Griphouse representative, Reece McEwan, is thriving with confidence ahead of making his much anticipated Cage Warriors debut. A monumental milestone in any fighter’s career.
Cage Warriors makes Manchester their home for this coming weekend, and matchmaker Ian Dean has put together an exceptional fight card that will feature across the promotions doubler header event that falls on Friday and Saturday at the BEC Arena.
Reece McEwan will be among the action at Cage Warriors 136 and meets Sam Spencer in a Scotland vs. England bantamweight clash. McEwan is looking to catapult himself back into the winning bracket after facing a small bump in the road in his last outing.
We had the pleasure of speaking with McEwan to get his thoughts on his upcoming fight and Cage Warriors as a promotion.
Interview With Reece McEwan
It’s fight week and a huge fight week for yourself in such a monumental stage in your young career. Saturday night, you make your Cage Warriors debut. How are the emotions and mindset in the lead up to this one? Or does it feel like any other fight week?
I’m flying high with confidence. Mentally I’m in a very strong place. Every fight has its own unique story. I’ve enjoyed the build-up to this one, and I’m focused on putting on a show for everyone on Saturday night.
Even before signing with Cage Warriors in your last few fights, you wore the famous yellow CW gloves when competing. What was the reasoning behind doing so? Is it somewhere you knew you would end up at one stage of your career?
When I first started training, I told Dean I wanted to be in the UFC and a world champion. After his last fight, he texted me saying he “got me a present” – cage warriors needed to take his gloves, and he asked for a small pair in return. When I trained with him after the fight, the gloves were the present, and he said to me if I wanted to achieve being a world champion in the UFC, cage warriors was the pathway to do that. I kept them aside until I turned professional and set a goal to wear these gloves until I signed for Cage Warriors and got my own. I love when goals and dreams come true.
Privilege of Competing on Cage Warriors
What does it mean to you to get this opportunity to showcase your skill-set on a huge stage like Cage Warriors?
It’s a massive privilege. It’s been a goal of mine since day one. I’ve watched bantamweights on Cage Warriors for years and always messaged my coaches after saying how I deserve to be there and how I would’ve won that fight. I feel I’m one of the best fighters in Europe, so I’m where I feel I belong. I’ve got my chance to put my beliefs and skills to the test now.
Cage Warriors has been a hotbed for talent that has entered and then began knocking on the doors of the UFC after. You’ve often stated in previous interviews the UFC was the ultimate goal. Is that something in your head when signing, or is it tunnel vision on conquering the bantamweight division at CW first and foremost?
100%. I’ve signed a multi-fight deal with Cage Warriors. The contract gives me an opportunity to achieve my goals – be Cage Warriors world champion then UFC world champion.
Preparing Your Mind for Battle
Having spoken with you before, your mindset seems to be one of your biggest attributes. Last time out, you suffered your first loss and were back in the gym the following day. Many others would take a few weeks off. Where does that solid mindset come from? Is it something that can be trained, or do you just have it naturally?
You are a product of your environment. Positive, mentally strong individuals surround me, and their elite mindset & advice rubs off on me. When you’re faced with adversity, you can either run away from it or face it head-on. Emotions after a fight will fade away after a few days, and then you have to look at the contest objectively. I’m competing to be the best I can be, and the constant pursuit of perfection doesn’t stop for any single result. You’ll always have things to improve, win or lose. I trust the process, and I’m a much stronger, smarter version of that contest.
On Saturday night, you meet Sam Spencer, making his debut with the promotion. You’ll be fighting in his backyard and may have some of the crowd against you. Is that something you’ve ever had to deal with before, and do you have to mentally prepare for something like that to ensure you perform to the best of your ability regardless of the crowd?
I’ve fought in front of sold-out crowds supporting me, in my opponents home town, where it’s been balanced and where it’s been behind closed doors. I’ve also competed in BJJ, where not a single person has watched, and they’ve missed my match. The nerves and focus always remain the same. I want to perform to the best of my ability and win.
Before the fight, I love hearing the support on either side. The happiness from my opponent’s support is completely natural. I bet they’ll boo me, and my crowd will boo him, haha, but after the fight, we will respect each other, and everyone will be respectful, cheering after. When you enter the cage everything is blocked out, it all becomes outside noise at that point, and your shift turns to what you’re there for: to put on a strong performance and fight.
Reece McEwan Talks Sam Spencer
Your opponent Sam has been out of competition since 2019. You’ve had one amateur contest and four pro-bouts within that time frame. Do you anticipate his long-haul of inactivity to play a factor in the fight, or do you not take much from that. Is a fight a fight?
A fights a fight. Sam is a great opponent, very tough and knows how to fight. I’m excited about the match up!
If Sam Spencer is expecting the same Reece McEwan that fought on Rise and Conquer, what would you have to say to him?
I’d walk over that version of Reece McEwan. But that’s still a dangerous opponent to prepare for.
Lastly, a statement victory over Sam Spencer jumps you back into the win column. Not looking past your opponent, but have you mapped out your ideal 2022 with Cage Warriors? How soon would you be looking to get back there if injuries prevent that?
I’ve signed a multi-fight deal. I want to fight as much as I can…June 24th, Belfast.
Featured image credits to Rise and Conquer