GLORY 17’s Wayne Barrett on Middleweight Tourney: “I Plan to be in the Final”, Believes More MMA Fighters Headed to Kickboxing
By Kelsey Mowatt
Wayne Barrett may be regarded as one of kickboxing’s rising middleweights, but the American striker will face a gauntlet of world class talent when he enters GLORY’s middleweight tourney on June 21st.
The 27 year-old fighter, who was signed by GLORY after just one pro bout, will face Romania’s Bogdan Stoica in the competition’s quarterfinals. In addition to Barrett and the 40 plus fight vet, the tournament will feature established fighters like Simon Marcus, Joe Schilling, Artem Levin, Alex Pereira, Filip Verlinden and Melvin Manhoef. In other words, there are considerable bragging rights in store for whoever wins the tourney
Marcus is set to face Schilling on the same side of the brackett as Barrett, and on the other side, Levin will battle Pereira, and Verlinden will face Manhoef.
“To be honest, the way I think the bracket is set up right now, it’s going to have to be someone, aside from Stoica, Joe (Schilling) or Simon (Marcus), unfortunately,” Barrett noted on Full Contact Fighter Radio recently, when asked to predict who he might face in the competition’s finale. “I plan to be in the final, I know I’m going to be in the final, God willing.”
“I don’t want to put my foot in my mouth, I know that it’s a fight and anything can happen,” added Barrett, who has gone 3-0 to date with GLORY and is coming off a decision win over Schilling. “But I believe that I’ve done my homework on these guys; I’ve been studying these guys before this tournament even came about, and I say that with honor, not disrespect.”
There is no shortage of interesting storylines tied to the middleweight tourney, including the fact that it will mark the promotional debut of Marcus. The 27 year-old Canadian is widely considered to be one of the planet’s best, pound-for-pound strikers, and has joined GLORY with an awe inspiring 39-0-1 record.
“Simon Marcus’s record is unbelievable,” Barrett said. “To be in the ring with him, I don’t just want to be in the ring, I don’t just get in the ring to say ‘oh, it’s an experience,’ I hate when guys say that. I go in there to win. If I’m the guy to give him his first loss then it’s a great honor to beat him. It’s not something for me to boast about; it’s an honor.”
“The best way I can represent myself is to give them the best fight they’ve ever had,” the New York city fighter furthered. “That’s my mindset.”
Barrett also went out of his way to mention the always dangerous Manhoef, who is returning to kickboxing competition for the first time since 2011. According to Barrett, he believes the MMA vet could be one of many who will return to kickboxing in the coming months.
“With the money that is GLORY is paying out, guys from MMA are definitely going to jump ship and come to GLORY,” Barrett relayed. “It’s inevitable. It’s something that you can’t avoid…with this kind of money being out there, and the mistake most guys from MMA say is ‘oh, this is easy’, you don’t have to worry about a takedown, you don’t have to worry about elbows, but when you get in there, you’re like ‘oh snap.’ You know what I mean. It’s different.”
GLORY 17 will be hosted by the Forum in Inglewood, California. “The Last Man Standing” portion of the card, which will also see Daniel Ghita fight Rico Verhoeven for the heavyweight title, will be available via pay-per-view.