Darren Elkins motivated to keep improving, aims to regain top 15


Darren Elkins has fought who’s who throughout his career, but still has the desire to keep evolving.

Elkins (25-9 MMA, 15-8 UFC) managed to break a four-fight losing skid with a well-deserved victory submission from Eduardo Garagorri in November and is looking to keep the momentum going when he meets Darrick Minner (26- 11 MMA, 2-1 UFC) at UFC on ESPN 27 Saturday.

At one point, Elkins had one of the most impressive races in the division, until he met current UFC featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski. So, with a new wave of talent at 145 pounds, the 37-year-old knows he needs to keep improving or he will be left behind.

“I just love to compete,” Elkins told MMA Junkie. “At the end of the day, I do what I love to do. I have other things I could do, I’m a union pipefitter so I have other things, other careers that I can go into, but I just love the combat lifestyle. I love the training part and I love to see how I compete with these guys. So I wake up everyday, and I know these guys are improving so I have to improve too.

“I have to change some of my training tactics and keep trying to improve. It also motivates me because you look at the game 11 years ago when I first entered it, it’s totally different. These guys are better athletes, there’s a lot more science behind it, so I’m just trying to get involved with the science as much as possible.

With a victory over submission specialist Minner, Elkins aims to restore the momentum he once had when he was an eternal contender competing with the elite.

“There are a lot of new guys, it’s exciting,” Elkins said. “All the new guys in the top 10, the top 15, and I’m just trying to get back there. I have time to get there, but I would just like to get back into the top 15 and whatever opponents take me there one by one that’s what I want to do.

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