South Africa’s JP Buys fought for the first time on U.S. soil in 2017 on Dana White’s Contender Series. “The Young Savage” has returned to America, up a weight class, and will make his LFA debut, Friday night at LFA 78 against Crsitan Rodriguez.
Now being at bantamweight, how much confidence did it give you after going up, winning the title, and defending it so successfully there for EFC?
“Yeah so, me walking around and fighting at bantamweight, I’m not the biggest bantamweight in the world, but I definitely think I’m one of the most physical guys because of my background. I’ve trained with world champions, UFC fighters, many fighters that fight at the highest level at my division. I think I match up pretty evenly with them, although I might not be as big as them. As my last fight went by, people didn’t think that I would be able to fight in the later rounds. But me walking around lighter, I feel a lot more confident. I fought 19 minutes without the break, if you take it; so I fought up until four minutes in the fourth round, before I finished my opponent. So, I’m really confident. I enjoy the process a lot more.”
When you came out here, in 2017, you came out to change your life. Obviously, with the person (wife) sitting next to you now, it did change your life. How unexpected was it the way that the trip here, to Vegas, did change your life?
“In 2017, I thought, ‘ok, everything is going to unfold perfectly; I’m gonna get the Contender fight, I’m going to win, I’m going to get signed.’ I just thought I was going to be on top of the world, that was pretty humbling. It showed me; ‘listen, settle down, you have a lot of time in the sport.’ I think if it was not for that then I wouldn’t of sat here right now. I don’t know but everything works out, and what ever is meant to be will happen. So yeah, meeting Cheyanne was a big thing, both of our lives have changed; tremendously. I mean, my life’s changed. I walk around lighter now then what I did when I used to fight at 125 (pounds), just because of her. She keeps me on track, she makes sure that I do the right thing, I get the right nutrition. Whenever we don’t want to train, or one of us don’t want to train, the other one keeps the opposite one of us accountable for it. So yea, I mean, this is definitely the best thing that could of happen to both us.”
We’re going to go see you do your job at LFA 78 against Christian Rodriguez. What do we see out of JP Buys now that we’re seeing him on the big platform again, UFC Fight Pass, for the first time since 2017?
“Yeah, you’re going to see me be the Jake Buys that you can see on my records. You can expect you’re going to see a finish. I’m going to come in there, I’m going to get that guy out of my way as soon as possible. I’m looking at getting another fight in before the end of the year, that way I would have had three fights. So, I’m not going in there to play around, spend a lot of time in there, like my previous fight. I’m literally going to go in there and look to take him out in one round. In 30 seconds, if it’s possible. I want to get in there, get the job done. I want to show Texas, I want to show America, and I want to show the world what the ‘young savage’ is about.”
LFA 78 takes place November 15th at the Bell County Expo Center in Belton, TX.
Check out the full interview with JP Buys at the top of the page.