TikTok coach? Marvin Vettori suffered another loss two weekends ago at the hands of Jared Cannonier at UFC Vegas 75, and now his training decisions are being questioned. While he did take home a $50K bonus for Fight of the Night, ‘The Italian Dream’ nonetheless went through a five-round beating, absorbing 249 of Cannonier’s record-setting significant strikes along the way.
Based on that performance, training partner Sean Strickland recently spoke with the media to point out some possible reasons for Marvin Vettori’s recent performance.
Marvin Vettori’s ‘TikTok coach’
Speaking to the media during the UFC Vegas media scrum on Wednesday, Strickland blamed Marvin Vettori’s decision to train with “TikTok coach” Dewey Cooper ahead of the Cannonier fight. Among Cooper’s list of notable protégés include Kevin Lee, TUF alum Roy Nelson, and former champions Cody Garbrandt and Francis Ngannou.
Strickland, however, isn’t impressed by the “TikTok coach,” as a mentor and former fighter.
“Dewey f—ng Cooper. And I like Dewey Cooper. I think Dewey Cooper is a stand-up f—ng guy. He’s a great guy. But Dewey Cooper, this f—ng guy… Marvin went to Vegas — and I wanted Marvin to come to Vegas so bad.
“Right when he got to Vegas, he got in bed with Dewey Cooper. I don’t know if you guys follow Dewey Cooper is like the TikTok coach. He’s the guy that’s like ‘Alright, you guys. I’m gonna have a speech! Everybody settle down, give me a camera!’
“He wasn’t a great kickboxer… man, I’m gonna have to f—ng have to fight this guy when I see him now. He wasn’t a great kickboxer. He wasn’t good at all. If you look at his record, it’s all f—ng red.”
Strickland says he isn’t understanding the hype behind Cooper while putting the current social media generation on blast.
“But for some reason, this f—ng man has a stable of fighters. And he’s like a glorified cardio kickboxing coach. And I just don’t understand how… and this is what I’m f—ng talking about with you Instagram f—ks and you TikToker, you younger generation. It’s so easy to be a fraudulent motherf—r.
“The issue with Marvin is he went, and he went to Dewey Cooper’s cardio kickboxing. And he’s just been smashing pads. He’s not getting better, he’s not improving.”
Strickland’s career advice for Marvin Vettori
Strickland (26-5) has done well for himself as a full-time Xtreme Couture fighter. The always-controversial 32-year-old comfortably sits at the number seven spot on the rankings and did well in his light heavyweight debut in January to break a two-fight skid.
He believes Marvin Vettori could benefit from a full camp switch.
“Marvin needs someone to break him down, to bring out f—ng coloring book to say, ‘Alright, Marvin. This is what you gotta do,’” Strickland said.
“I really think after this fight, maybe he sees the light, and now he just goes full-time Xtreme. ‘Cause now, he’s not an Xtreme fighter. He may spar with us once or twice, but he’s not an extreme fighter. And the moment he finally sacks the f—k up and puts somebody in a position of authority.
For Strickland, Marvin Vettori needs a coach who would provide that push.
“Marvin’s a kind of guy that he needs to worship you. He needs to be like, ‘you’re in a position of authority.’ I know Marvin… he got a little beat up. I think there’s a bright future for Marvin, and I think he just needs to have better leadership and he works his f—ng ass off.
“I think he has a bright future, he just needs better people driving the short bus.”
Marvin Vettori promises a strong comeback
For his part, the 29-year-old Vettori isn’t deterred by his loss to Cannonier. In a post-fight statement on social media, he promised to bounce back stronger.
“A lion remains a lion. Spirit was never broken. I’ll be back stronger, I promise you that,” he wrote on Instagram.
Vettori’s current record stands at 19-7-1.
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