February 5th 2016
Name – Rashelle Cook
Nickname – The Sadistic Saint
Weight – 125 pounds
Record – 1 win 1 lose
Team – Fisticuffs Combat Academy
Where are you from ?
How long have you been training ?
about 3 1/2 years.
How did you get in to MMA ?
I was living in florida with my son’s father which was a bad situation all around and while i was sitting at home alone with my newborn baby everyday i started to watch the shamrock/ortiz season of ultimate fighter… my mind quickly decided for me.. that would be fun turned into i want to do that and i want to do that turned into i have to do that.
Tell us about your nickname and how you got it ?
I actually came up with my nickname “The Sadistic Saint” I know your not supposed to make your own but when my first fight came around I still had not been nicknamed so i just went for it.. it suits me because i am a genuinely nice person who wants to make change in the world, but i still love punching people in the face lol.
What was the defining moment for you when you knew you wanted to become a fighter?
The first time I caught a sparring partner with a spinning back kick straight to the solar plexus and folded her… I didn’t realize i was capable of anything like that until that moment.
Were your family and friends supportive when you decided you wanted to compete im MMA ?
yes they always said good for you but I could tell that many had their doubts about me making anything of it.
What is your current record ?
officially 1-1 -0 (sanctioned) unofficially 4-3.
What is your favorite strike or submission to use in a fight ?
it’s no secret that I like to use my right hand… my right over hand has been an automatic for me from day 1. I can insert that into just about any combo easily.
Who is your biggest inspiration ?
my parents have always been my biggest inspiration.. they were far from perfect but they lived the way they saw fit without regrets.
What team do you train with ?
Fisticuffs Combat Academy in Waterford Michigan.. I love it there. The atmosphere and work ethics are top notch.
When you step in the cage do you like to stand with your opponent or take the fight to the ground ?
that can depend on the opponent.. I feel most comfortable standing but I’ll take it anywhere i feel the smarter place to be is.
What does being fighter mean to you ?
being a fighter doesn’t just apply to MMA.. being a fighter means that you refuse to give up even when odds are stacked against you and defeat seems impossible… you stand persevere and fight because that’s the only way you know how to react.
What weight do you fight at ?
I have fought at 125-120 and 115 pounds.
What do you think separates you from other fighters In your division ?
I always say that is sport is made for a young mans body and an old mans mind.. I’ll be 32 in March and I think that puts me right in the middle of the balance.. i havent put my body through hell for years and years so my body is fine.. and over the past few years of training i have come to know myself as far as what i am capable of physically and mentally.
If you could have one dream fight who would it be against and why ?
Fetty Wap.. I have been saying i want to punch him in the face for months! lol.
Who has been your toughest fight to date ?
That would be my second fight.. it was in Wisconsin and it was the biggest show I had seen at that point.. i knew there was a huge whole in my game because i didn’t train at a gym that we could do cage/wall work on so i was clueless about how to get my back off the cage.. it was very frustrating being tied up not being able to move.. I corrected that immediately and now often press the fight to the cage wall for an advantage.. i think my opponents name was Jennifer.. i cant remember the last name.
What is your mindset going in to a fight ?
That also depends on the fight.. so many things can happen in the time between weigh ins and the show… I ended up finding out i was corner-less at the venue i was fighting at an hour or so before i got into the cage.. luckily there are some great people in the MMA world and i ended up having a great corner.. i guess i just try to stay warm and relaxed until the ref says go cuz once those hands clap IT’S ON.
Who are you fighting next ?
I’m defending my title against Larkyn Dasch.
What holes or weaknesses do you see in her game that you can exploit ?
She’s a green fighter so I’ll definitely have experience on her.. she seems tough but I don’t think she has ever been taken past the second round.. i have fought some crazy wars that have gone to decision 3 rounds and 5.
What promotion are you fighting for ?
Michigan Battle League.
Date and time of your next fight ?
Feb. 6th door open at 7 I believe.
What do you want to be remembered for at the end of your career ?
Being a great athlete and coach.
Who has been most influential to you in your career ?
all of my coaches.. I see coach/student relationships to be very similar to parent/child relationships in this sport.. you have to trust that your coach has your best interests at heart… if they show you that they do they will more often get 100% effort from their fighters.
Who do you feel has had the biggest impact on the sport ?
I hate to say it but Dana White.. I’m not a huge fan of his but he took the UFC to a level few thought it could reach and it continues to clear paths for the MMA community.
How would you describe your fighting style ?
there really is no description.. I like taking on new knowledge of any style so my style constantly evolves.
What drives or motivates you to step in the cage and compete ?
to be honest.. a lot of the time its pride and sheer stubbornness.. sounds shallow even to me but in my opinion this is one of the hardest sports in the history of competition.. I want to say i can do that and i can do it well.. plus being a tiny 5’4 female who could drop most dudes on the street makes me feel like im always walking around with a secret lol.
What gets you mentally prepared for a fight do you have any rituals that get you ready to step in the cage ?
I actually have quite a few.. i usually do a photo shoot with my favorite photographer Ray at RSII Photography, i do my best to eat at a mexican restaurant for post weigh in meal.. i never wear my fight out fit after i fight in it so getting the new one is sort of a ritual..lets see i also get into doing some mindfulness meditation when it gets close to the night.
Your backstage about to walk out your music hits what’s going through your head as you walk to the cage ?
I’m always at the end of the card so I think “finally” pretty much sums it up lol.
Who is your favorite fighter ?
there’s too many to choose just one.. I go old school with my favs.. Liddell, Hughes, gsp they paved the way and got people interested.
When you’re not training what do you like to do with your free time ?
I also work full time and have and 8 year old son.. i don’t get free time lol.. i have grudgingly come to accept that.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the sport so far ?
sticking to it.. I have had countless set backs and doubts but i never walk away.. I’m not sure I’m capable at this point.. I’m too far gone.
What do you think the biggest challenges are for women in MMA ?
Luckily there are less than there used to be and I only see it getting better. Training can be where its worst.. We are always outnumbered. Some guys think its great when a chick can catch em with a good strike or submission they didn’t see coming, some take it as an insult to their masculinity and are unnecessarily aggressive from that point on.. usually the young who are not high ranked will act this way.
What advice can you give to young female fighters ?
if this is what you want to do don’t let anything stop you from being great… being great takes time so remember that the better you is worth the wait.. grind on.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years ?
well I’ll defiantly be going for my personal trainer certification within the next year.. I’ve been wanting to do that for a while.. I’d love to be a coach and even better someday I would like to own my own gym.
What are your goals within the sport ?
I think the most rewarding job in this sport would be coaching.. passing your knowledge to the future to watch it succeed again and again.
Is there anyone you want to thank or give a shout out to ?
id like to thank my coaches at fisticuffs combat academy for doing an awesome job keeping me motivated for this fight… the promoters that don’t forget me even though I like a 4 month break… and my friends who support me from afar most of the time because I never have time to do anything with them lol.. and of course the little baby jesus.