ILLINOIS (Tue, March 28, 2017)– When most people think of high level athletes they think of the likes of LeBron, Tom Brady, and Kris Bryant. For me however I’m a bit different. A few weeks ago i had the pleasure of seeing one of the best athletes I’ve ever seen in person and this young man happens to have Cerebal Palsy. Did that make a difference to him or hinder him for trying to live his dream? Hell no!! The strong willed “Tornado” set the bar very high at Gateway Fight Series: Destiny. That’s the true definition of inspiration.
Dustin: What got you into mixed martial art?
Nick: I got into it because I was looking for a place to teach me some self defense and I joined extreme Krav Maga with Sam Richardson. And then last year I met Mike Rogers and I tell him my dream was to one day fight in the cage and he said we can make that hope so I train hard to earn my fight in the cage against UFC veteran Josh Sampo.
Dustin: Was there any hesitation from your parents when you told them your plans?
Dustin: Whats it been like since having that conversation with coach Rogers a little over a year ago and day in and day been in a room full of amazing athletes at St. Charles MMA?
Nick: It’s been amazing all of the fighters that train of St. Charles MMA are beasts they push me every time I train at the Gym and I think it is pretty awesome I get to train with UFC veteran Josh Sampo and Bellator mma veteran Ej Brooks and since I can’t stand up on my own I do Brazilian Jiu-jitsu at the best gym in Missouri and I am getting faster and everytime I train
You touched on it earlier but recently you took on your teammate The Gremlin Josh Sampo at Gateway Fighting Series take us through that experience.
I knew Sampo was not going to be and easy opponent and coming in to the fight I worked specifically on takedown defense and I walked in to the cage wanting to destroy him with my ground skills and I landed lots of strikes and I try hard for a armbar but he got out of it and I finished The UFC veteran the Gremlin off with a Gulltoine choke in the 1 round and after I Beat Sampo that same night I got my second strip on my white belt.
And the crowd was Electric cheering my name Nick!
Dustin: What was it like for you to hear how loud the crowd got as you neared your finish.
Nick: It felt awesome!!!
Dustin: I notice that you have some new hardware. Tell the FightBookMMA fans exactly what that is.
Nick: After the fight in the cage I was awarded a Gateway Fighting Series trophy by Brain Higginbotham and earned my second strip on my white belt from Mike Rogers of St.Charles MMA. Over the weekend a Gateway Fighting Series Champion Belt was delivered to St. Charles MMA from Jared Daniels-Block. I was surprised, none of this was expected.
Dustin: What can fans expect from “The Tornado” next?
Nick: I will continue my BJJ training, enter some tournaments and cheer my fighting buddies on. You all will see me at the fights as a fan and after more training as a figter.
Dustin: Last one. Being such an inspiration if you had one message to the mixed martial arts community what would it be?
Nick: I never imagined MMA could be such an influence on my life. You see I have cerebral palsy which may make you think I have limitations, but training with Sam Richardson (weight training & hitting mitts) and with Mike Rogers (Technical BJJ) has given me the confidence and encouragement I need to see that I really have no limitations. Like my Dad, Mom and Brothers, the MMA is family, what a great bunch of people!
I became interested in fighting when my good friend Johnny Cox invited me to watch him compete in a MMA match. I sat cage side and almost felt I was a part of the fight, they were so close I swear I felt sweat from the fighters hit my face. I was hooked, I could not get enough, and I began watching televised fights and attending many of the local shows.
For more on this amazing athlete check him out on the social media platforms.
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