Having come off a loss in his first fight of 2021 to Mateo Vogel at CFFC 95 this past April, bantamweight Garrett Armfield’s focus was just to pick up the win and avoid losing his second straight fight for the first time in his career when he took on Alex Macias at Shamrock FC 329 in June.
Wasting no time, Armfield went to his bread and butter of wrestling and picked up a submission victory for his first win of 2021.
“I think it was a fight I played it very smart,” Armfield told MMAWeekly.com. “I just took him down and went straight for the finish because I knew that I wanted to get right back to training and get back to getting better and evolving.
“It was a smart fight for me, but I’m ready to keep going and take on tougher opponents and continue on with the same results in the past.”
One big difference for Armfield of late is the fact that he’s no longer trying to brute force his wins right away, and rather be more measured in his fights.
“I was going in just crazy and finishing them right away, so I think my development this past year and were I’ve matured mostly is slowing my game down and not trying to put 100% power into every punch,” said Armfield. “Just fighting like a true professional instead of just like someone who goes out to maul you.
“I always push the pace and always go for the finish, but a big development of mine is staying calm and following a game plan. Yes we want to get a first round finish, but if we can get the decision, let’s get the decision too.”
This Saturday in Kansas City, Missouri, Armfield (6-2) will look to build up a winning streak for himself when he takes on Mark Slyter (6-3) in the 135-pound co-main event of Shamrock FC 332.
“I know he’s going to try to take me down,” Armfield said of Slyter. “I know he’s a wrestler. But I’m going to be loose. Where I’ve lost previously I was so worried about getting taken down that I was tense and wasn’t relaxed, so now if he wants to take my down I’ll sprawl, counter-wrestle you and take you down and beat you up.
“I know my opponent has a game plan. And my game plan, I can beat him everywhere. I know I have the skillset to do that.”
For Armfield the goal is to build a skillset for him that can make for a prolonged career at the UFC level rather than someone who comes down just as quickly as he goes up.
“To be honest I’ve seen guys with similar records who have fought less competition fighting in the UFC,” said Armfield. “(My manager asked) do I want to be a guy that goes in there and has one contract and is here today or gone tomorrow, or do I want to be a career fighter and make real money off this thing? So I always think about it one fight at a time.
“I put in the hard work and I put in the effort, so it’ll be there whenever it’s ready, but for right now I’m just focused on October 9.”