Former Boxer Pawel Wolak Making Transition to MMA. - MMA Forum - UFC Forums - UFC Results - MMA Videos
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Former Boxer Pawel Wolak Making Transition to MMA.

Pawel Wolak has a well earned reputation as one of the most exciting boxers in recent memory. All heart and guts in the ring, Wolak retired from boxing last December following his loss to Delvin Rodriguez on the undercard of Miguel Cotto's rematch with Antonio Margarito. The first Wolak vs. Rodriguez bout was named 2011 fight of the year by Bad Left Hook readers as well as winning the same award from the Boxing Writers Association of America and certainly deserved the honor as it was a beautifully violent and gutsy showing from both men.

Not the kind of man to sit around and do nothing, Wolak is going to try his hand at mixed martial arts with a long-term goal of getting to the UFC. Via Sherdog:

Quote:
"My background was as a successful New Jersey state wrester and kickboxer, so I am going back to my roots," Wolak told Sherdog.com. "Monte, [longtime advisor] Howard Horowitz and I will lay out the strategy. I will get to the UFC when I am ready to make a statement in the lightweight division. I am not going to jump in right away, but only when I know I can become champion. I have been training since December. Nobody will want to stand up with me, so I am working really hard on the ground game. I will visit camps with Monte and Howard as we get closer to making a run at this thing."
Wolak doesn't appear to be taking things lightly either.

He's being managed by Monte Cox who is getting him training with people who can actually raise his game. As evidenced by this tweet from Pawel this morning:

@PawelWolak
Pawel Wolak
Thanks to BWAA for my award and to Sherdog for breaking news of my signing with Monte Cox. Off to roll with @igorgracie

Working on the ground with Igor Gracie is a good first step. But Wolak is also working with Jim Miller and Constantinos Philippou. Say what you will about Cox, but he has the contacts to get Pawel working with guys that can teach him valuable lessons.

Wolak did add that he fell into boxing while training for MMA and just never went back because of how well he had done in boxing.

He's fought at 154-160 for his entire career so I can't see him ending up anywhere other than lightweight.

I'm going to get a little sappy for a minute and say that I'll be rooting for Wolak to actually make a legitimate run in MMA. It's going to be a rough transition, but he's working with the right guys and understands how to build a career and not rush things too much. At 30, he's not exactly young enough to take the slowest road possible. But no one gives more of himself in a ring or a cage than Wolak, he's got heart for days and the kind of will that is near impossible to break.

In short, he's got exactly the kind of mentality to actually make this work.

Source: http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2012/6/7/...sition-mma-ufc

Posted in here because I believe he's a legitimate UFC prospect and I don't think it will be too long until we see him in the octagon.

and a pic:
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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It states he was a state wrestler but anyone got any info on his wrestling credentials?

If we take MMA back five years, then he would a very dangerous prospect.
Transitioning to MMA now is very difficult and takes years to be well rounded. I say give the guy time because learning BJJ and MMA strategy is not his only worry. A big one is adjusting his standup to MMA, this will take time especially his natural boxing instincts like footwork and standing body movement.
I would though feel sorry for any MMA fighter who tries to box with him. He has a win over Yuri Foreman which is impressive.
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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EDIT: Sorry double post
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Old 06-07-2012, 09:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Don$ukh View Post
It states he was a state wrestler but anyone got any info on his wrestling credentials?

If we take MMA back five years, then he would a very dangerous prospect.
Transitioning to MMA now is very difficult and takes years to be well rounded. I say give the guy time because learning BJJ and MMA strategy is not his only worry. A big one is adjusting his standup to MMA, this will take time especially his natural boxing instincts like footwork and standing body movement.
I would though feel sorry for any MMA fighter who tries to box with him. He has a win over Yuri Foreman which is impressive.
He said he first got into boxing when he was training for MMA, he figured he could make a career just using his hands. He said he was a kickboxer aswell, so I think he will have little trouble in adapting to MMA striking.

I'm sure Kanto would be able to dig something up about his wrestling background.
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Old 06-08-2012, 04:53 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The question is, did he keep training his wrestling and kickboxing while he was boxing professionally?

Either way, colour me interested.
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Old 06-08-2012, 10:22 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Soojooko View Post
The question is, did he keep training his wrestling and kickboxing while he was boxing professionally?

Either way, colour me interested.
This, I'm intrigued. Any time a high level boxer talks of transitioning over, I wonder how seriously he's taking the training. This article seems to exemplify that aspect. I'll be very keen to keep an eye on this guy. Especially if he trains for a Dos Santos type of style, keeping the fight in your strength.
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Old 06-08-2012, 11:09 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Really interested to see how high level boxers transition into MMA, he seems to have aligned himself with the right people but I'd like to see how he reacts when he eats a hard leg kick or how he fights off his back.
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Old 06-08-2012, 11:32 AM   #8 (permalink)
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He'll be a journeyman but fortunately he has a good chin so adjusting to the striking in MMA will not be as big of a deal as it is for some...especially a lot of MT converts who you see get knocked out. (Edson Barboza).
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Old 06-08-2012, 02:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I don't know how well Wolak does. As for his boxing, he's a brawler from what I seen and can take a punch.
Vic Darchinyan was supposed to go to MMA too
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