Ahead of his Bellator 239 match-up with former UFC standout Myles Jury, we caught up with Bellator lightweight mainstay Brandon Girtz. Girtz (16-8) will be making his first appearance inside the Bellator cage since last March, when he went toe-to-toe against fellow promotional veteran Saad Awad.
We started off our conversation by discussing the horrific helicopter crash involving Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gigi, and seven others. Girtz expressed his sympathy towards everyone involved and his respect for the former NBA superstar. “He’s a big icon, a big sports icon, so a lot of us in the sports world look up to him. It’s a tragedy, man.”
Girtz also discussed his recovery process after he tore his bicep last year before his fight with Jon Tuck. “This camp’s been a little different. We’re going to make it to this fight 100%,” Girtz said. He’s feeling healthy and ready to go, he added, and although his sights are set on Myles Jury currently, he would still like to fight Paul Redmond at some point down the line. Remond was his original opponent before Tuck stepped in.
“Redmond I would fight, because I’d like to go to Ireland,” he said. Girtz doesn’t have too much of a reason beyond that, besides the fact that “we were scheduled to fight each other for over a month or two. That was kind of a person I was preparing for.”
Regardless of opponent, Girtz wants to compete more often, he added. “The last couple years, it’s been once a year. That’s not what I want to do. I want to fight more than that. This year, I’m looking to get three to four. One time a year does not cover my itch.”
Girtz also chatted about the landscape of the Bellator lightweight division and where he stacks up. Michael Chandler and Benson Henderson, believes Girtz, still have some unfinished business to tend to. “I see them two fighting soon.” But hopes after he beats Jury that he will get another crack at Chandler in 2020.
Girtz discussed how long he envisions himself fighting for. As of now the 34 year old feels healthy and his skill set is constantly evolving, so he has no intentions of retiring anytime soon.
Most importantly, Brandon Girtz is excited to fight Jury in the co-main event on February 21. “I think it’s a match-up of two different styles. I like to call him a point fighter. He’s trying to score, I’m out there fighting.” Brandon feels very confident about this match-up adding that “I’m gonna look to put it on him, I’m gonna look to put him on his head. I absolutely think I’m gonna finish him.”
Taking every bout as a “one-round fight,” Girtz takes the mindset heading in that his opponent is trying to get to his family through him. As a result, “I’m not out there trying to point with him. I’m not playing pitter patter. I’m going out there for the kill.”
Finally, Girtz gave his prediction for this Sunday’s Super Bowl match-up. Brandon will be watching the game at Justin Gaethje’s house and believes Patrick Mahomes will be the difference, and sees the Chiefs getting the win. We’ll know soon.
Bellator 239 takes place February 21, 2020 at the WinStar World Casino and Resort in Thackerville, Oklahoma.