Kendall Grove has found a home in Bellator and turned his career around.
The 33-year old Hawaiian made his name by winning the third season of the Ultimate Fighter, and went on to fight in the UFC 13 times. After being released by the company in 2011, Grove had ups and downs that included a four-fight winning streak, immediately followed by three straight losses. Since signing with Bellator MMA in 2013, Kendall Grove has won 4 of 6 fights in the company, something he says was helped out by his friendship with UFC Middleweight Champion Michael Bisping.
"That's my brother," Grove told Fightful in an exclusive interview. "He’s helped me out in so many ways and vice versa, but I’m team Bisping all the way. No disrespect to Dan, he’s a tough motherfucker. Obviously he’s been in this game forever, he’s got the brutal knockout win over Michael years ago…but 7 years a lot can happen and obviously it did. Michael’s a different fighter, a better fighter. He’s a smart fighter as well. There’s power in his hands, ask Luke Rockhold and all the other guys he’s finished, stats don’t lie."
Grove told Fightful that Bisping took him in during a low point and helped him out, both on and off the mats
"It was good man. It made me confident in my shit again. Obviously he’s a well-established middleweight in the UFC, ranked at the time, and now he’s the champ. It made me—okay I still got it. Some days I would do good, some days I would do great, some days just fucked me up and then also with the training partners he brought in and then obviously him, encouraging me with what he’s seeing, what I was doing and…like I said he just kind of revived my confidence and helped me pick up my technique in striking and then Jiu Jitsu. I got to work with Jason Carrillo a lot, got to work with Brady (inaudible), got to work with a bunch of guys out in Southern California and it led me to where I am today," Grove said.
Grove will main event Bellator 162 on Friday night as he takes on former Bellator Middleweight Champion Alexander Shlemenko. Fightful.com will have full live coverage of the event. You can hear our full interview with Grove above.
Photo courtesy of Bellator MMA