Coming off a fight with Jessica Sotack that resulted in a draw at Bellator 182 last summer, Kristi Lopez is eagerly waiting the call for a second fight with the organization. “Loba” Lopez was a contestant on season 23 of the Ultimate Fighter, earning the opportunity with only two professional mixed martial arts bouts to her credit. The flyweight competitor wit a 2-0-1 record caught up with Tony Reid of MyMMANews.com to discuss her career.
Tony Reid – Bellator is really repping WMMA. There were a record five women’s fights on the Bellator 182 card. What are your thoughts on being a part of such a historic event and the continued showcase of the women of the sport?
Kristi Lopez – “I think it’s amazing to be a part of a record breaking event. It’s a really cool time to be a female MMA fighter. I’m so grateful to Bellator because they are doing such a great job of repping women’s MMA. It’s been a long road for a lot of us. I was really excited an honored to be a part of the card. It’s great for future female fighters to look up and see and present a strong female image for future fighters. Girl power!”
TR – There was a huge wave of women signed by Bellator recently. What are your thoughts on the talent pool and the opportunity to test yourself against the great fighters…and then maybe leading to an eventual title shot?
KL – “I would love that. That is the goal. You really want to be able to know in your heart that you are the best. That is what I am gunning for. I have never had a belt. I would love, love, love to have the Bellator Flyweight title. That would be a dream come true.”
TR – You are a big believer in the journey. What are your thoughts about this current journey? Who or what inspires you to continue down this road?
KL – “You should always test yourself. You should always live a little outside your comfort zone. Otherwise, you don’t really find out what you are made of or who you really are. If you always stay where you are comfortable or safe…sometimes I ask myself why I chose such crazy hard things to do. That’s why a lot of people like to watch fighters and fights. You are seeing a representation of someone’s heart and spirit on display in a physical form. They are just using the form of fighting to show their spirit. I have done a lot of reading on martial arts and philosophy. The whole thing is very honorable to me. To train your body and mind, my journey I went through some hard times. I learned that everybody has hard times. I am grateful for what I have. Every single day I am grateful. Really martial arts became a way for me to have a healthy outlet. I recommend that to anybody going through anything. Get involved in a sport. Boxing, Jiu Jitsu, it’s a really positive and healthy way to get though anything you are going through.
“I lost one of my brothers in an accident. After that it was really hard for me for a really long time. I really struggled. With the help of my family and finding martial arts I was able to channel everything into a healthy positive avenue. I really good message is that you can get through it. Even of you don’t know how you put one foo tin front of the other and keep going. That is a really important part of the journey for me. Just keep going. No matter how many times you get knocked down you get back up and keep going.”
TR – On your social media you list yourself as “Sophisticated Savage”. What does that mean exactly?
KL – (Laughs) “I love that saying because I have two very different sides to me. I love being a lady and being a woman. I have two Bachelor’s degrees, one in art and one in nursing. The savage part is that I really love to punch people in the face, too. I love the raw side of it, the real side of fighting. I am a renaissance woman right down the middle. Half of me loves getting dressed up, art and movies and the other side loves blood and the thought of grounding and pounding the shit out of somebody.”
In July of 2008 Tony Reid launched an MMA inspired clothing line that he named Reid Fight Wear. He saw a need in the MMA clothing market for a more classic, clean and timeless design and less of the dated styles seen then. In the process of major life changes, Tony cashed out his 401(k), emptied his bank account and put his heart and soul into building the brand.
In August 2009 Tony began writing for TapouT and MMA Worldwide Magazines. There he created Rattling the Cage, an MMA specific news site and home for all of his work.
In May of 2012 Reid began writing for Ultimate MMA Magazine, launching an MMA Legends and MMA Officials Series.
Also in May of the same year he started appearing regularly on ESPN 92.3 WVSL as the MMA Insider.
In early August of 2012 Reid was named General Manager of UFC Fighter Tim Boetsch’s Barbarian Combat Sports in Sunbury, PA.
By December 2012 Reid started contributing to Fighters Only Magazine. “The World’s Leading MMA and Lifestyle Magazine” is sold in over 30 countries around the world and has the largest reach of any international magazine of its type.
In May of 2013 Reid became a monthly segment host on Sirius XM Radio. Appearing the first Thursday of every month on TapouT Radio on SiriusXM (Sirius 92 XM 208) in a segment he created called “On Blast!” where he puts people in the MMA world on notice.
In June of 2013 Reid began writing for the UK based MMA Uncaged Magazine.
In August of 2013, Reid launched “Rattling the Cage with Tony Reid” a talk radio show he hosted on ESPN 92.3 WVSL “The Valley’s Sports Leader”. The show aired over 100 episodes and featured some of the biggest and brightest stars in the world of combat sports. It was one of the most successful shows in the station’s history.
In May of 2016 Reid became a feature writer for FloCombat.
In September of the same year Reid began writing for ONE Championship, Asia’s largest global sports media property in history.
Reid is happy to now join the team at MyMMANews as a contributor.