Lance Palmer will face Steven Siler for the featherweight PFL Championship and the chance at a million dollars. Palmer defeated Siler via a unanimous decision in 2017. The rematch takes place on December 31 at Madison Square Garden and airs live on NBCSN at 7 pm est. I caught up with Palmer ahead of his fight.
Have you had any trouble staying motivated for the fight since you already have a victory over Siler?
“For me it’s a title fight, where we didn’t have a title on the line last time we fought and I know how tough Steven Siler is and when I fought him last time, he was a very tough opponent, it was a great fight and he always comes to fight and puts on a show. I know it’s not going to be an issue when we go in the cage, I know he’s a guy I have to prepare for, he’s a guy that’s not easy to put away, so for me, it’s really easy to be motivated for this fight because I kinda cancel out that last fight because there was nothing really riding on the line, that was just a fight, this is a fight for a title and we both earned our spot here, we both won our way to the finals, so we both earned that respect from each other.”
Is there less pressure on you now that you don’t have to worry about getting a finish to get points to advance?
“Not really, I think there is more pressure to get a finish now because I had already beaten him once. I know he is better but I’m also better. I had a few opportunities to finish in the first fight and I think I can capitalize in those positions in this fight because even though he’s a better fighter, I’m also a better fighter from what I was. My goal is to always finish and that’s why I had two finishes in the regular season, I didn’t get the two finishes in the one night (playoffs) that was more of a win and move on scenario, this is more of an opportunity to open up and get those finishes again.”
Have you been able to take a step back and think about the season yet and what are your thoughts on competing at Madison Square Garden again?
“It’s really cool, going into the fights you don’t really think about it, but the week of it’s cool to take it all in. When I was here first time in June, that was the very first fight of the season for all weight classes so, to start the season off here and finish the season off here is a really cool experience.”
How has your experience been with the PFL?
“I think it’s been really good, I’ve been with World Series since 2013, I believe it was, 13 or 14 and now we’re here at the end of 2018 with PFL, some of the same people, some different people. But when it comes down to it, the organization and the league as a whole, and everybody behind the scenes, they’ve always been really good to me, they’ve always treated me with respect and they are all great people. So, even though there are some new people added on, everybody involved with PFL has been really good to me.”
After this fight, what does the future entail for Lance Palmer?
“Take a little time off, go home, relax. My wife is competing in the Arnold this year for the first time as a professional, so I’m excited for that, March 2. Season 2 starts in May like Ray said, there’s not much time really. So, go home and enjoy my family for a little while because when I train in Vegas, I don’t get to see my family all year basically so I’m excited for that.”