Brad Wheeler – Gunning for the Gold

Saturday June 7th will see a new Lightweight champion crowned as Curt Warburton takes on Stevie Ray but elsewhere on the card fellow 155lb fighter Brad “The Crazy Kid” Wheeler will be looking to extend his current three fight win streak on his quest to a future title opportunity. “With another win on June 7th that would be four straight wins and make me 5-1 in my last six fights. So I would like to think I could be fighting for the Cage Warriors Title in the future.”

Standing in front of The Crazy Kid will be Jason “The Animal” Cooledge who is returning to Cage Warriors and is in desperate need for a win under the promotion. So two fighters on two different ends of the spectrum but Wheeler is certainly not overlooking his opponent Cooledge. “Whenever someone is coming off a loss it is dangerous because they want to get back in the win column, so I have to expect the best Jason Cooledge to show up. I’ve watched quite a few of his fights and he is very tough and durable.”

The fight certainly has every chance of claiming FOTN with two young fighters who give their heart and souls everytime they step into the cage. Whilst Wheeler is known for his slick ground game and Cooledge for his striking and durability Wheeler is happy and ready wherever this fight ends up. “Its MMA and I train all areas. I will fight wherever it goes and I wouldn’t mind a three round stand up war. I’m sure the crowd will enjoy it.”

While Wheeler is known for his BJJ game training out of the MMA Clinic under Michael Russell he has been in the sport for long enough to know that he needs to continue to evolve as the sport moves on. “MMA is definitely more well rounded now rather than Style Vs Style. So I am always training in all areas and looking to improve in every training session to learn new skills to add to my arsenal.”

For this training camp Wheeler has also looked to focus on his striking and has
returned to his boxing club to reignite his passion for striking. “Sometimes you have a routine and it can get repetitive and a bit boring so I thought I would mix it up.” And Wheeler also was able to train with some southpaw fighters who were able to imitate his opponents style. “At my boxing club I was able to sharpen my hands and get some rounds in with some southpaws seeing as Cooledge is a southpaw.”

The reality of being a figher in the UKMMA scene means that for Wheeler he has to maintain a full time job as well as fit in his training and dieting which is a tough ask for anyone. “I am on site four days a week and have one day at college so I am up at 5:30am everyday and will go to work with training straight after. I get home about 10pm most nights.” And while the routine is not ideal Wheeler appreciates and understands that a fighters wage just isnt enough for him to get by on. “Money just doesn’t grow on trees.”

The dieting side of camp is made even harder for Wheeler at work while his fellow colleagues get to eat and drink whatever they want all year round while he endures his strict weight cutting routine to get to 155lbs. In his past two fights both of his opponents have failed to make the required weight limit (although one had taken the fight on a weeks notice) and this really gets under his skin. “It is very annoying because I have a very tough weight cut myself but I always make weight.” Wheeler has no excuses for those missing weight and thinks that if they can’t make weight they need to buck their ideas up. “If you can’t make weight, change your weight class, change your diet, but do something about it to make sure you make weight.”

The UFC’s most recent brit signing was fellow Cage Warriors fighter Ian Entwistle who Brad has a lot of history with. Having fought Entwistle twice under Cage Warriors the pair are tied at 1-1 (although Entwistles win was a DQ win) Wheeler would certainly be up for settling the score in a third bout some time in the future. “If he still wanted a rematch I would happily do it.” But it seems that Wheeler is more interested in the prospect of fighting for the UFC than finshing off the rivalry with Entwistle. “I would take that fight but not because Ian deserves the rematch. But because it would be a chance to fight in the UFC.” And while Entswistle has looked very impressive in his last few fights for Cage Warriors Wheeler isn’t too convinced that the UFC has done their homework in signing Entwistle. “Everyone who has seen both of our fights knows that I smashed him twice. But he is 8-1 and I am 12-9 so maybe they look at the numbers too much?”

With former opponents being snapped up by the UFC Wheeler has his goals set out for him and will keep doing all he can to make sure he exceeds them. “With my win streak increasing and maybe a few more wins for Cage Warriors, which is the best show in Europe I am sure I won’t go unnoticed and it will all help in my goal of being in the UFC.”

Be sure to follow Brad on twitter @BradTheCrazyKid

Leave a Reply