Nick Newell isn’t worried about any jitters at Bellator 260, despite coming off an extended layoff.
That’s because Newell (16-3) has had an extended layoff before, having retired for a time from MMA entirely.
“Last time I had a long layoff, I had two and a half years off. I won in the first round, so I think that it’s just an attitude thing,” he stated during this week’s Bellator 260 media day. “It all comes down to perception and how you deal with things. I think that I’ll be fine.”
In fact, added Newell, “I actually felt worse when I was fighting every other month.” In comparison, with the time away since October 2019, “I feel good, I feel rested, I feel ready to go.”
On the topic of motivation, the former WSOF star suggested that in the end, he was addicted to wining. It’s something that started back in his amateur wrestling career — and that has carried over to this day.
“I wasn’t always the best. When I first started wrestling, I lost my first 17 matches,” admitted Newell, adding that “I went on to be All-State. My senior year, I won 53 matches. I went on to college, all this, so I know what it’s like to lose.”
Then, things turned around. “When I got my first taste of victory, it was something special. I kind of got addicted to it. Here I am, all these years later, still going it and loving every second of it.”
Watch the full Bellator 260 media day interview with Nick Newell above. The lightweight goes up against Bobby King on Friday, June 11 at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT.