Westin Wilson discusses his upcoming featherweight matchup with Bobby King at LFA 75. The event takes place Friday night at the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah and will air on AXS TV.
LFA 75 will be headlined by a 145-pound matchup between Jon Neal and Andrew Cruz.
The 30-year-old Wilson discusses how much weight he needs to cut for Thursday’s weigh-in and if that number is consistent with his past cuts, how he found MMA while in the fifth grade and how he wanted to be a part of it at a young age, how his father let him begin his martial arts training while living in Brazil, the matchup with Bobby King and why he feels it is tailor made for him, what rematch he would like if all goes well on Friday night and much more.
Wilson also discusses how he sees the fight going down in Utah on Friday night at LFA 75.
“I expect this to be a long fight,” Wilson told MyMMANews.com. “I very rarely get in three round fights but I expect it to go (into the third round). How the finish happens, I’m not sure. I’m staying ready for anything. It could be a knockout, it could be a submission, or it could just be a three round butt whooping. It will be one of those three.”
In addition, Wilson also discusses balancing a full-time job, fighting and family, and why he keeps a career as opposed to becoming a fighter on a full-time basis.
“My real job is a product manager of a software company, at start-up company,” Wilson explained. “I’ve got stock in the company and everything like that. They’re a great company, they support me 100-percent, they let me come out and work from remote locations to get my training in. My day actually starts at 6 a.m., I go and grapple, I come home and have breakfast with my girls — I have three little girls — then I go to work from 8:30 to 4. I’ll come home spend time with my wife and kids, then go train with Tyler Wombles or Raymond Daniels from 8 to 10, then get on a call with my development team in India from 10:30 to 11:30, sometimes midnight, I’ll go to bed, wake up and do it all over again.
“I, 100-percent, would (keep my full-time job if the UFC called),” Westin continues. “I was talking to someone the other day, let’s say a fighter is on a $30K/$30K contract and they fight three times in a year, I make more than that person if they won two of those fights. For me, I would always keep that full-time job because it’s security; I can go in and keep this as a hobby instead of being like, ‘this is my only income, I can’t pay the bills unless I win this fight.’ I don’t want that stress, or have that feeling, ‘oh, shoot, I lost this fight, I have a little bit of a knee injury, I’m gonna take another fight instead of healing up.'”
Finding that balance is very important as a competitor. Wilson feels he can still be competitive in the cage and uses the money he makes from fighting for the little bit of extra life can bring you. For young, up and coming fighters, this is a lesson that can certainly be taken to heart and, while Wilson isn’t opposed to taking the full-time fighter route, it would take quite a bit of money to do that.
“When you have that extra job, especially one that can pay all your bills, fighting is then a hobby — you can still be competitive, you can still have that drive to win, but you don’t have to rely on the income that comes from fighting,” Wilson said. “You’ll have that pressure taken off because everything else is just extra money. A lot of the money I make in fighting, we use for vacations, getting gifts and things like that. It just becomes extra money to have to enjoy life. It’s our fun money. Because I train so much, that extra money from fighting goes back to my family as a ‘hey, thanks for letting me do this.’
“Early on, in college, the money was great, but my mom would kill me if I quit my full-time job — and my wife would, too. I always promise them that unless I was making $100,000 a fight, I wouldn’t quit my job. Even then, you’ve got guys like Stipe Miocic, a world champion, keeps his job because the UFC doesn’t have insurance unless you’re fighting. With a family, insurance is a big perk. Benefits, having life insurance, those are all big perks that I don’t think fighters realize, and they don’t have a 401K, or retirement funds and I think for me, financially, it’s important to have that job. I’m never going to train eight hours a day. Four or five is the most, and I already do that. I don’t know what I would do with all that extra time to be honest.”
Check out the full interview with LFA 75’s Westin Wilson in the video above.
Mike Heck is the a freelance MMA journalist covering the sport for a number of websites. Specializing in video interviews, Mike interviews everybody from prospects, to title contenders, to world champions, along with other influential personalities in the sport of MMA. Subscribe to his channel at https://youtube.com/mikeheckmma.