Exclusive: Dean Garnett reacts to his KO victory at Hexagone MMA 6

After several years away from the cage, Dean Garnett, made an explosive comeback at Hexagone MMA 6 at the Zenith Arena in Paris, France.

With an overwhelming desire to reach his full potential, the Liverpudlian travelled to the French capital with a point to prove. And with the weight of the world on his shoulders, the 34-year-old rose to the occasion.

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Read: Exclusive: Ernesta Kareckaite talks championship win at Hexagone MMA 6 (sporf.com)

While Miguel Haro entered the bout with mass experience and a respectable set of skills, he couldn’t handle the firepower heading his way. Inside just thirty seconds, the away fighter unleashed a brutal combination to send his opponent tumbling towards the canvas, before finishing him with vicious ground and pound.

And despite wanting the contest to have gone longer, Garnett came away from the fight with an overwhelming sense of pride.

He told Sporf: “I would’ve liked a little more cage time. But I’m not going to complain about a nice easy finish. I don’t think I ate a clean shot, I came out unscathed, and I’m already back in the gym working on the next project.”

Garnett continued: “I’ve been on the mat, I’m not someone who’s been away from the sport; it’s totally the opposite. So, I knew I was an improved fighter. I didn’t think Miguel would be that aggressive; I wanted us to have a bit more of a dance. But I hit him with a hard low kick, and I could tell he wanted to get me back.

“By being over-aggressive, he over-exposed himself, and I caught him with a clean shot. I still wasn’t eyeing up the finish, but my corner team noticed he was hurt, but I thought he’d slipped. It was natural then to just finish him off.”

Dean Garnett talks fighting for the Hexagone MMA Championship

Throughout his career, the bantamweight has loved competing outside of the UK. So, it comes as no surprise that he cherished the experience of showcasing his talents to the Parisian crowd.

He admitted: “It was nice to visit Paris. The trip was excellent, and it was a real privilege to work with Hexagone as well. They’re very personable, approachable and professional. They’re exactly what I needed at this point of my career. They gave me a platform, and I utilised it to the best of my ability. I’d be very proud to be the face of that promotion.

In his post-fight interview, Garnett called for a title shot. And with Hexagone MMA 7 taking place at the Futoroscope Arena in Poitiers, France, he’s hopeful of fighting for the belt in just six weeks’ time.

The martial artist beamed: “It’s what I’m pushing for. If it doesn’t happen, that’s ok; I’m sure they’ll give it me at the next event. But I would happily fight three more times this year. I want to have my most active year to date.”

After a storied career, he believes that wrapping the strap around his waist would cement his already tremendous legacy.

He said: “It’d be a massive achievement, the biggest of my career. That’s exactly where my mind is fixated. I got back from Paris, and I’ve been in the gym ever since. We’re already preparing to take this belt.”

Dean Garnett talks about his relationship with Muhammad Mokaev

During his time away from competition, the MMA star has dedicated his time to helping others, running a post-16 programme which gives students the opportunity to work towards a B-Tech. Through this, he’s helped young people with various difficulties develop their skills and focus their attention on a positive goal.

In addition, he’s developed the tools of UFC prospect, Muhammad Mokaev, who’s currently en route to becoming the youngest champion in the promotion’s history. And through his sparring sessions with the up-and-comer, Garnett realised that he’s got plenty left in the tank.

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He claimed: “It reminds me that my body is still young. I haven’t been in all these crazy wars. I don’t train with people who try and injure me in the gym. So, in terms of miles on the clock, I’m a pretty healthy 34-year-old, with five or six good years in him if I do everything right.”

While the Brit missed out on a chunk of his prime, his victory last Sunday highlighted the fact that he’s still very much at the peak of his powers. And with his eyes set firmly on claiming the Hexagone MMA title, he’s going to be extremely tough to beat.

Featured Image Credit: Hexagone MMA