Shane Campbell

Shane Campbell on Unified MMA 41 and a possible UFC return

Shane Campbell tests skills against Michael Hill for the super lightweight championship at Unified MMA 41 on September 24th. This goes down at River Cree Resort and Casino in Edmonton, Alberta, and broadcasts on UFC Fight Pass.

I spoke with the former UFC veteran ahead of this title defense. The excerpts from our interaction is below.

Shane Campbell

How Shane Campbell is feeling with this return

“Oh absolutely, there’s a huge range between fights for me. The longest of my career. So excited to finally get back in there.”

If frustrations set in during this period of competitive dormancy

“Yeah, I think frustration has been a universal emotion for everyone. But the whole thing put a wrench in my plan for sure. Over the last couple of years.”

Looking to get back to UFC

“Absolutely. I mean I’m running out of time in my old age here. So I got to get a couple of good high profile fights in before I’m done. But throughout the last two years, I was 32 to 34. Which is kind of like a man’s prime years. So I never got to fight in those prime years. So it’s kind of do or die here. I got a couple more in before I’m done and, yeah. Time waits for no man.”

Taking arguably the toughest available test in regional Canadian MMA in Michael Hill 

“From my understanding, he’s pretty much the only one across Canada that accepted it. We were trying to get me on the last Unified and we couldn’t work out an opponent. So this is an option. If there’s anyone else, I kind of just lost my first place on Tapology for across Canada. But I’m willing to take on anyone right after this. It is tough because we’re going up in weight class for me anyway, right? He’s coming down a little bit, he’s definitely going to be the bigger guy.”

Unified MMA

Working with guys like Jake Shields, Francis Ngannou, and Kevin Lee out in Las Vegas

“Absolutely, I try to get a lot out of every gym that I end up going to right? It’s funny the tricks and stuff that you’ll learn in the fight game, it’s not always where you’d expect to find it. But I was at Xtreme (Couture) for over three months training daily and got over 150 rounds of sparring in. Feeling pretty good.”

Campbell’s recuperation routine after all of his hard training

“Absolutely, yeah. Getting in the hyperbaric chambers. Just getting oxygen to every part of your body is going to heal and do extremely well for the body in general. But like as I’m getting older, I’ve got nagging injuries everywhere. That aspect is definitely helping my confidence, that’s for sure.”

Wanting to get into coaching when his competitive career wraps up

“Yeah, absolutely. I’ve been teaching for almost just as long as I’ve been fighting. Traveling the world, teaching seminars all over. I have a gym in Edmonton here. So, if I was ever allowed to be open (laughs). I teach people here, wherever I go I teach people. Do pad work and stuff. I really enjoy teaching seminars. But every little aspect about it. I’m a martial artist, I’m gonna be in this for life and this was what I do wherever I go.”

Being back in Canada for some high-level MMA training

“I’m up in Edmonton. Just staying here. Trying not to travel around too much. It’s not as easy, you know what I mean? I got a good group of guys here, a bunch of 155er’s. I’m working at the Shaved Bears mostly there with them.”

Unified MMA 41

Tanner Boser, KB Bhullar, and Graham Park working at Shaved Bears MMA alongside Campbell

“A champion mindset and the gym is filled with them there. So, like I talked about before, the energy is phenomenal. And it helps. Even if I’m not working with the bigger guys nearly as much. The more bodies in the room, the better the day feels.”

Focusing on another UFC run but also being open to other combat disciplines aside from MMA

“Wherever I’m able to get a fight here in the next little while is pretty good. I’m a champion of Fight Night as well as Unified here in Alberta. They offer bare-knuckle boxing as well as some kickboxing stuff. So I’m down to fight any ruleset really. As long as I’m not a complete dog in it. But you can see me in some bare-knuckle boxing or hopefully some Muay Thai coming up here pretty soon as well.”

Parting thoughts for Shane Campbell

“I mean no. Just, we’ll see what happens here in September. Hopefully, collect another belt. We’ll see how that goes. And yeah, there’s gonna be tons of options right away afterward. But yeah, if anyone wants to come down and see me at my gym over there…I’m here in Edmonton, come on down.”

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