This was the date of X-1 World Events MMA #51 “One to Remember”. It was a date that I had to defend my Bantamweight World Championship Title. Everyone gathered at the Blaisdell Arena to witness this epic battle. Hours of waiting before the walkout. Seeing and hearing the wins and losses of others fighting. Witnessing different emotions from super hyped to heartbreak by other fighters. This date went down in history for me and my camp! And Still…
Taiki TIKE Tsuchiya
A respectful guy. Someone who is a seasoned fighter in the MMA Game. Traveled over 3,000 miles to fight me. He came ready to take that title from me. He knew from the beginning that he wasn’t going to have an easy fight. I have to give him the credit he deserves because he came with great intentions, but my determination and will was much stronger than that intention. He and I both gave the crowd a good show!
In the cage
The intense feeling of finally being able to scrap was definitely there. Feeling the energy of those there to support me was amazing. Did nerves hit? Maybe but I had no time to think about that. My focus was on Tike and what I needed to do to be victorious.
The both of us got good shots in. I needed to get back in the groove after falling a couple of times. After the first round I knew what I had to do. I needed to play my game and not his. I got the opportunity to ground and pound and I did just that. Punches to the face, fist to the head, knees to the body. I continued striking until the ref intervened because Tike could not seem to get put of that corner.
My Corner: Coach B, Coach Oz, Ryan. Other Coaches: Coach Scott and Coach Haru
We are 9 days out from X1 World Events 51. I will be defending my Bantam Weight World Title. My training is firing full force as the final stretch approaches. I am not taking anything for granted or my opponent lightly. My coaches are doing their part in preparing me the best they can and the rest is up to me to execute.
This will be the toughest match…
To me every match is the toughest match! If a fighter doesn’t think this, then in some sense they are taking their opponent lightly. A tough match is every match you take because you just don’t know what to expect. All I can do until then is focus on myself and on my training. I know that my opponent is coming and will be bringing all he got because he wants my title!
Are you tired?
This is a frequently asked question. Fighters like me here in Hawaiʻi have to hold a full time job because we cannot all be fortunate to fight and make money especially since we pay to live in paradise. All I know is that I can’t stop and won’t stop until I complete the task at hand and that is defending my title and representing Hawaiʻi best I can. Until then, the hustle is real, putting in the work is crucial!
Sending out a quick thanks to all who have purchased shirts and tickets from me. I find part of my motivation from seeing all the support and feeling all the love that comes my way. From my family, friends, sponsors, co-workers, students and beyond, the love and support is amazing!
I look forward to putting on a great show for all of you and I know only great things can happen with that support and love!
This soul was born for battle, my heart was built for war!