I do not believe in breaking and beating down another man strictly for the entertainment of others. Fighting is about defending what is yours from those who attempt to oppress you. Fighting is a means for defending the freedoms and inalienable human rights that other’s may attempt to take from you. Engaging in combat with someone to test each other’s will and test each other’s skill so that you both may grow and evolve is what the “sport” of MMA is about. Mixed Martial Arts is path towards physical and spiritual growth through controlled, regulated and judged hand-to-hand combat. MMA is a sport but “fighting” is not. Boxing is a sport. Wrestling is a sport. Jiu Jitsu is a sport. These sports have scoring systems in place designed to determine the winner and the object is to score more points than your opponent.
Fighting is not a sport. In fighting, the winner is the guy who walks away able to return to his family with his freedoms intact. In the defense of ones freedoms and ones family, the total destruction of ones enemy is justified. MMA is a sport but it is based on fighting, because of this it is a brutal and savage sport.
On March 3rd I will step into the Strikeforce cage across from Ryan Couture because he has agreed to compete against me in the sport of Mixed Martial Arts. On March 3rd in Columbus Ohio I will fight Ryan Couture and I will use everything in my power to destroy him. I will be justified in doing so because I am in a place where he is an oppressor attempting to take my freedom and take the food out of my loved one’s mouths.
I put myself in this place with the decisions that I have made. People tell me, “You’re 33 years old, why don’t you get a job? Why don’t you get an apartment? Why don’t you get married and have kids?” I want to do these things but I am a fighter. Becoming a fighter was not a choice, I was born this way, it is in my blood. MMA is my calling and for this season of war it is the path I’ve chosen to walk. When you sign the bout agreement you are placing yourself in harms way as you are attempting to hinder my ability to provide for my family.
My happiness and my ability to live the life I want depends on winning in this brutal game we call Mixed Martial Arts. I have put myself here. I have backed myself into a corner where I am truly fighting for my life. If I don’t win I don’t get my check and If I don’t get my check, I won’t be able to put food on the table for myself and my loved ones. I have created a situation through my choices, where I am fighting a life or death battle. I know inside that the creation of this life or death situation is why I have made the choices I’ve made. I have created this environment to motivate myself, to force myself into a place where I am free to do anything to win the fight, to take any chance and make any sacrifice. I have built a reality where I feel justified allowing an opponent to break my arm in rout to victory so that I can collect my check and provide food and shelter for the people that I love and care about.
Sure, I have a college education and I could presumably do other things yet no one’s knocking on my door offering me a job but people are calling me on the phone telling me that I have to fight on March 3rd if I want to be able to eat for the next few months. They also tell me that if I lose, I’ll get half the money and that I might not get that call again.
I step into the cage with one thing on my mind and that is to kill the man standing across from me. He is the man trying to take what I need to survive. At this point it is no longer a game. At this point it is real fucking serious. People tell me I should have tapped out in my last fight and lost. If I told you that I was going to take your job away from you unless you let me break your arm I bet you’d let me break your arm. You’d have to. What would you do? What would you be willing to do so that you wouldn’t have to tell your wife that you’re going to lose the house? What would you do to avoid telling your kids that they aren’t ever going to be able to graduate high school and go to college because they need to start working if they want to eat? If you wouldn’t let me break your arm to save your family from those hardships then you are a fucking coward and you have no right to call yourself a man.
I try to elevate myself above the commercialism that is the “game” of modern MMA. I try to justify the destruction of my opponent by telling myself that it is consensual violence and that we’ve both agreed to battle to test each other. Well the fact of the matter is, unless you are willing to die in that cage then you are at a supreme disadvantage because I’ve put myself into a situation where winning the fight IS a life or death matter. I have made my bed but I’m not willing to lie in it. I’m not laying down for anyone. If you don’t need to win this fight, if it’s just a hobby for you, something you do to impress your friends or for the “love of competition” then when you face me, a man who has created a reality in which I must win in order to live, you are at a HUGE disadvantage.
There are documented stories of women lifting cars off of their babies and saving their lives. There are documented stories of people trapped under boulders in the wild cutting off their limbs to free themselves. There are countless tales of mortals performing superhuman feats in order to save their own lives or the lives of their loved ones when faced with insurmountable obstacles. I am not facing an insurmountable obstacle; I am facing Ryan Couture.
I have created a reality for myself in which winning in the cage on March 3rd is a life or death situation. Good fucking luck trying to stop me from doing so. I struggle to come to peace with the destruction that I will bring upon you but I tell myself that you agreed to the rules, you agreed to fight me and that no one forced you to try and ruin my life and crush my dreams. You choose to do it out of arrogance and disrespect for the warrior that I am. If you haven’t been living under a rock for the last 6 years you know that I am capable of overcoming ANY physical obstacle in the pursuit of my dreams and my dream is to strap the Strikeforce belt around my waist. This is really just a means to an end for me. The belt is just a symbol that I have reached a place where my talent has been recognized and that by walking this path I have earned the right to own my own home and to provide for my loved ones.
I have created a reality where doing this depends on my obliteration of anyone who stands before me in that Strikeforce cage and Ryan Couture, you choose to stand in the way of my happiness and because of that choice, I will break you. I have no other choice.
I do not ask forgiveness for the violence that I will bring to you because you stand in the way of a life of peace and happiness for me and my loved ones. I want you to know that I admire your spirit and respect you as a warrior. I don’t know what your life is like and I don’t know what this fight means to you, but On March 3rd I will be fighting for all that I love and believe in. Saturday night you will step into the cage across from the most highly motivated, focused and determined warrior you have ever faced and with the world as my witness, I will do everything in my power to destroy you.