Heavyweight prospect Steve Mowry returns against Shaun Asher at Bellator 257 this Friday. Once again, the action goes down at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. Mowry (8-0) will look to maintain his perfect record, compiled over the last eight or so years, after starting out as an undefeated amateur.
Mowry knew early on in his MMA career that it was essentially going to be his life. In an exclusive interview with Cageside Press, the heavyweight recalled that “I knew whenever I started that if I fully committed myself to it, deeply immersed myself in the different aspects of the lifestyle, that I could probably do pretty well at it.” There were no assurances or guarantees, of course. Rather, it was “just something that you know. I didn’t have anything in my life that I was that passionate about and then all of a sudden MMA came around and put me on my head. So, it was just one of those things, I was like, ‘I’m going to give this fighting thing a go until I physically can’t anymore.'”
The right camp is more important than ever for up-and-coming MMA fighters, and Mowry is at a great one in Sanford MMA. “Funny story, back when it was the Blackzillians I was still an amateur and I got a call from a friend who knew somebody connected, who knew the people at Team Takedown.” At the time, Mowry continued, Jared Rosholt had been getting ready to fight Stefan Struve. “So they needed a tall, crazy body to help move around and help him get ready. So Team Takedown called me, I went out there, I was helping Jared Rosholt get ready for Stefan Struve.”
At that point, Mowry was going to be staying with a friend in Fort Lauderdale. Ahead of the trip, he booked a private session with famed coach Henri Hooft, since the gym wasn’t far from where Mowry would be staying. “I reached out to him on every account on social media that I possibly could. I went and did a private lesson with Henri and then… that was five and half years a ago and kind of after that it got the ball rolling to get me down to Florida.”
The experience of training with killers like those found at Sanford MMA is “pretty incredible,” exclaimed Mowry. “You don’t ever really feel more prepared for a fight than you would when you just got done sparing with Anthony Johnson, so that would be my big one. But being in a room with Kamaru [Usman] and Robbie [Lawler], two of the best welterweights to ever do it, it definitely gives you perspective, it gives you kind of like a direction, it kind of sets the standard on what you should be focusing on, what you shouldn’t be focusing on.”
Mowry’s fight against Asher at Bellator 257 was something of a late addition to the card. It arose after Asher was supposed to fight a teammate of Mowry’s, only for the fight (in another promotion) to fall through.
“So Shaun Asher was getting ready for a title fight against my teammate and I guess through a series of unfortunate circumstances that fight didn’t end up working out, while on my end we were only just getting a fight booked,” explained Mowry. “We had kind of gone through a couple opponents, just different things didn’t work out at different times and the last guy Shaun Asher said yeah. I was looking for an opponent and he just had a title fight fall through so it just kinda worked out.”
Despite Asher being out of action since 2019, Mowry is “anticipating the best Shaun Asher that’s ever walked into the cage.” Even more so with Asher’s title fight falling through. “I imagine that Shaun is going to use all of that momentum and all of that preparation he used for that, he’s going to try and roll that into this fight next weekend. I can only imagine that somebody who was getting ready for a five round title fight is going to bring just that much more intensity into his Bellator debut.”
Steve Mowry returns to action at Bellator 257 this Friday, April 16 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT.