The agony of defeat is a tough pill to swallow for any Mixed Martial Arts competitor. With so much riding on the line, no fighter steps inside the cage with the intent to lose. All that sacrifice, preparing, financial stability, career plan, and even a competitor’s identity, can be crushed as an opponent has no hesitation of derailing one’s desired goals. Luckily it’s not the end of the world, as there is always another day to fight in an effort to gain back what was once lost.

Heading down his road to redemption, Bubba “Highlight Kid” Jenkins (8-2) is focused on showcasing to the world his superiority in Bellator MMA’s featherweight division. Riding off a four fight win-streak, Jenkins’ highlight reel performances firmly established his rising status in the company.

Yet things don’t always go according to the plan, as a devastating first round submission loss to Georgri Karakhayan at Bellator 132 put a halt in his ascent to the top. Reflecting back on the encounter, Jenkins admits there were a lot of key errors that contributed to the loss.

“I made a lot of mistakes in the fight against Georgi, “Jenkins told The MMA Corner. I (didn’t) follow through with my game plan and relied too much on my wrestling, which cost me. The fight definitely opened up my eyes on areas in my game that I need to work on.”

Using the defeat as a learning tool, Jenkins has amped up his training working endlessly for future success. The goal of becoming a well-rounded competitor has been the focus of his training since that loss. With wrestling as his combat sports foundation, by adding more striking and submission grappling skills to his arsenal, Jenkins is prepared to take the fight wherever it goes.

“Since Bellator 132 I have been working more on becoming well rounded. I’ve been incorporating my wrestling with striking and just working on my timing so I won’t rush into things during a match.”

Jenkins mental outlook and physical development couldn’t be any better right now. Looking to bounce back from previous defeat, Jenkins is focused on his next fight. The Highlight Kid’s next challenge will be on June 26, against Joe Wilk (18-10) at Bellator 139. Like Jenkins, Wilk is recovering from a first round loss to Ricky Mustgrave at Bellator 130.

Two fighters with a burning desire to redeem themselves only creates the elements of an explosive match for fight fans. Yet with so much at stakes, Jenkins is confident in his ability to come out victorious over Wilk.

“My strategy is to stay on top, take my time, and most importantly follow through with the game plan.”

When someone experiences a tumble, their true character is revealed by how they pick themselves up. A new and improved fighter, Bubba Jenkins is ready to showcase this new transformation. It’s all a part of the process, as his assured upcoming victory looks to be a small piece of the puzzle of what he is looking forward to in MMA.

About The Author

Monta Wiley
Staff Writer

Monta Wiley is an aspiring sports journalist that has covered the world of MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He has been a regular contributor to US Combat Sports. Monta has a Bachelor's degree in Aviation Administration from California State University-Los Angeles. Outside of his writing, you can find Monta at the gym honing his BJJ technique.