With a professional record of 11-0-0 (6 KOs and 5 submissions), Max “Power” Nunes continues to climb up MMA’s light-heavyweight rankings (currently ranked 2nd in the U.K.), and he’s set to test his skills against the internationally-tested Jason “The Villain” Jones for the BAMMA world light-heavyweight title.
The two will headline the BAMMA 13 fight card set for Sept. 14, at the Birmingham Indoor National Arena in Birmingham, England. The event will be broadcast live and free on AXS-TV (US viewers) and several other outlets around the globe.
With every impressive win inside the cage (9 of 11 victories via first round stoppages), the pressure on Nunes continues to rise, but the 24-year-old takes it all in stride.
“Before when you’re like 2-0, no one cares. It does put more and more pressure with every win to remain undefeated,” Nunes told me during a recent conversation. “I just try to forget about that, and go out there and do my best. Whatever happens happens. No point in putting more pressure on myself.”
When Nunes steps inside the cage at BAMMA 13, he’ll be opposite a man who started his MMA career nine years ago when the undefeated Swede was still a 14 year-old chasing his dreams of becoming a professional basketball player.
Jones (19-10-0, 8 KOs) has competed in several MMA promotions around the world, and he’s faced a couple of recognizable opponents like Murilo Rua and Riki Fukuda along the way. The Dutchman is equally capable of finishing fights standing up and on the ground, so he’s competent enough make Nunes pay for any mistakes he makes inside the cage.
“He’s been around a long-time. I think he made his pro debut in MMA 2004,” Nunes added. “I have a lot of respect for him as a fighter. It’s going to be fun to fight someone who’s been around since pretty much the beginning of MMA in a way. I’m looking forward to fighting someone who’s that experienced. I think that’s someone I need to fight.”
Even though his well-rounded skills and superb finishing ability makes Max the favorite — at least in my opinion — heading into his BAMMA 13 tilt against Jones, Nunes isn’t taking James lightly.
“I’m never confident when I’m going into a fight,” he said. “I just know that as long as I do my best, I’m happy with myself.”
With a win against Jones at BAMMA 13, Nunes will take another step towards accomplishing every budding MMA star’s ultimate goal: fighting in the UFC.
While Nunes, who just completed training camp with fellow Swedish MMA fighter Alexander Gustafsson at Alliance MMA, admits he’ll likely never have the elite wrestling skills that many at the very top of MMA’s food chain possess, he’s certain he’ll be able to compete with the very best when the time comes.
“I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to deal with such a wrestler because they started at such a young age,” Nunes responded when asked if he was ready for elite wrestlers like Ryan Bader and Rashad Evans. “But it doesn’t matter. I’m confident I can beat anyone as long as I just get the training and preparations done for the fight. I can beat anyone, whether they’re a good wrestler or not. If you prepare hard for a fight, victory is inevitable.”