Shane Kruchten is back in action this Friday Night At Bellator 219, facing former Bellator Featherweight Champion Daniel Straus in the co-main event of the evening.
The lightweight is coming off of a loss to Aaron Pico, which sent Kruchten to a dark place, but he has now returned from that downward spiral.
“I was in a dark spot,” Kruchten told MMA Junkie. “I was too much limelight-hungry, if you would. I was all about me, me, me. And the loss pushed me into a dark place with my PTSD I already suffer from, from the military. It pushed me into a deep depression. The loss kind of put a cherry on top of my downfall, my self-demise. But, at the same time, it opened my eyes in ways I could have never imagined. I’ve spoken to Aaron since then. I was in his locker room in San Jose. I went in there and shook his dad’s hand. I shook his hand, congratulated him on his win and just thanked him. He’s a great kid. I wish nothing but the best, and I see a bright future. At the end of the day, we were opponents, and there’s no animosity between me and him. He took the best of me that night, and it is what it is.”
Kruchten hasn’t competed since that loss to Pico, which took place at Bellator 192 in January of 2018.
A returning Kruchten also credits his fiance for helping get the fighter out of that dark place.
“She told me, ‘Listen, if you don’t pull your head out of your rear-end, you’re going to die alone. And nobody’s going to back you,’” Kruchten said. “’You’ve got the best backing in the world; you need to cease the moment and go with it.’ And I really took that to heart.”
Bellator 219 takes place on Friday, March 29 from the Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, California with Saad Awad and Brandon Girtz headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, which airs live on the Paramount Network.