LFA standout Jake Childers is looking for big fights but isn’t focusing on a UFC call-up.
This past Friday at LFA 82, Alex Polizzi captured the vacant light heavyweight title when he submitted Jamal Pogues in the fourth round. While Polizzi might have gone home with some new hardware, it was another fighter that stole the night. In the co-main event of the evening, Jake Childers sent the fans that were in attendance at the Mystic Lake Casino in Prior Lake, Minnesota into a frenzy when he slammed Nate Richardson, who went unconscious on impact, to the canvas. The highlight-reel knockout was a huge hit with the fans and video of it spread fast throughout social media.
While the win was the biggest of Childers’ career, it wasn’t without some controversy. When the Illinois native lifted Richardson in the air and sent him crashing to the canvas, the former Glory Kickboxer tried to brace his fall by planting his elbow into the ground. The move kept Richardson’s upper body from crashing into the canvas and forced his head to be crushed between Richardson’s own shoulder and Childers’ head.
“After watching over and over, I agree with Pat [Miletich],” Childers told Cageside Press. “Somehow he landed on his arm in a weird way and just jolted in a crazy way. I kinda said something stupid in the interview which my coaches said I shouldn’t have done. My coaches said I should never have said I headbutted someone even if it was on accident. It was an accident. I was like why shouldn’t I say that. After that fight, the referee told me that they [the Minnesota State Boxing Commission] was already reviewing it and they were thinking about taking it away from me.”
A headbutt is an illegal move in MMA, but it didn’t appear that the Central Illinois Combat Club team member intentionally struck Richardson with his head and that it was a simple byproduct of following his adversary to the mat while he was slamming him.
“I truthfully don’t care [if they overturn it],” Childers said. “Everybody has seen it. I don’t care. My biggest opinion is if they want to overturn this right now, they have a lot of overturning to do. This is like wow, you want to overturn this but there is some stuff in MMA that you are going to just say ‘oh no we are not going to do that but we are going to pay attention to this right here.’ You people are a little ridiculous. To me it is over, everyone has seen it. What happened had happened. You can’t overturn that.”
The win improved Childers’s record to a perfect 8-0 since turning professional. Prior to going pro, the fighter who is nicknamed “the Working Man” had an extensive amateur career which he said is close to 30 fights in total and included him winning three different amateur titles.
“To me, I thought it was very smart to kinda go out there and just see what I was made of before I actually go pro,” Childers said. “I didn’t know exactly how everything would work out before I actually made the jump to pros and wanting to compete with those guys.”
If the victory stands, the 31-year-old would be a perfect 3-0 inside the LFA and would be on a shortlist of fighters that could be considered to battle for the vacant featherweight title. Despite the string of success, Childers isn’t interested in calling for his next opponent.
“Line them up, I don’t give a sh*t,” Childers stated. “I will know your name when they tell me I am going to compete against you… I don’t care. Until I sign that contract against you, you are not important to me.”
The LFA has been the leading promotion to help propel fighters into the UFC, and Childers appears to be on the same trajectory as others before him. Despite likely being on the cusp of a call-up to the UFC, Childers isn’t too concerned with it.
“I have confidence in myself, I know I can beat anybody,” Childers said. “I have always felt that way. I am just taking fights as they come. I hope I am right there. I have always dreamed of being there, to be honest. At the same time, I don’t give a shit. I just want big fights, I want to get paid and I just want to keep going.”