Blog post

Legacy Fighting Alliance 39 – Maycee Barber

By Lance Edwards

 

Maycee Barber (3-0) has been getting a lot of attention and is hotly tipped as a future star of MMA. At LFA 31, she submitted Kaila Thompson (1-2) in just thirty-one seconds. Barber returns at LFA 39 to face Audrey Perkins (1-0). A win for Barber would bring her to a four-fight win streak and garnish her with more attention.

Barber was due to fight Mallory Martin last fight, but her opponent pulled from the fight before;

“The fight with Kaila was a replacement fight. It went really quick. I’m not going to complain about being able to go in there and do what I wanted to do, but she wasn’t ready. I’m thankful that she stepped up and am happy I won the fight.”

On May 4th, Barber faces her next opponent Perkins;

“I trained with her a little bit. I don’t remember when I was training with her though. She fought as an amateur and pro and then disappeared. I don’t know what she has been doing since. There’s no film of her except four years back. My coaches and I have looked at her tendencies; you tend to keep those unless you have a good coach who can change them. In terms of her skills and where she’s at, I don’t know.”

Ryan Schultz has been a long time coach of Berber, but she has recently made an addition to her team;

“I added Matt Peña from Utah as my striking coach. I started working with him two and a half months ago, he’s a good coach. He has the time to put in with me and has coached five UFC champions.”

Peña is probably best known as Robbie Lawler’s striking coach and worked with a number of the Miletich Fighting Systems fighters. In addition, Barber works with Scott Synold from Training for Warriors for her strength and conditioning needs. An area Barber has worked on is her nutrition and weight cutting with George Lockhart and Ian Larios;

“My weight cut has gone really good. I was nervous but this has been the easiest one for me. I put on more muscle for this fight and lost a little fat. I’m the same weight but changed my body composition.”

Barber was born and raised Colorado and started training martial arts at an early age. At just three years old, she started karate. Some years later, her family owned and runs Fort Collins Martial Arts & Gracie Jiu Jitsu Fort Collins;

“Karate is a different game than MMA, but it’s really done nothing but help me. Karate is where my body knows how to move from. I don’t know anything different. I didn’t pick up a lot of bad habits that hold me back. If you are a well-rounded athlete, you can pick up good things and get rid of bad habits. For example, in Muay Thai people will often lift their leg continuously to check. That’s something you don’t want to do instinctively all the time in MMA.”

Between this fight and her previous fight, Barber feels she has continued to grow and improve as a fighter;

“I’ve improved everything, my strength, striking, wrestling and positioning. I’m becoming more of a professional fighter rather than a semi-professional fighter. I’m more of a complete athlete. You have to be dedicated in everything, whether it’s strength, your mind or eating. The one thing I have changed the most is the why of doing things. Why am I putting my foot there? Why am I lifting like this? Would it be better to lift a different way? I’m always looking at the reason for doing things a particular way, and understanding what I’m doing.”

There is a danger that young fighters rush their early career and don’t build up progressively in terms of their opponent’s skill level and becoming overwhelmed with changes;

“I feel right where we are is perfect. I’m planning on things coming quickly. That’s what happens when your career takes off. It can be overwhelming thinking about things in the future too much, but taking one thing at a time it’s ok. If you look three fights ahead, that’s when you might lead yourself down a bad path. I look at the task for each day, today I’m cutting, that day I’m weighing in, that day I’m fighting and just focus on what I have to do today.”