Despite Distractions, Horodecki Focused Heading into PFC Bout
While most of Canada was eating turkey and visiting relatives they couldn’t stand for Thanksgiving, Ontario’s Chris Horodecki was tucked away in a training camp which could prove to be one of the most pivotal of his young career.
On October 26, Horodecki will headline a show in front of his hometown fans of London, Ontario for the newly founded Provincial Fighting Championships (PFC). His late replacement opponent is Bellator veteran Frank Caraballo, who could prove to be an even more dangerous foe than the originally scheduled Jason Dent.
Missing a few hearty meals and awkward family interactions sits just fine with Horodecki, who has made the trek to Montreal’s Tri-Star gym in search of something missing.
The one time thrilling prospect and IFL championship contender has found himself at a career crossroads. Unable to put together more than two straight wins since 2007 and only having won one of his last four fights, Horodecki is looking to find the spark that has been missing since the death of longtime friend and trainer Shawn Tompkins.
“I used to do my camps in Las Vegas. When Tompkins was alive, I’d go to Vegas for five or six weeks at a time. With the passing of Shawn (Tompkins), I’ve kind of stayed back a bit in London, mixed up my training with Jeff Curran in Chicago. I think it’s important for me as one of the owners of the gym to get out of there. You’re so accessible with friends and family. I really wanted to take myself away from it all. There’s posters all over the city. Everybody’s talking about it.”
Now in his third camp at Tri-Star, Horodecki believes he is growing as a grappler and a fighter to new levels he simply could not reach at his own gym. Training with some of the world’s best fighters and coaches has only improved him as a competitor.
“I’ve surrounded myself with good people. Working with Firas (Zahabi) here, he’s excellent. I tell him who we’re fighting and he’ll give me the breakdown. He’ll strategize my sparring sessions for what I should be working on and drilling. I’ve got Kru Ash, my Thai coach. He kind of does the same thing. John Chaimberg, our conditioning sessions are second to none. He pushes us hard. I’ve been working with Matt Miller and he’s been helping us out with our wrestling game.”
News broke last week that Horodecki, along with a long list of other Canadian talent, had signed with World Series of Fighting Canada and would make his debut in December. For some, this could make focusing on the upcoming bout at PFC a challenge, but Horodecki is an eight year professional and is familiar with the dangers of not taking a fight seriously.
“You have to approach every opponent like you’re fighting Hercules. Motivation has never been a problem for me. I take my sport very seriously and my training very seriously. I want to put on a show for everyone.”
Although his originally scheduled bout for PFC was at a 150 lb. catchweight, he suggests his future fights will take place in the Featherweight division.
“I think it’s a natural transition. You learn more the harder you train. These guys at 155 are just humongous. These guys fighting in the big shows are enormous. It’s a good transition for me. Featherweight is where I want to be at.”
With a hometown bout this weekend and World Series of Fighting around the corner, Horodecki appears to be in a good place for the first time in a while. Taking part in training camps that are focused on his improvement with talented fighters that are pushing him to be better will only further his already extensive skill set.
Only 26, Horodecki is a rare mix of experience and youth. He is an established veteran who has yet to reach his physical peak. A win this weekend over Carabello will mark two in a row and put him one step closer to fulfilling the potential Canadian fans have been talking about for years.