Reggie Barnett Jr. is just days away from the biggest combat sports contest of his career. Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship returns to Tampa, FL for BKFC Tampa 2 on Saturday, July 23rd. In the evening’s main event, Barnett Jr. will challenge Jarod Grant for the interim bantamweight world championship.
Ahead of his showdown with Grant, Barnett Jr. spoke with Dylan Bowker to discuss his opponent and how he believes things will play out when they toe the line on Saturday night.
“Jarod is a really skilled boxer. I give him credit. If you let him dictate the pace he’ll do initially what I could, you know, came in the sport doing, you know, outboxing people. But this is bare-knuckle fighting and I can fight both. I feel like I’m a better boxer than him, but I’m incredibly a better bare-knuckle fighter than him and there’s a difference between the two.
“It took me a while, even within the sport for that switch to go off. In the last [fight] I forgot that I was a bare-knuckle fighter at the beginning of the fight. Then y’all saw the switch go off and it went from me trying to outbox him to a bare-knuckle fight.”
Reggie Barnett Jr. Hopes to Hand Jarod Grant His First ‘O’ in BKFC
Currently listed as the No. 3 ranked bantamweight in the promotion with a record of 6-2, Barnett Jr. will be tasked with handing Jarod Grant his first ‘O’ under the BKFC banner. ‘Kid Gatti’ is sitting at 5-0 in the squared circle with his first four victories coming by way of knockout.
“I take nothing away from Jarod. He’s a great fighter. I don’t think that’s truly been tested yet. I think for me I am his biggest test and I think for myself, it’s not a test. It’s a question. Are you still where you need to be? Where you want to be? Are you fake now? That’s a question I’m gonna have to ask myself.”
Knowing this may be his only opportunity to have BKFC gold wrapped around his waist, Barnett Jr. will leave it all on the line, going from the jail cell to the top of the mountain in combat sports.
“I’m putting my all into it so when it’s time for that question to be answered, at least I know that no matter what the outcome is, I’m leaving everything in that squared circle as I always have. It’s just who I am.”
Featured image credits to Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship