Picture this.

Over the past five months, your life has changed in ways that you never would have imagined. On the back of an exciting debut in the UFC in your hometown, a highlight-reel knockout victory introduced fans all over the world to “The Aussie Gangster” or Benny ”Blanco” Alloway, as you are officially known. Having just one UFC fight to your name, true to your form, you are eager to showcase your skills for mixed martial arts fans all over the world once again.

Your second appearance in the UFC is coming up and fighting professionally for a living truly is you living out your dream. A newborn son, named Chael, has turned your life upside down in a good (and sometimes extremely hard) way, and everything just seems to be working out.

Cue the disaster.

Alloway (top) (Scott Clark/Sherdog)

“Three days before I flew out and 12 days before the fight, I was just doing one of my final sparring sessions with Dylan [Andrews] and he went to take me down. I sprawled and my knee buckled and my ankle kinda got caught,” Alloway revealed in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “It was almost like the same kind of pressure you’d get from a toe hold.

“I did think about not fighting, but I didn’t wanna be that guy that pulled out so close to the fight. It was my second fight with the UFC and I felt a little bit of added pressure. I thought that I was acting like a professional by fighting when in reality I wasn’t. I was a little bit too arrogant, and I didn’t think it’d make a difference. It was a tough learning experience for me, and it is something that I will never do again.”

It would have been easy to come out and use the injury as an excuse as to why he lost, but Alloway kept his misfortunes to himself and has instead looked towards his future as opposed to dwelling on the past. His third appearance in the Octagon is set for Aug. 28 against The Ultimate Fighter: Team Jones vs. Team Sonnen alum Zak Cummings.

“I am a lot more relaxed going into this one. I am healthier now, and the nerves are definitely gone now,” he admitted. “I am really looking forward to fighting again. Three months without a fight feels like forever for me. It’s a pretty long period of time for me, and I have been focusing on keeping the intensity up and trying to keep focused on the fight and not all the rest of the stuff that goes with it.

“I think that this time my takedown defense is going to be a lot better, considering I couldn’t really move as much as I usually do in the last fight. You’ll certainly see a difference.”

Alloway (Scott Clark/Sherdog)

Alloway is no stranger to performance bonuses. He secured a “Fight of the Season” bonus through his participation on The Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes and won a “Knockout of the Night” bonus in his UFC debut. When people were talking about doing away with the fight-night bonuses in lieu of a pay increase many months ago, Alloway made his opinions quite clear and also promised another bonus-worthy performance for his upcoming fight.

“I’m all for bonuses,” he said. “When you look at it, if [the UFC] were to take away the bonuses, we’d only really see an extra few thousand in the low-mid tier. With the bonuses, you have the potential of earning tens of thousands of dollars. It certainly helped me and my family, so I am all for them and I am all for chasing them as well.”

Looking back at what was, Alloway is the first to admit that no matter how you view it, he didn’t fight a great fight in Sweden. He knows that there is nothing that can justify the loss, but at the same time he realizes that with every setback comes a whole new learning experience.

“Every time I have fought when I am healthy, something exciting has happened,” he noted. “My last fight was just a boring fight. I was lucky that the UFC gave me another chance, because after that performance I probably should have been cut. I plan to get back in there and show everybody that I deserved that second chance, and I am going to do something that people are going to really remember me by all over again.”

Life always has its fair share of ups and downs, and it’s quite clear that no matter how you look at it, Alloway’s showing in Sweden was one of the most significant downs of his career.

From a fan’s perspective, a fighter is only as good as their last fight. Every time that Alloway thinks back to that fateful night in Sweden, he is reminded of just how bad he must have looked. That alone is something that has made him want to ensure that disaster doesn’t strike for him inside the Octagon ever again.

Benny would like to thank Tapout, BIG W Australia, Planet Max, as well as Marc Fiore and Vince Perry, along with his training partners at PUMMA. Follow Alloway on Twitter: @bennyblancomma

Top Photo: Ben Alloway (Ryan O’Leary/Sherdog)

About The Author

Staff Writer, Australia

Located in Queanbeyan, New South Wales, Neil Rooke has been writing about the sport of MMA since 2011. In the past, Neil has written for Cage Junkies and has written for Fight! Magazine as well as Fist! Fight Magazine. Neil is also a regular contributor to Fight! Magazine Australia and Yahoo! Sports Singapore.