by Aung la N Sang – I have never felt so confident and emotional as I did walking into the cage to fight Jason Louck. A few moments before the fight, in the dark holding room, my cornermen amped me up with the pre-fight talk.
“It’s your time!” Yelled Tim Spriggs, my training partner and friend. Yes it is!
“This is your fight Aung, you’ve worked so hard for it. It’s your time Aung!”
“It’s my time!” I screamed tears in my eyes, pacing back and forth in the darkroom. There is nothing he can do to stop me!
They called my name and it was show time. The crowds were on their feet as they applauded for the main event. Despite the overwhelming noise, I knew exactly where my teammates and friends were standing and cheering for me. I am not going to let you guys down!
I stepped into the cage confident, knelt down and did my pre-fight routine…everything went into slow motion. We touched gloves and wasted no time attacking each other with our best shots. During the exciting back and forth action, I realized his guard was all to his head.
Immediately I jabbed twice to the face to get his attention from the body and I threw a hard cross to his solar plexus with everything I had. I routinely threw this same cross on the heavy bag and I punched thousands of time on the pads every morning with Coach Fox. The fake shots to the head were set ups for a body shot and there was no lying about the body shot. Jason smiled first acknowledging the great shot and with a delayed reaction, he held his body in pain and I pounced on the opportunity and finished the fight with a knockout punch with my right hand. “Fighting is a lying sport. You have to keep your opponent guessing.” Coach Fox would often saying during team sparring sessions and it stuck with me in the back of my mind.
During the pre-fight interview, I made a prediction saying, “I will finish him with my right hand.” Looking back, it was a very bold and outlandish statement, but the fact was, I genuinely believed in every word of that interview. For two months leading up to the fight, I had spent a couple hours every morning working on my hands with the best boxing coach available to me.
As Arthur Ashe, an all time great American tennis player, once said:“One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is…preparation.”
I’m amazed at how true I found these words. The experience and the lesson I learned from this Mixed Martial Arts fight, I will take with me for the rest of my life.