“I was at the point financially that the efforts I was putting in, it wasn’t paying off,” Duffee said. “It didn’t make a lot of sense. You start feeling stupid after a certain amount of time, like how delusional am I? But it did pay off, and I’m excited that I’ve got things back on track.”
Now at age 27, Duffee is still the UFC's most exciting heavyweight prospect.
“In my career it’s been pretty evident that I’ve seen some of the absolute highs of the highs of this sport and I’ve also seen some of the lows of the lows,” Duffee said. “That’s everybody in this sport. If they stick around long enough and they really stick through it, that stuff’s going to happen. To sum it up, it’s been a roller coaster, but I’ve still found a way to really truly enjoy it.”
After going 1-1 outside the UFC, Duffee returned to the octagon and absolutely demolished Phil De Fries at UFC 155.
Duffee is now riding a two-fight win streak, and he's on the fast track to the top of the sport.
“I think wrestling’s a huge part of the sport, and that’s what I’ve always kind of been chasing, to get that kind of training, and I’m getting it,” Duffee said. “Obviously [AKA] is going to help me there. It’s going to help me everywhere. It’s a good camp, and the best thing about it is they’ve got great bodies in there to work with and we all work together really well.”
No word yet on who Duffee fights next in the UFC.
“The big thing, I think, [about] this time away was it hurt my development,” Duffee said. “I think I could have improved a lot more in the last two years had I not been dealing with some of the situations I had.”