Darren Till is going through a lot of changes in his life, both professionally and personally. While his daughter is just one year old, he has decided to move up to middleweight.
Till has learned a lot from fatherhood. But the most important thing he has come to terms with is that raising kids is expensive.
“They cost a lot! [My daughter] is nearly 1 and she’s just started to walk and she’s nearly speaking”, Till told ESPN in a recent interview. “I really enjoy it [having kids]. I enjoy picturing what it’s going to be like in the next few years, but for now it’s expensive!”
Till’s unblemished professional career took a hit in his last two fights, ending his undefeated streak. Many experts blamed his weight cut to be the reason for his decline in performance. Consequently, he decided to move up a weight class.
“It was in my mind for a long time. People don’t see what goes on behind the scenes when I am cutting weight. They don’t see it’s a 24-hour thing. I was cutting weight to welterweight and it just got to the point where it had become a proper burden on my life and I wasn’t happy with what I was doing anymore,” Till said about the grueling weight cut.
“I just got to the point where I felt I was too big, and I was really putting myself under strain and it wasn’t healthy for me. Two weeks out [from his next fight] now, I’m not even thinking about the fight or cutting weight, I’m just thinking about training and how much I love it and how much I love this”, added Till.
“The Gorilla” will face Kelvin Gastelum in his 185 pounds debut. In a new division, Till couldn’t have had a better man to welcome him. Gastelum last fought against Israel Adesanya and lost a close decision. The same Adesanya would go on to knock out Robert Whittaker for the middleweight title. Therefore, a win over Gastelum could really bring back value to his stock. However, going up against such a formidable opponent in a new division is dangerous in itself.
“I know I’ve got the tools to be the best fighter in the world and beat guys like Kelvin Gastelum and the champions. So it all depends on what I do when I go in there,” said Till while discussing his next opponent. “I don’t think there is an ‘easy’ road in the UFC, but as you say, I could have taken an easier route instead of facing Kelvin, who’s just fought against Israel Adesanya, who’s now the champion. Israel knocked Robert Whittaker out, Kelvin nearly beat Israel, this is the hardest fight, but I just don’t see it as anything. I see it as: ‘This guy is so good, I know how good I am, why not fight?'”
Till vs Gastelum will be the co-main event at UFC 244 which takes place on Sun 3rd Nov at Madison Square Garden in New York.