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Vicente Luque says pandemic didn’t affect his UFC 249 training much: ‘Between 80 and 90% ready’

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MMA training camps are already difficult enough, but having to go through them during a global pandemic like the coronavirus can certainly complicate things. It was not much of an ordeal for UFC welterweight Vicente Luque, though.

The social distancing orders and the highly contagious virus did not seem to be that big of an obstacle ahead of Luque’s rematch against Niko Price at UFC 249. In an interview with Ag Fight, the ‘Silent Assassin’ claims he will be almost in 100% shape for the May 9 fight.

Originally scheduled to take on Randy Brown on April 18, Luque had to travel back to Brazil once the card was postponed because of the pandemic. However, Vicente hopped on the next plane back to the USA when he discovered he was moved to the event’s new card, on May 2.

“It was pretty rushed, but in the end, I don’t think it affected that much. I lost two days of training, one when I left (the USA) and another one when I came back. But nothing affected me that much. Because of the circumstances, I knew that could happen. I had the intention to fight on April 18. The card got cancelled, but I knew there was that possibility. So I came back to Brasilia to be with my family, but I kept on training. I wanted to be ready as soon as the UFC called. They called me for the May 9 card. I was feeling well, I’ve been training well, even if the circumstances don’t favor me. I’ve been able to stay pretty ready. Pretty close to what I usually do.”

“I think that I’ll be between 80 and 90% out of 100, with 100 being a perfect camp.” Luque continued. “So I’ll be pretty close to where I usually get. It can’t be the same, especially when it comes to training in a group, which can’t happen at the moment. But my coaches told me everything I should do, they called me, we had video calls. I focused a lot on my physical training, I think that’s a major part of fighting. You need to have good cardio to fight for three rounds. I ran on the streets a lot, I did a lot of sprinting to maintain my cardio at a high level. That’s basically the way I could find to keep training.”

In his last outing, Luque (17-7-1) dropped a unanimous decision to former title challenger Stephen Thompson, in November 2019. The loss snapped a six-fight winning streak for the 28-year-old, with victories over notable names, such as Mike Perry, Niko Price and Bryan Barberena, among others.

Now, Luque is expected to rematch Price at UFC 249, on May 9, in Jacksonville, Florida. The card is scheduled to be headlined by an interim lightweight title fight between Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje.

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