Training: Training never changes for me. I'm always working on my ground game, always improving my wrestling and of course working a ton of stand up.
When and why did you start training for fighting? I just love the pressure and I love the feeling of winning over another guy. When I was 18 I won an amateur tournament and have never looked back.
What ranks and titles have you held? I was multiple defending champ for the XFO, an organization that has launched many careers including UFC, PRIDE, WEC and IFL fighters.
Do you have any heroes? Jeff Curran has been a big brother to me, a mentor and he has shown me everything I know about fighting. He would have to be my hero.
What is your favorite technique? KO standing, however it happens. As for the ground, I love the triangle.
What does it mean for you to fight in the WEC? Oh I am so excited. My trainer Jeff fights for WEC and it’s been so long since we are on the same show together. I love the organization and what they are doing for the lighter weight classes. It’s the rebirth of my career.
Did you go to college and if so what degree did you earn? I graduated High School, but never went on to college. I was training and fighting full-time when I was still in High School to be honest.
What was your job before you started fighting? I was in High School and there was a work program that I was part of for a Brake Company in our area. Never planned on doing that full-time though.
Most memorable professional fight (who, where, why)? My KO over Ryan Schultz clinched the team championships back in IFL. It was a barn burner fight and we were trading a lot. He went down and the championship was ours. It was a big highlight of my career.
What was your most challenging professional fight (against who, when, what was the outcome)? Andrew Chappelle in Super Brawl a few years ago. I won a decision against him. He came down from 170 and was very good. Broke my hand in the 1st and he got an armbar on me and I didn’t tap so I had my arm broke too. I went on to fight for the 2nd and 3rd round. I tested my heart, and the timing in my life made it that much more meaningful to me.
Did you compete in any other sport(s) at college or professional level (what sport, where, how long)? No. I’ve been training and competing in BJJ since I was 16. I loved to compete in Jiu-Jitsu and won a few medals before taking on more MMA. I also boxed but as an amateur, not a pro.
Who were your training partners for this fight? Way too many to list, but I worked with all the same guys I always worked with. All the guys at Team Curran, and all the coaches there. Jeff Curran being my BJJ and head coach, Doug Mango works on my boxing and Brett Brendel has been working on improving my Thai Boxing.
Did you put more emphasis towards a fighting style or adjust your training to prepare for your opponent (what did you do differently/why)? I just get ready for the fight, making every aspect of my game as good as I can.
What, other than WINNING, are you using for motivation for the fight? My main motivation is winning. Other than that winning, and winning :) I just enjoy fighting and that's what is motivating, the fight itself.
What is your favorite thing about this sport? I am good at it! (haha) Actually, I really like how it’s always evolving and how challenging it is. I love the feeling I get once that bell rings. I love the satisfaction of a nice KO or submission. I just love it!
How long do you see yourself staying in this sport? As long as my body holds up. I got another good 10 years, if not more. I am here for the long haul. Probably around the 100 fight mark.