WSOF 12: Elvis Mutapcic Feels Improved and “Five Years Younger” Heading Into Bout With Kelvin Tiller
By FCF Staff
Although Elvis Mutapcic has lost just one fight since 2011, what transpired in his defeat to Jesse Taylor at World Series of Fighting 7, has prompted the middleweight to make some changes.
Heading into his December 7th fight with Taylor, not only had Mutapcic won five straight fights, he had forced himself onto a lot of people’s radars by winning the Maximum Fighting Championship title.
When Mutapcic squared off with Taylor, however, the 28 year-old was overwhelmed by the latter’s noted wrestling game. As a result, Mutapcic was handed a unanimous decision loss, and his bid to face David Branch for the WSOF belt ended.
“I made a few mistakes leading up to that fight. I changed my style. I made mistakes leading up to the fight and in my training camp,” Mutapcic relayed in a recent media call to promote the August 9th, WSOF 12 card, which will see him take on Kelvin Tiller. “I didn’t have the sense of urgency and I didn’t think he’d be able to control me the way he did. I learned the lesson the hard way.”
“I’ve improved my wrestling quite a bit and this is the first camp where I’ve been able to train full-time without working a full-time job,” furthered Mutapcic (13-3), who had scored wins over the likes of Sam Alvey, Joseph Henle and Cezar Ferreira before facing Taylor. “I feel like I’m five years younger. My will for it is a lot deeper than it was before and I’ve just fixed some holes I had in that fight.”
In Tiller, Mutapcic will face a fighter who has gone undefeated in his first six, professional fights. The 24 year-old was originally scheduled to fight Ronny Markes at WSOF 12. After Mutapcic’s original opponent Krasimir Mladenov withdrew due to injury, however, Tiller was booked to face “The King.” The Mutapcic-Tiller fight will be contested a catch-weight of 195 pounds.
“I don’t try to look too much at other fighters because they are evolving all the time. But I’ve picked up on (Tiller’s) general habits,” Mutapcic noted about Tiller, who has fought for Bellator on three occasions. “One of the things he’s very good at is he’s very explosive. He’s young, he’s hungry and he’s undefeated. When you’ve got a young undefeated guy, they have a little bit less fear, which is good for him and bad at the same time. He’s just an explosive guy who’s pretty well-rounded and he brings it.”
Like Mutapcic, Tiller has yet to compete in 2013, as the Kansas fighter hasn’t stepped into the cage since last June when he submitted Chris Henning. The bout took place under the Epic Fight Night banner.
“I don’t like studying my opponents,” Tiller relayed on the media call. “If you look at my fights, I stick with my style. I like to pressure people a lot and use a lot of takedowns. On the outside I like to use jabs and kicks. I’ve been training really hard and I’m just grateful for this opportunity.”
WSOF 12 will be hosted by the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, and the main card will be broadcast on the NBC Sports Network.