At 25 years old, soon to be 26, Johnny “Hollywood” Case has made a very good case for himself to be a legitimate contender in the lightweight division in the UFC.

Standing at 20-4 in his professional mixed martial arts career, Case has shown that he means business inside the cage. However, it was not something that started how you would dream your professional career to start. Case started out 0-2 and was finished in both of the fights, one by KO and one by submission.

“I got into fighting because I wrestled my whole life and I like competitive sports,” Case told The MMA Corner. “I did not want to wrestle in college so I got into fighting. I lost my first two fights and went 0-2. I was in the sport for the wrong reasons and was not real serious with my training. I knew I was talented and I was not training the right way. I was not doing the things that a professional athlete needed to do. I was partying, drinking, and eating bad. That is why I was 0-2. I was not doing things the right way, but I knew that if I did things the right way, I was talented and could make a go at this sport.”

The 0-2 start to Case’s career let him reflect and see what he was doing wrong. Case, being the world-class professional athlete he now is, understood what was wrong and made it right.

“After starting 0-2, I decided to take the sport more serious, and start training the correct way,” said Case explaining his career turnaround. “I went on an eight-fight win streak until I lost my next fight. I then won two more until I lost my last fight when I was twenty years old and I have not lost since. I am really focused on putting my heart and soul into this sport and training. Now I leave it all out there on fight night.”

Case talked about the run he went on after he took his first two losses. He also talked about his last loss, which was October 22, 2010, and how it helped him grow as a fighter.

“I really grew into a man,” Case said. “I was dominating the fight against Rick Glenn, but I was fouled. I got eye-poked and the referee did not stop the fight. He was not a very skilled ref. It just showed me that there is nothing to worry about. You have to go out there and let it all hang out. If you go out there and try to fight safe, you know, something can happen anyways. It is really out of your hands. The only thing you can really control is putting your time in the gym and going out there and fighting 100%. That loss to him really showed me that even when you do the right things, you do not always come up with a win. You got to worry about yourself and doing your best.”

Case’s new mindset and lessons he learned from his last loss dating back to 2010 worked wonders for him. Since that loss, Case has won his last ten fights, with two of them in the UFC. Case talked about his 2-0 record in the UFC.

“It feels great to be 2-0 in the UFC,” Case explained. “I remember when I started setting my goals to make it in the UFC. I never just said, ‘I want to make it to the UFC.’ My goal was that I wanted to win a fight in the UFC. I did just that and won a Performance of the Night bonus. That showed me that I belong in the UFC. I had all the confidence in the world going into my second fight in the UFC. I went out there and did what I knew I could do.”

Already 2-0 in the UFC, Case will be looking to improve his UFC record to 3-0 when he faces Francisco Trevino at UFC 188. Trevino is undefeated, with his professional record at 12-0. Trevino and Case were scheduled to fight once before, but the fight was called off and then rebooked.

“After the fight in Boston, he pulled out because of an injury…apparently…and then he had the balls to call me out and say that he was going to out strike me and all of this sh-t,” Case said. “Meanwhile, he was the one who pulled out of the fight so it got under my skin. We went back and forth on twitter and then finally got the fight signed for Mexico City. I could not be happier because nothing motivates me more than someone talking shit. It makes me want to train that much harder and work that much harder to go out there and prove him wrong.”

If I was a professional fighter, I think that talking “sh-t” to Johnny Case before I fought him would be one of the last things I did. “Hollywood” backs up his nickname inside the cage because whenever he is in there, you are always going to get something special. Of his twenty wins, eighteen of them are finishes, with twelve KO/TKO’s and eight submissions. Johnny “Hollywood” Case finishes fights and making him even more motivated is a bad idea. I asked Johnny about his finishing ability inside the Octagon.

“Hell yeah,” Case said. “When I think about the sport of MMA, I do not think about it as a sport that I am going out there just to do enough to win. I am trying to finish the fight. I am trying to hurt the guy, knock him out, and make him go unconscious. I think that is the reason behind my fights. I am not out there as a sportsman trying to score here and there. There is strategy in fighting and sometimes you need to do that, but at the end of the day, I am looking for the kill.”

Look for Case to be looking for the finish when he takes on Trevino at 8PM/5PM ETPT on FX at UFC 188 on June 13, 2015.

About The Author

Jeremy Klump
Interview Coordinator / Video Manager

Jeremy Klump is a Sport Media major at Ithaca College and has been writing about Mixed Martial Arts for over a year now. He interned at MVC Sports Management and AMA Fight Club. While interning at MVC and AMA, Jeremy found out that he had a true passion for writing about Mixed Martial Arts. He has interviewed and wrote articles on top UFC fighters while also having knowledge of regional fighters and the top new comers. He looks to grow as a writer and expand his knowledge of Mixed Martial Arts while being a proud member of The MMA Corner team.