Looking back on his 2018, lightweight Erick Gonzalez feels the year definitely had its positives and negatives.
After picking up a win in his first fight of the year in April, Gonzalez changed weight classes to take part in Combate Americas’ 145-pound tournament in September and ended up suffering a loss, closing out 2018 splitting his two bouts.
“It definitely had its ups and downs,” Gonzalez told MMAWeekly.com. “I got a knockout in my first fight of the years against Danny (Ramirez); which was a rematch; so that was a pretty good fight for me.
“Coming off of that (Ramirez) fight it was my first time dropping down to 145 pounds. I ended up taking a loss; which was a pretty big loss (against Andres Quintana). Overall it had its ups and downs, and is a learning experience, and regardless of situations that happen and get put in front of us, I’m going to overcome obstacles and stay positive.”
While the opportunity to be part of Combate Americas’ tournament was too big to pass up, Gonzalez doesn’t feel he’ll be changing weight classes from lightweight again anytime soon.
“Dropping down to 145 pounds definitely had a toll on my body,” said Gonzalez. “With the weight cut I wasn’t at the levels where I was at with 155 pounds, where I feel comfortable and happy. It was more a miserable cut than an enjoyable cut.
“I will probably not being to go 145 pounds unless the money is really, really, right. I’m happy at 155 pounds. I’m just going to stay at 155 pounds, and go from there. We’ll take it one step at a time after that.”
Gonzalez (8-3) will look to get back on track this Friday in Guadalajara, Mexico, when he takes on Alejandro Martinez (4-2) in a main card 155-pound bout at Combate Americas 32.
“I’ve seen a lot of footage on him,” Gonzalez said of Martinez. “I’m not too impresses with his striking so much. But he could be working his striking and be having the best boxing camp of his life, so I’m not going to discredit that much. But recapping his fights he hasn’t changed much.
“I’m really working on laying down punches down the pipe and keeping my distance. If I get him on the cage, I’m going to take him down and am going to make him work, because he’s the kind of guy that will gas out in the second round, especially with the pressure I put on a lot of people.”
Back at his more comfortable weight class, Gonzalez is looking to make a push towards a championship in 2019 and establish himself as the top lightweight in Combate Americas.
“I’d love to get my 155-pound title,” said Gonzalez. “There are a couple of people I do have my eye on, without saying names right now. After I renew my contract and renegotiate everything, I would have an interest on one person that they threw at me, but we’ll get into that later in the year.
“But other than that, (the title is) only thing I really have my eye on. I’m really sticking with Combate Americas because they’re really building me, and I think they can take me really far, and I can be a pretty good face for them, at 155-pounds especially.”