January 11th 2017
Name – Denato Richardson
Weight – 185 pounds
Record – 21 Wins 6 losses
Team – Detroit MMA and Boxing
Where are you from ?
I am from Battle Creek, MI.
How long have you been training in Mixed Martial Arts ?
How did you get involved in MMA ?
I was always a competitive athlete, whether it was Tic-Tac-Toe, chess, or football, I would always strive to win. When I saw that there was a sport that could put your mind nd body to the ultimate test, I was sold. I searched the internet for the first promoter I could find, set up a fight, and showed up. I won by submission after 26 seconds; I was hooked.
When did you realize that being a fighter as the path you wanted to follow ?
I believe it was at a very early age, the seed was planted, and grew into a deep devotion and love for the sport. I watched a mixed martial arts competition for the first time on TV and found myself very intrigued.
Where your family and friends supportive of your decision to pursue a career in MMA ?
Put it this way, I felt like Ralphie from The Christmas Story, asking for my first Red Rider BB gun! I got comments like, “yOU are crazy”, “you’ll break a leg”, and “why would you want to be punched in the face?”. While I did not have a rational explanation, the competitive athlete in me ignored the facts and followed my gut and trusted my heart. fast forward to now, they are my greatest supporters and biggest fans.
What is your current record ?
What is your favorite strike, subbmission, or combination to utilize in a fight ?
The Darce choke/toss, and for strikes would have to be my left high kick.
Who is your biggest inspiration in the sport ?
My biggest inspiration at this point in my life would have to be Dqualls Lee for his work ethic, endurance, and perseverance to overcome any obstacle.
What team do you train with ?
Recently, Dqualls Lee has taken me under his wing acquired great knowledge from athletes and trainers, such as James “The Equalizer” Ballard, Kevin “The CEO” Tubbs, and Detroit’s Street Fight King himself, Dqualls Lee, to name a few.
When you step in the cage where do you like the fight to take place do you want to keep it standing or take it to the ground ?
With my record of 10 knockouts, and 11 submissions, I am pretty comfortable and confident wherever the fight goes. I am pretty well-rounded but if I had to choose one, it would have to be standing and striking.
What does being a fighter mean to you ?
To me being a fighter means to train your mind and body to work as one, to push yourself past perceived limitations, and always pushing to be better than you were yesterday.
What weight do you fight at ?
What do you think separates you from the rest of the fighters at 185 ?
I think I have been so successful in my division due to my physical attributes such as my height at 6’4, my reach at 81′ inches, and my speed and strength. My experience gives me an advantage over a lot of fighters that have not been in the situations I have been in, in the cage.
If you could have one dream fight who would it be against and why ?
If I had one dream fight, it would be against Michael “Venom” Page. I believe he is over-rated and he hasn’t fought anybody that I could not beat, myself. He’s just full of himself for only being a over-promoted point-sparrer.
What is your mindset going into a fight ?
My mindset going into a fight is that I try to keep the clearest head as possible, almost like a nothingness. Trying to control my nerves along with the adrenaline before the fight so as not to deplete my reserves before the match was the hardest to overcome.But as I’m walking down, I think about my reasons why I must win. When I step into the cage, standing in my corner, I look for chinks in my opponent’s armor, for example, is he standing flat-footed, is he making eye contact? All of these things tell me a lot about a fighter. When the bell rings, all the nervousness, the butterflies, all of it seems to vanish at the sound of the bell. Then it’s time to go to work.
Who are you fighting next ?
Next fight is still in the works but I can assure you it won’t be long before you see me in action again.
What do you want people to remember you for at the end of your career ?
A wise man once said you should never want to leave this earth until you have impacted it in some type of positive way. With that being said, for me to be remembered as a positive, inspirational influence on one person’s life, I will be satisfied.
What is your favorite quote or motto when it comes to fighting ?
Sacrifice today for a better tomorrow.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in the sport so far ?
Linking up with Detroit MMA and Boxing feels like my biggest accomplishment because it has opened so many doors for me already.
Who has had the biggest influence on you and your career ?
My coaches and training partners are the most influential people in my career. They give me the extra push that is necessary so that I can compete at this high level, and win.
Who do you think has had the biggest impact on the sport and why ?
I would have to give it to Ronda Rousey because of the simple fact that she opened the door for women in MMA and the UFC.
How would you describe your fighting style to a new fan of the sport ?
I would describe my fighting style as tricky. It’s very hard to read. I am very good at fighting from both sides with knockout power from both hands and legs. If you took Bruce Lee, Mike Tyson, Muhammed Ali, and Ryan Hall and combined their style,that gives you a glimpse into my fighting style, lol.
What drives or motivated you to step in the cage and compete ?
I have always been very self-motivated. No matter what I am doing, I always give it my all and leave with no regrets.
What is something people might not know about you ?
I was born with a tail.. just kidding.. something people do not know about me is that I have a great sense of humor. Like mixed martial arts, laughter and comedic humor comes natural to me.
When you are not training or preparing for a fight what do you enjoy doing in your free time ?
When I have free time, which is rare, I enjoy Motorcross, camping and just being outdoors.
What advice can you give to the next generation of Mixed Martial Artist ?
Get a coach and make sure it is someone who you can trust. Don’t just take any fight trying to prove you are tough.
What do you think you would be doing today if you had never picked up the gloves and become a fighter ?
If it wasn’t for MMA, I don’t know where I would be in life. It has given me the drive to want and achieve more, not settling for average. I believe I can safely say if it hadn’t been for mixed martial arts, I would not be the disciplined and focused person that I am today.
What gets you mentally prepared for a fight ?
All of the hard months of training before I ever step in the cage prepares me mentally for those few moments of competition.
Do you have any rituals that get you ready to step in the cage ?
I always drink two clear Pedialites, one Gatorade, and at least 2 gallons of water the night before the fight. Ice bath, straight to a warm epsom salt bath.
Where do you see MMA as a sport in 5 years ?
I see the sport growing at the rate it has been going, with new and promising talent that the world has yet to see.
Where do you see yourself 5 years down the road ?
I will be fighting for a world championship or defending my world championship.
What do you think can change moving forward to make MMA better as a sport ?
Get rid of Michael “Venom” Page lol.
Who is your favorite fighter ?
Is there anyone you want to thank or give a shout out to ?
Big thanks to Dqualls Lee and Detroit MMA and Boxing for all the support and recognition that has been given to me recently. My family and friends for being there with me. There is just too many to name. I am thankful for all of you, you know who you are.