Much has happened since Mike Perry’s most recent match. Perry ended his short yet well-known marriage to Danielle Nickerson. He went on to fire the coaches and cornermen that have been by his side for his fights. Not only did he begin a romantic relationship with a new woman, Latory Gonzalez, but he also named her as his lone cornerman for his next match. Recently he posted a video on social media that showed him with blood on his face and knuckles. Perry (13-6) didn’t give an explanation about how his minor injuries happened but assured that he would be more than ready to fight. On top of that, Perry has gone 2-5 in his most recent fights.
With all the craziness surrounding Mike Perry, many fans speculate on whether he is making the right decisions for his career. In many ways, this article is a bit more like a gossip column with a little bit of evidence to back it up. Either way, this information has moved through the fight world about what exactly is going on within his camp. Before I continue, I must point out many things have traveled around are RUMORS and not definitive facts being stated with dates, evidence, and exact knowledge of motives.
With that being said, there are two sides to every story and the circumstances behind Perry’s fight camp are no different. Once again….. these are RUMORS.
Mike Perry’s side
Many of Perry’s complaints could be justified. His grievances for firing his coaching staff to corner him mention that he “feels like he’s never gotten advice.” As Perry would say “they don’t even know what the (expletive) to say because they wouldn’t go in there and do what the (expletive) they’re talking about.” If true, these are legitimate concerns that would irritate a fighter. If cornermen can’t help and give sufficient advice in between rounds, it’s going to be hard to make the necessary adjustments in an evolving fight. Especially, if you’re in a high level fight competition and you have an inexperienced corner.
A post shared by Platinum Mike Perry (@platinummikeperry) on Jun 19, 2020 at 9:36pm PDT
In general, it’s really difficult for people who fight or even otherwise to find a gym that has a desirable atmosphere and coaches that challenge as they expand a person’s knowledge. Fighters can feel stagnant if it seems like they’re not learning or improving as a fighter. Also, creativity and adjusting techniques to a fighter’s personal style. Hence Perry’s comment about “wanting to hold mitts for himself.”
At this point in time, Perry’s frustration has led to believing that his current girlfriend would serve better as a cornermen than his past coaches. “All I need the corner for is to pass me the bottle of water.”
The Coach’s side
Fusion XL is a martial arts/ fitness gym in Ocoee, Florida that acts as a stable for a few high-level fighters. This stable includes head coach Julian Williams, Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, Hannah Goldy, Alan Patrick, Rodolfo “Black Belt Hunter” Vieira, and Phil “Fresh Prince” Rowe. From the outside looking in, there seems to be a strong and diverse population of fighters under Fusion’s roof.
For those who have known Perry for a long time, the news of him having his girlfriend as a lone cornerman is not a big surprise when it comes to his behavior. The video Perry recently posted on his Instagram with his face and knuckles bloodied is more of a repeat incident. It’s said that the walls of Fusion XL a couple of holes due to Perry punching and head butting those walls in frustration. At times his coaches have stopped him from making more holes. Although, it’s not certain why or where he damaged his forehead and knuckles.
A post shared by Platinum Mike Perry (@platinummikeperry) on Jun 18, 2020 at 9:32am PDT
Perry is also no stranger to drama. While in a relationship with now ex-wife, Danielle Nickerson, there were moments that showed a fighter that sought emotional support from their better half. Danielle, or formerly known as “Platinum Princess,” would often be seen with Mike Perry accompanying him on his walk into the Octagon while dancing to the beat of whatever is blaring from the speakers. Now, the people who usually walk with Perry to the arena, including Danielle, will not be present, and anything on Perry’s Instagram that had Danielle’s likeness are gone.
From the perspective of the guys at Fusion XL, that might be a good thing. Old training partners described Platinum Perry and the Platinum Princess as a toxic couple at times. Diego “Nightmare” Sanchez mentioned that he even tried to “warn him in a kind loving way” about the possible consequences of marrying a person like Nickerson. Both Sanchez and Frank Lester cited Nickerson’s selfishness and desire to ride Perry’s wave of fame in the UFC. On occasion, Danielle would say extremely negative and toxic things in the heat of an argument. According to his teammates, the type of things you don’t say to a fighter. Especially right before a fight.
Throughout Perry’s time at Fusion XL, his coaches wanted to instill some basic concepts that he skipped over throughout his years of training. This might explain why it seemed like his coaches kept things rudimentary and not super creative. Often fighters can complain about what looks like a mundane repetition of the same basic movements and techniques—not realizing that sometimes a mastery over simple things can mean a massive advantage in the ring or cage.
The Fight at Hand
Despite the corner situation of Mike Perry, he will be facing off against a dangerous prospect in Mickey Gall (6-2) to co-headline the ESPN card on June 27th. Gall first found himself fighting in the UFC against Mike “The Truth” Jackson for the chance to fight WWE star CM Punk. After defeating both opponents, Gall went on to win three of his next five fights including victories over George Sullivan, Salomon Touahri, and Sage Northcutt. A win over another big like Perry’s would give Gall the much-needed momentum that he’s been trying to recapture since 2016.
A post shared by Platinum Mike Perry (@platinummikeperry) on Jun 12, 2020 at 12:53pm PDT
This matchup could either be a huge meal for a hungry Mickey Gall or a good bounce back for the always entertaining Mike Perry. Perhaps due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the exclusivity of the UFC APEX arena is a perfect setting for Latory Gonzalez to her feet wet with being a cornerman. Fighting with a limited amount of people in a room without fans will be a change-up for both fighters. Perry has enlisted different people to help him fight preparation in pursuit of doing things his way. Hopefully, Perry has made a sound decision with whoever might be passing him water and ice in between rounds for Saturday’s co-main event.■
The main card will air on ESPN and ESPN + at 7 pm Central time while the preliminary card will begin at 4 pm Central time.