Following a loss in his UFC debut against Ricky Simon last August, bantamweight Montel Jackson was looking to rebound when he faced Brian Kelleher at UFC 232 in December.
In just over a minute and a half, Jackson was able to secure a choke on Kelleher and pick up his first UFC win via submission with his fourth first round finish in six victories.
“I ended up picking up the victory, but it was bittersweet in the end,” Jackson told MMAWeekly.com. “It just built the fire; getting back in there and practicing.
“It was very important (to not lose a second UFC fight in a row). Wins, that right there validates your preparation and validates your hard work and validates the rout you are taking. Wins are everything.”
Jackson feels like it’s his attention to the details of what he does in a fight that allows him to fix any problems he encounters and come back a better fighter the next time around.
“You can look at the fights and everything and what happened, and you put yourself under the microscope,” said Jackson. “Obviously you can figure out the stuff you did wrong – right away – it’s all about those small details; you try to work the kinks out of that.”
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On Saturday in Atlanta, Ga., Jackson (7-1) will look to pick up his second win in a row when he faces Andre Soukhamthath (13-6) in a preliminary 135-pound bout at UFC 236.
“I’ve got a real competitive attitude,” Jackson said. “I’m always trying to win. Fight, no fight; MMA, no MMA; I’m always trying to win.
“It’s just like usual (game plan): prepare, listen to my coaches, and go out there and do my thing.”
Not one to look beyond what is in front of him, Jackson is focused on April 13 and taking care of business against Soukhamthath.
“I don’t really have goals or anything,” said Jackson. “I just want to go out there and do my best.”