Following a stellar amateur career, featherweight up and comer Hunter Azure made a successful jump to the pro MMA ranks in in August, 2018, and hasn’t looked back.
Since turning pro, Azure has won all four of his bouts, picking up finishes in three of those victories. Still, Azure isn’t fully satisfied with what he’s been able to accomplish over the last year and a half.
“I’m hard on myself,” Azure told MMAWeekly.com. “I like to win. I take those, and those are good, and are learning experiences, but I want to get finishes. I didn’t get to do that in my last fight. I was a little more hesitant. Being on a higher stage I knew I had to be smarter and not as wild and get caught in things.”
Azure attributes being able to make the transition from the amateur ranks to the pros with more ease to his decision to making the move out to the MMA Lab for his training.
“I’ve known of the gym and heard of it, and came out for a visit and spent a week here,” said Azure. “It just took me that one week out here. I got beat up that whole week and I loved it, so I moved out here a few weeks later.
“I’m so much more relaxed. I was a wild fighter and tried to use wrestling a lot and grinding. It got me through the amateurs, but once you get to the higher level guys you can’t do that – they weather your storm. I had to sit back, relax a little bit more, and see the positions and grow; grow all around.”
On Friday in Phoenix, Arizona, Azure (5-0) looks to remain undefeated when he faces Jaime Hernandez (4-2) in a main card 135-poud bout at LFA 59.
“I had three weeks from the fight date to think about it (the fight),” Azure said. “I kind of like the short notice. To get this win I just have to go out there and be me. I have to get a little more aggressive and get that killer instinct. I feel this fight is going to go good.”
While Azure would like to get an opportunity to step up to the next level of the sport sooner than later, he knows he has to have patience as to not move too quickly and not be ready for his opportunity when it arrives.
“Everyone’s kind of in a rush to get to it, but I’ve learned I’ve got to go with the process,” said Azure. “Yeah I want to get there by the end of this year and be at the top level, but there’s little things I need to fix, and that takes time.
“I love the sport and don’t want to get to the big stage too early. I want to be in there and stay in there.”
LFA airs on AXS TV Fridays at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT.