Mickey Gall feels his loss to Diego Sanchez came on his worst day, and he doesn’t expect to have that again, he said ahead of UFC Newark.
Newark, NJ — At UFC Newark on Saturday, Mickey Gall (5-2) will enter the octagon in his home state of New Jersey for the first time. Gall, who exploded onto the scene as Dana White’s pick for an opponent for CM Punk a few years back, has done well thus far in his UFC tenure. He’s 4-2 in the promotion, and at 27, just hitting his prime.
This weekend, he gets Salim Touahri, a lesser known name than his last opponent, Diego Sanchez. The Sanchez fight, mind you, didn’t go Gall’s way — but he learned a lot from it, he told Cageside Press at Wednesday’s open workouts.
“You learn every time you’re in there,” said Gall, noting that he was “sick leading up to [UFC 235, against Sanchez], couldn’t perform.” What he took away from it was “just seeing more. Every time I get in that cage I feel like I see more, I get more comfortable.”
“Any time it goes bad, you learn a lot from it, because you never forget it. You’re embarrassed, you’re not happy. I’d say from that, being in there on my worst night — I probably should have been laid up in a hospital bed, but I went in there and fought — it makes me very fearless.” Besides, said Gall, “It can’t go worse than that. It’s not going to be my worst night. I’m not going to be sick like that again. It gives me a lot of confidence. Feeling good, feeling healthy, going in there, I feel pretty fearless.”
Saying he’d probably take the fight anyway if he had to do it all over again, Gall later added that “I wouldn’t say I regret it. I learned, I learned from it.”
As for opponent Touahri, “Salim’s a tough kid, Polish kid, they call him Grizzly, so I bet he’s going to be strong. I watched him, I think he’s tough, everyone in the UFC is. But I think I’m going to take him out and finish him. I know what I do, I’ve been working hard, running hard, training hard, and I’m ready to go.”
Like Clay Guida, Mickey Gall brought a fan up on stage at the open workouts. One years away from being old enough to really fight. Asked about that moment, Gall explained that “I was the first kids instructor at Miller’s MMA. Jim and Dan Miller’s school.”
“I don’t teach as much anymore. But it’s fun. I want to get the kid excited,” he said. “It’s cool.”
Speaking of Jim Miller, Gall’s mentor, the two will share a card for the first time at UFC Newark. “We’ve been in the back together a lot. Either I’m fighting or he’s fighting. But first time. First time sharing the octagon.”
“Obviously Jersey’s got Frankie Edgar, but Jim and Dan Miller, those are like big brothers, guys I’ve looked up to my entire life” Gall said. And Jim, he added, is “a leader, and a great guy.”
For more from Mickey Gall, watch the full press scrum from the open workouts above! UFC Newark takes place Saturday, August 3 at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.