Lightweight prospect Ty “Shortfuse” Tomlin (12-0) is preparing to take on Charlie Serrano (16-6-2) Saturday, February 5, at the Winfield Dunn Center at Austin Peay University in Clarksville, Tennessee. Tomlin is one of the fighters under contract to the DiBella Entertainment banner and Hall of Fame promoter, Lou DiBella.
While Tomlin isn't known to most yet outside of his native Tennessee, that is about to change and is one of his goals in 2022.
I had a chance to catch up with Tomlin as he is in training camp preparing to take on Serrano and had the following conversation about that fight as well as an opportunity to learn more about the fighter from Ashland City known as “Shortfuse.”
So first things first, Ty, how has training camp been?
“Training camp has been great. Been working a lot this camp with Andres Cortes and gotten some great sparring in.”
You mentioned Cortes is in this camp with you. What has been the one thing he's shown you? He's been on boxing's highlight reel lately with knockouts.
“Sparring with Cortes has been great. One thing that he has helped me with was my speed and defense this camp around. My fighting style as a pressure fighter tends to lend the belief that my defense isn't as good as it should be, and we bought in Cortes to sure up some things.”
The latest press release mentioned how you want to be the Derrick Henry of Boxing. Talk to me about the Titans' chances and why Henry?
“This is the year the Titans win the Superbowl for sure. I compared myself to Henry because of how he is so well-rounded and just able to muscle through opponents. That's what I want to do in the ring.”
I saw when you spoke with Danny Flexen at SecondsOut that you mentioned the UFC was your first love. Who did you like to watch in the octagon?
“Man. I liked Matt Hughes and Chuck Lindell. I always liked the stand-up guys.”
What do you know about Charlie Serrano? I saw him in the ring 15 years ago at the old A La Carte Pavilion back in the day.
“Haven't seen too much film on Serrano, but I know he has a good jab. I try not to watch too much film on guys. You watch to see their timing, but what you usually see on tape doesn't happen to be the same guy you see in the ring. In my last fight against Ira Terry, the video we had showed him working behind the jab, but he may have thrown three jabs in the fight we had.”
Your last fight with Ira Terry led to a pretty iconic photo and a fifth-round stoppage. Walk me back on how that all happened?
“That shot was set up with the bodywork done earlier in the fight. Ira, later on in the fight, let his hands down. I was able to get in with a quick “Shortfuse” left hook, and that was it.”
Let me go back to what you mentioned about the tape for a second. How frustrating was that in the Terry fight to prepare only for someone entirely different?
“Very frustrating, but it is one thing I've learned fighting and with training is to adjust. It's what separates the world-class fighters from the others.”
BoxRec has your amateur record at 2-4. Even BoxRec will admit that's off. Do you recall your actual record?
“I want to say it's 65-15. They have a few results of the tournaments I was in at 165 pounds, which at the time was my walk-around weight.”
165? You're competing at 135 now. Talk to me about the transformation.
“Yeah, the transformation happened when I was able to get training in and lock in at the right weight I wanted to compete at.”
Walk me thru just a typical day in the life of “Shortfuse”?
“Well, I wake up at five a.m. and help my father with his job as he does mechanic work. I put in a couple of hours in the morning, hit lunch, and then the gym.
“It just depends on my dad's schedule as he's my trainer. Relax and wind down. Eat dinner, and then try to get the 2nd workout in. That one is usually the one dad attends, and we work on different things there to prepare. The goal is to try to get two gym sessions in a day.”
You mentioned your dad's fleet company. What music are we playing in the car up there?
“Oh, man! It's all over the place. For this last fight, I've been playing old-school rap like the Lil' Troy song “Wanna Be A Baller.” Sometimes it's that. Sometimes it's the Top 40 Country.”
What are you watching on television in the downtime?
“I've been watching a lot of sports documentaries. The one I'm currently locked in on is the Tom Brady “Man In The Arena” series on ESPN+.”
What do you see as the goal for 2022 in the ring?
“I was looking to get in the ring about two or three more times this year. Hopefully, land on one of these big cards away from Tennessee, say in New York or Las Vegas.”