Mehdi Barghi has used his time away from the Circle to take his all-around MMA game to a new level.
Armed with these improvements, he expects to earn his first victory in ONE Championship on Friday, 3 June.
However, Barghi feels certain that his preparations will pay off when it comes down to crunch time at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
“I’m very happy and looking forward to this fight. This will be my chance to show everybody that I can win fair and square. But at the end of the day, this is just another fight. Winning and losing are just the two ends of it. I worked very hard for it, and I’m very confident that I’m going to win the fight.”
Barghi recently reshuffled his coaching staff and now represents Eltefat gym under his boxing coach, Aidin Talebi.
The 36-year-old has also added more Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu into his training regimen in an effort to bolster his ground arsenal and complement his life spent on the wrestling mats.
He has complete faith in his new team and believes their game plan will lead to success in his return to action this Friday.
“For this fight, we know that my opponent has a background in wrestling and jiu-jitsu. For wrestling, I’m very confident of who I am and where I am standing.
“For jiu-jitsu, I needed to level up my game, therefore I started training with two of Iran’s best jiu-jitsu coaches, Mr. Khoshbin and Mr. Bakhtyar Nejad. For the past three to four months, we were focused on improving my jiu-jitsu so I can keep my opponent down.
“And for boxing, I have been working with Mr. Talebi for years. I’m confident about the combination of these three. With their help, it will allow me to do what I want to do to my opponents.”
Mehdi Barghi Happy To Grapple With Wrestling Star Odie Delaney
Although both Mehdi Barghi and Odie Delaney are high-level wrestlers, the Iranian has no qualms about going to the ground with “The Witness.”
Even after watching Delaney secure a unique shoulder lock submission to defeat Thomas Narmo in his promotional debut earlier this year, Barghi wants their matchup at ONE 158 to hit the canvas.
“According to our plan, we will focus more on wrestling and jiu-jitsu because I want to fight on the ground. This is my game plan.”
Along with a high-level skill set and his background as a decorated wrestler in the United States, Delaney will enter Friday’s fight with a perfect record in his young MMA career.
That success has made him a rising star to watch in ONE Championship’s heavyweight division, but Barghi doesn’t expect “The Witness” to leave the Circle with his clean slate intact.
Instead, the Iranian Wrestling Champion thinks he can derail his rival’s momentum, finish their contest emphatically, and show that he’s a bigger threat in the weight class.
“I believe Odie is a strong opponent, otherwise he wouldn’t be competing in ONE. And it’s true that he’s undefeated, but it won’t last long.
“We expect the fight to last two rounds. In the second round, I will finish my opponent on the ground.
“For Odie, I will say this: Try your very best because I’m already coming in with 120 percent.”