Cage Titans 38’s Peter Barrett Revitalized Heading Into Jay Ellis Matchup
Starting off his career 8-0, it seemed inevitable Abington, Massachusetts’s Peter Barrett (8-2) would be in the UFC in no time. One of the more active fighters you’d find on the regional scene, Barrett won all of his professional victories in a 31 month stretch. “Slippery Pete” had heads turning, as his scrappy, brawling style made him the perfect face of regional promotion Cage Titans.
It was at this point in time, Barrett faced the most amount of adversity he had encountered in his professional career. His first career loss occurred this past June at Cage Titans 34— a loss that many (including Barrett) view as controversial. Barrett faced off against Michigan’s Drew Morais, and was stopped in the first round.
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“The first fight that I lost, I will defend it to the day I die,” says Barrett. “It was a very early stoppage. The ref told me to get up. I was getting up with one foot on the mat standing up and he called the fight.”
Barrett believes the bout’s referee was in a bit over his head, claiming the referee even apologized afterwards. According to Barrett, the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission (MSAC) echoed his displeasure.
“The state kind of encouraged him to go shadow other referees after that call,” says Barrett. “It was a main event fight and he wasn’t familiar with me. He wasn’t familiar with my fighting style and I really feel like that ref was out of place. There are a lot of other referees that I’ve grown up with in the sport that know me.”
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Looking to rebound from the controversy, Barrett signed on to fight TJ Brown five months later at Cage Titans 36. He would lose again– this time by unanimous decision. Even Barrett agreed the judges got this one right. He isn’t surprised his lost the bout against Brown– not in the least bit. In and out of camp in the weeks leading up to the bout, Barrett was going through some tough times in his personal life.
“I don’t think I was the better man that day,” says Barrett. “TJ was a great competitor and he put on a show, but he got the worst ‘Slippery Pete’ that’s ever showed up. I lost my dad unexpectedly in September. Then we closed and moved out the last week in October. We fought November 4th. My mind was very spread thin. I thought I could fight my way through the loss, but it just wasn’t the case. I just wasn’t completely there.”
There were, however, some positives Barrett was able to take away with him from the fight against Brown. “One thing I did show with TJ is I’m a tough-ass motherfucker and can take one hell of a beating,” laughs Barrett. “No one is going to knock me out. I’ve got balls of steel. It’s going to take more than you’re average guy to stop me. TJ allowed me to show that.”
The toughness Barrett displayed in the bout, is something he always knew existed. Despite the means it was displayed, Barrett is glad he was able to showcase it. Conversely, Barrett actually learned a lot of things about himself that will help him going forward.
“There are things to take away from that– be a little bit more aggressive,” explains Barrett. “Be a little bit more aware. If you’re going to make a mistake, make a mistake going 100mph, not 50mph.”
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Now refreshed, revitalized, and refocused Barrett has his sights set on his next battle. This Saturday night, Barrett will be taking on regional MMA legend Jay Ellis (15-75) in the co-headliner of Cage Titans 38. The event will stream live on FloCombat.com.
“Slippery Pete” is ready to return to form, and show fans and scouts what he can do when he is distraction-free. In addition to getting back to his old self, Barrett believes he has taken it one step further. If all goes according to plan, improvements will be on full display as well.
“Something I notice when I fight is I get almost robotic,” explains Barrett. “I just want to get in there, finish the fight, knock the kid out, and get out. Something I’ve really been working on is just getting in there and getting fluid, loose, and not so tight. [We’re] not necessarily focusing on winning, but focusing on scoring. I’m not looking for the finishing punch, I’m just looking for all the details that will lead to the finishing punch.”
Barrett still wants to bring the same energetic and frenetic style he always brings– just in a more disciplined manner. Although he knows all too well what could happen when the adrenaline starts flowing, and his primal instincts take over. All bets may be off.
“That’s what I like to think going in,” says Barrett, of being disciplined against Ellis. “Then that cage door shuts and I couldn’t tell you what happened– I just know I got my hand raised. I just really want to get in there and show that killer instinct. The second I smell blood, I’m going for the throat. I’m going for a head kick and trying to knock him out. At the same time, I don’t need to rush it.”
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When he’s not training, Barrett coaches high school wrestling. In fact, his newly established game plan is somewhat inspired by his coaching outlook.
“One of my seniors took fourth in New Englands this year,” says Barrett. “Something we drove into him all season was, ‘Alright, Tommy you need six takedowns in the first round.’ He’d go get the six takedowns. ‘Alright, Tommy you need five takedowns in the second round.’ He’d go get five takedowns.”
“Then, he’d look at us and say, ‘Can I pin him?’ And we’d say, ‘Ok, now you can go pin him.’ Pinning wasn’t the goal. The goal was to get the reps in a stressful environment with the eyes on and the record on the line. Can you get the ten takedowns before you get the pin. Just looking at those tasks instead of looking at the outcome.”
Standing across the cage from Barrett will be the aforementioned 90-fight veteran Jay Ellis. Like many fighters across the country, Barrett is familiar with the regional journeymen.
“I saw him fight the last time he came up to Cage Titans,” says Barrett. “I know he’s dangerous in the first round. He fought one of my teammates, Lucas Cruz, and put him on his butt. I know he has the power and he’s talented. I also know he’s only really good for the first round and his ground game sucks. He’s got nothing to lose and sometimes those are the most dangerous people to fight. He doesn’t care if he wins or loses. He’s just going to try to take my head off when he’s in there with me.”
How this fight will go down? Barrett sees many potential outcomes, but all with one thing in common.
“I’ve visualized this fight going a few ways and they all end with him on his back on the canvas staring at the lights.”
“For thank you’s– there’s a big sponsor that I just teamed up with called Zen Den in Norwell, Mass. They are a new aged health and wellness spot. You can get IV infusions with electrolytes and DCAs to make sure leading up to the fight you’re refueled. They do floating, cryotherapy, infrared saunas, hot yoga, massage therapy and sports specific eye training. I just finished up a concussion assessment with them and they were able to correct some motor imbalances. Also, I’d like to thank DJ Mike Giannetti– one of the best wedding DJ’s in the northeast. He’s a good friend of mine and always helps out. Thank you to Old Town Real Estate and Primed and Ready Meals. Bobby Farlin has been helping me out with all of the premade meals, making the weight cut really easy. Thanks to Top Game Management and Tyson Chartier. Tyson is one of the best in the game. Shout out to the schools: Sityodtong, Juniko, Skills of Strength and Hector Bermudez (‘The Universal Truth’) for the boxing.”- Slippery Pete
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