There is a silver lining to every cloud, right? Well, as lame as this cliché may be, it’s also true. Legacy Fighting Alliance middleweight Josh Fremd can attest to as much.
“I got let go of both of my jobs,” Fremd told Combat Press. “I was managing a restaurant and bartending, and they both had to let me go, because of [COVID-19]. They both shut down.
“It’s kind of been a blessing in disguise. There’s been a little bit of struggling here and there, because unemployment isn’t too great, but I’ve been able to focus and train two to three times a day, six days a week. Before that, when I was working, I was only able to train once a day.
“I’ve been able to really double, almost triple, my training time, so I’ve been able to learn a lot.”
When the pandemic first hit, Fremd, who is originally from Pennsylvania, hadn’t fought since late 2018. He had moved to Denver to train with the Factory X fight team. When everything shut down, he found himself on the bench with the rest of the team. However, he finally returned to action in August to make his LFA debut. He went up against Lamar Gosey at LFA 89 and won by first-round knockout. Fremd made a quick turnaround seven weeks later with another first-round knockout, this time of Antonio Jones, a Dana White’s Contender Series alum, at LFA 93.
“I felt like that was me really releasing myself in the cage,” admitted Fremd. “[It was] like I was shot out of a missile going into that fight. I wanted to get in as fast and hard as I could, and see how fast I could end it, because I know he fought [UFC middleweight Edmen] Shahbazyan, and I was trying to get him out of there faster than Shahbazyan did.”
While Fremd was unsuccessful in that goal, he still got the early finish. With the win, he continued to climb the ranks of the LFA’s up-and-coming stable of fighters. He also extended his current winning streak to four in a row and took his pro record to 6-1.
Now, Fremd is embarking on his next mission. On Friday night, at LFA 98 in Park City, Kan., he headlines the night’s festivities when he faces Bruno Oliveira. Brazil’s Oliveira is 8-2 as a pro, but, outside of his last two fights, he has mostly faced inexperienced opponents. A handful of those men even had losing records.
Oliveira and Fremd each stand 6-foot-4, but the Brazilian will enjoy a four-inch reach advantage. This will be a new challenge for Fremd, who has only faced two pro opponents that topped the 6-foot mark.
“I know he comes from a good camp,” Fremd said of American Top Team’s Oliveira. “He’s long and lanky, just like me. He’s like 36 [years old], and he’s coming off of a knockout loss on the Contender Series in October.”
Fremd finished Gosey with a series of knees from the clinch, and he used his fists to polish off Jones. Oliveira has also displayed a knack for turning the lights out on his adversaries. Now, these two proven knockout artists collide.
“From a stylistic standpoint, I think it’s great,” said Fremd. “I always get matched up a lot with wrestlers or short [and] stocky muscular guys who want to try and take me down. This one, stylistically, is really good, because I know I have the edge in wrestling. I’ve been wrestling all my life, so I’m comfortable there. But he’s a stand-up guy, so he’s going to come in and want to fight stand-up. I’m more than willing to engage. If he wants to make it into a brawl, or he wants to stand outside and pick his shots, I’m comfortable in either scenario. It’s going to be a good one for the fans.
“I’m excited for this next one. I’m not as jittery and anxious to get in there and go crazy. I want to look like a technician in there. I’m going to be a completely different fighter in this one.”
Fremd is a very talented fighter. It is highly likely that fans will see him inside the UFC Octagon in the near future. Right now, though, they can find him in the LFA cage on UFC Fight Pass.
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