Joaquin Buckley made his third walk to the UFC octagon since August 8 this past Saturday, and we may have a potential future star on our hands. To have fought Kevin Holland on six days notice when Trevin Giles withdrew, to having Performance of the Night knockouts in his last two. It’s safe to say he’s where be belongs.
Buckley performed the sure Knockout of the Year last month on October 11 against undefeated talent Impa Kasanganay with that epic, just gorgeous jumping spinning back kick, one of the most vicious, and one of the most flashy KO’s any of us will ever see.
He followed that up with another vicious second-round KO victory, this time over another fellow striker, Jordan Wright, who was also undefeated coming in.
Kasanganay was 8-0, and Wright was 11-0 (1 NC) coming into their fights with Buckley, when he was 10-3 and 11-3 coming in.
We saw from his Holland fight that he was a heavy-swinging boxer for the most part, but he’s really started to put that all together in his last two.
When thinking of what’s next for this bright young prospect, there’s really only one direction we’re leaning towards, James Krause.
Rumor has it, Krause’s rumor, states that Buckley asked to come spar some of Krause’s team, considering they’re both from the same area of Missouri. Krause took that as a hint of disrespect, and rightfully so.
Not to say Buckley’s in the wrong, but you don’t just ask a team leader if you can come in and spar. To come in to train, practice, spar the selected talents the coach chooses for you, sure. Asking to come in to spar means one thing, Buckley wants to see where he’s at, and maybe he wants to take the easier route to training.
Krause stated the following regarding Buckley: “In conversation, I have never heard anybody ever say a good word about Buckley, ever. And he’s close to me, he lives three, four hours away from me. So, that is, just, start (with) that. He hits me up saying he wants to come spar.
“Like, that’s not how my gym works. I don’t have any interest in part timers. Like guys don’t just come in and out. You’re either on my team, or you’re not on my team. And it’s not a bad thing, just for what I want to do, it’s not an option.
“Right? You’re either here or you’re not. He just wants to come spar, he basically wants to come fight people. I’ve seen it, we don’t spar hard to begin with, so I can send you the screenshots if you want. He said there’s like bro code so he can’t post the screenshots, I’ll send ’em right to you, I don’t give a shit.
“He basically just said he wants to come spar, I said, ‘dude, that’s not how it works here.’ He’s like, ‘well how does it work there?’ I said, ‘well you’re either on the team or you’re not on the team.’ Like, I don’t have any interest in taking on part timers.
“You know what I mean, like that’s not what I want to do. I want to work with people and build. And he spouted off at the mouth saying something along the lines of, ‘well it’s obvious why you don’t want me to come, ’cause I’d do you and your whole team dirty,’ or whatever, ‘good luck though.’
“I said, ‘hold on a second dude, like, I’ve been in the UFC longer than you’ve been fighting kid, if you think for one second anybody here is afraid of you, you’re crazy.’ Once again, (I’m) paraphrasing but I’ll send you the screenshots if you wanna see ’em.
“He kept getting lippy with me until I was like, ‘dude, I’ll fuck you up’. You know what I mean? It is what it is. Set a fight up, if you wanna fight, I’ll come back up to (1)85. I’m not an 85er, but I’ll fight him at 85. And, ya know, he didn’t like that.
“It’s been blown out of proportion like way bigger (than it needed to be), like, I just said that, and I said, ‘dude, get the fuck on. I don’t need you here, you reached out to me. I had 35 fighters on my mat yesterday morning, you had four in the picture you posted. I don’t need you, you need me.
“So, ya know what I mean? You reached out to me, not the other way around. I never even asked for you. And it boils down to this, he’s an asshole. I don’t have patience for that, and that’s not the culture of my gym.
“Everybody in my gym is here to help one another. We’re not here to fight, we’re not here to spar, we’re here to get better every single day. He does not fit the culture of my gym, I have no desire to bring somebody like that with that attitude into my gym.”
After Buckley knocked Jordan Wright out on Saturday, he had the following to say in response to Krause. He was asked if when he had Wright hurt, if he knew the end was near: “Yes sir. When I seen his eyes roll back in the back of his head, you know I’m a nice guy man. He’s a nice guy, that’s why I didn’t wanna hurt him.
“But ya know, there’s other dudes out there I wanna fight, who (are) talking that nonsense, and I really wanna give it to him. Because when I hurt him, the referee can’t save him. Ya’ll know who I’m talking about.”
Joe Rogan then asked who he was referring to: “Ya’ll know who I’m talking about. Look my name up on YouTube, you will see him. He’s the only person talking stuff. I don’t need to give his name out, just do your homework and you’ll know who I’m talking about. Fight Island, January 23!”
This is very intriguing because we heard Krause’s side of things last month when he fought Claudio Silva, and he got more into it on Mike Swick’s podcast. Now we have Buckley’s side of things, sort of. We know he wants that fight, we know he doesn’t like Krause.
Krause also shared the following on Facebook just yesterday: “I’ve asked for the fight twice now. Nobody else from my team is fighting you. It’s me or move the fuck on. If they want the fight tell them to send me a contract. If not I’m done talking about it.”
This is also interesting because Krause is a natural welterweight that’s fought much of his career at lightweight, and he’s only fought a single time at middleweight, where Buckley regularly fights at. That lone middleweight fight was against Trevin Giles earlier this year in February.
He lost that fight via split decision, though just about everyone screamed robbery. Krause definitely won the first and third rounds of that fight, and definitely lost the second, but that’s neither here nor there. He looked great against a talented middleweight that finishes just about everyone he fights in Giles.
Oh, not to mention, Krause took that fight on one days notice. He didn’t find out until weigh-in day, and he still put on a performance like he did. He got tired, but he stuck in there and did what he needed to do. He said he’d go up again for this fight, and we just have to hope the UFC can put it together.
Krause did say he was taking the rest of the year off to coach his fighters, but January 23 is next year, it may be too soon though. That’s only a month or maybe a little more of a camp, and it will probably be on Fight Island, though that’s still to be determined.
Buckley’s just 26-years-old, he’s still very much a growing talent, while Krause is 34-years-old, better than he’s ever been.
Buckley’s also four inches shorter than Krause, but has a sizable reach advantage, standing 5’10” with a 76” reach, and Krause standing 6’2” with a 73.5” reach.
The reach is something Krause will definitely have to watch out for, Buckley can crack and his arms are incredibly long. Krause has only ever been knocked out once, and it’s not even on his record.
He got knocked out by one of the most well rounded strikers in the sport, someone who everyone had very high expectations for, Justin Lawrence on The Ultimate Fighter 15.
Krause was finished by Bobby Green with strikes, but that whole fight, and stoppage was as controversial as it gets. Krause is of course the far more experienced fighter as well, boasting a record of 28-8, while Buckley is still just 12-3, he’s well on his way though.
14 of Krause’s 28 wins come via submission with eight knockouts, while nine of Buckley’s 12 wins come via knockout, the other three being decisions. This would be a pretty epic encounter to say the least.
Who takes it should this bout take place?