalker” is dangerous in virtually any situation of any fight. “I attribute my knockouts to my upbringing and the type of person I am.” He explained. “This is not a nice business. People pay to see brutality and that’s what I like to see. I fight how I want to see other fighters fight.” The upbringing that he cited as a major factor in obtaining his impressive knockout rate includes his unusual route to becoming a professional fighter. “I didn’t come from a martial arts background. I didn’t box, I didn’t wrestle, and I didn’t do Ju-Jitsu.” He said. “What motivates me is knowing that I’m just now hitting my stride.” He began his training at Saekson Janjira in Plano, Texas, where he learned the basics of Muay Thai at 29 years old. Since then, he has trained at Dallas, Texas’ Fortis MMA where they have recently focused on improving Coulter’s mental composure in the cage. “What I’ve been working on is settling down. Picking my shots instead of trying to ‘get a hit back’ when I get hit.” He also explained that he is looking forward to putting on a great fight December 13th. “I think I’m going to see the best Ike that anybody has ever seen. I want it to be what everybody’s paying to see with two knockout artists, but I think once I touch him, he’s going to turn into a wrestler.”
Villanueva (35-years-old) certainly has other plans for this bout. The fellow veteran is on the best stretch of his career, winning four of his last five bouts, earning three straight knockouts. “I’m 8-2 since I came back in 2016.” He said. “My main goal is to get in the UFC. I just have to take care of business.” “Hurricane” shares a personal obligation with Coulter to put on a show for the fans. “I’m looking to entertain the crowd. That’s my style, you want to bang, you want to go to the ground, whichever way it goes, I’m trying to finish the fight. I tell my opponents to meet me in the middle of the cage.” He explained. The veteran described himself as a “Blue collar” type of guy. Working a full- time job and training full time at 4oz Fight Club in Houston, Texas, Villanueva always has a full plate and cites his family as his source of motivation. “I fight for my family.” He said. “They look up to me so I’m doing something to show them how to be great and that if you keep working hard, your dreams will pay off. I can’t let them down.” Recently, “Hurricane” explained that he and his camp have put emphasis on the transition from Heavyweight to Light Heavyweight and the difference in speed. “The strength training has been more like speed training.” He said. “These young guys coming up are hungry so us older guys have to step our game up and match their speed and intensity.” When speaking about the fight, Villanueva voiced a level of respect for Coulter as a fighter as well as confidence in himself. “He’s an aggressive stand-up guy. He’s a great guy, and a great boxer. Other than that, he’s just another guy in my way.” He said, and added, “He’s somewhere up there with me, I’ll give him that [but] I’m not sure he’s on my level.”
Any fight fan should be excited for this clash of two veteran knockout artists. Each fighter expressed mutual respect, a hunger to fight in the UFC, and the desire to produce a fan- friendly fight. Additionally, the card will feature Lightweight Champion Le’Ville Simpson (9-4 3 KO) and challenger Will Morris (4-1 2 KO). Global Fight Talk looks forward to providing full coverage of this exciting night of fights.
By Sav Maddox