Leaving Injury and Anxiety Behind, Loiseau Returns Following Year Absence
David “the Crow” Loiseau has had a long and fruitful career – one that’s seen him duke it out with the likes of Jorge Rivera, Mike Swick, the late Evan Tanner, and even Rich Franklin for the UFC Middleweight title. Currently in his twelfth year as a professional mixed martial artist, Loiseau is no longer a part of the UFC, but he is far from ready to hang up his gloves. On October 6, the Tristar Gym representative will return to action against Christopher McNally at CES MMA in Providence, Rhode Island. Now a mere three days away from his scheduled scrap, Loiseau agreed to speak with Top MMA News.
“I’m in tremendous shape. I have been training really hard for this fight. We’ll be ready,” Loiseau said of his preparations for the bout.
While McNally might not have the same name recognition as some of Loiseau’s past opponents, Loiseau says he is well-aware of his opponent’s best weapons.
“He goes for submissions a lot, he likes to grapple. But we’re ready to fight; we’re ready to counter everything he has,” he said. “You have to respect everything about your opponent. Don’t fear it, but respect it. I respect the strengths of my opponent and everything he brings to the table. I’m just prepared for everything.”
When Loiseau returns to action this weekend, it will be the first time he will compete since he captured the Tachi Palace Fights Middleweight belt in February 2011. This atypically long layoff, he says, was due to a complicated surgery he underwent following his last fight.
“It was a small surgery; a meniscus surgery, but there were complications that slowed recovery. There was a lot of inflammation on my knee and I could not start training for awhile. It took me about eight months to get back to normal. I wanted to be 100 percent before [I fought again], and here I am, 100 percent.” Even with such a long hiatus from the sport behind him, Loiseau is not worried that he will be affected by ring-rust.
“Before my Tachi Palace fight I was out for almost a year as well. I train with high-level guys, so they keep me in the game.” Ring-rust or not, however, the Middleweight says he has dearly missed competition in his absence from the sport.
“Of course, it’s been hard. It’s hard to not train, but it gave me a lot of time to reflect on my career and what needs to be done to reach the top, to get back and be the top dog in the division.” And while he is vocal about his yearning to return to the top, “the Crow” still prefers to focus on the short-term, giving priority to the immediate task ahead.
“What I want is to take it one fight at a time and never look past my opponent and past the fight ahead of me. Of course I have long-term goals, but right now all I’m thinking about is my fight at CES MMA against Chris McNally. I want to be the best I can be, and become the best fighter I can be—we’ll see where that [mindset] takes me.” Still, Loiseau has not forgotten his duties as the reigning Tachi Palace Fights Middleweight champion, and he still plans to defend his belt in the near future.
“They [Tachi Palace Fights] gave me an opportunity for a title shot, and I’m very grateful for that. But for my first fight back, I got a good offer from CES MMA, and Tachi Palace gave me permission to fight outside [the promotion].”
With an important fight on the horizon, and a championship belt in a well-respected promotion to his name, Loiseau is ready to move on with his career. He is a reinvigorated, hungry athlete, who seems to have moved passed the anxiety issues that plagued him in the past—issues that he believes he has beaten.
“I just needed to do a lot of research. There’s no magic cure, you know. I did a lot of research and a lot of soul searching. You need to find your own answers, and find out what works for you and what will help you. I don’t think everything will ever be 100 percent, but there are ways to work with it.” With a new understanding of how to cope with this obstacle, Loiseau says he is “absolutely” feeling better.
Primed to re-enter the MMA scene, the Crow is ready to take flight again. The competitive fire still burns in the 32-year-old, and he says his love for the sport will keep him competing for the foreseeable future.
“Man, I love it more now than I did before. Before, I was kind of a striker that wanted to avoid the ground game and just strike. Now, over the past few years, I’ve focused on embracing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and embracing wrestling. There’s so much to learn, and I just love this game. I love the fight game.” As for the next step in his exciting career—his fight against McNally on October 6—Loiseau promises excitement from the opening bell.
“Expect a fight,” he says. “Fans in Rhode Island and everyone watching on pay-per-view: the Crow will always bring excitement to the cage.”