Bellator 93's Ryan Martinez on new path after years spend behind bars


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit

ryan-martinez-1.jpgRyan Martinez has been locked inside a cage before. But it’s a safe assumption he prefers Bellator’s version to what was previously in his life.

Martinez (8-2 MMA, 1-1 BFC) on Thursday fights Travis Wiuff (68-16 MMA, 4-1 BFC) in a heavyweight bout of Bellator 93's main card. He’ll do it with a clean slate after spending time battling drug addiction, as well as time behind bars.

Bellator 93 takes place at Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston, Maine. The main card, including Martinez vs. Wiuff, airs on Spike TV following prelims on Spike.com.

Once he got out of jail and started the next phase of his life, it was MMA that helped set him free.

“Over time, I’ve spent two years in jail, three and a half years in prison and two years on parole,” Martinez told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “I basically wasted the whole 20s of my life. It clicked with me when I was in the joint, because I was in there running and lifting every day, so I tried to carry on that mentality when I got out. I got a job as an iron worker and consumed all my time working there and working out. MMA got big in Colorado and a gym popped up where I was working out at, and the first night I went in to train, it ended up being a lifelong thing. I grew addicted to it.”

And Martinez knows something about addiction. He said he was addicted to methamphetamines while also selling – which is what got him locked up.

Martinez had a promising future in wrestling. But his trip down the wrong path started early.

“I had full-ride scholarships to anywhere I wanted to go for wrestling,” he said. “But after wrestling season, I started partying too much and that led to me not finishing high school. I was basically just running the streets and partying, and when I was locked up it gave me a chance to reflect on all the bulls—. I tried to reform myself and come out a better person rather than come out, f— up, and go back.”

After a move from Colorado to Las Vegas, Martinez is training with UFC heavyweight Roy Nelson and Bellator light heavyweight Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal at Jeff Mayweather’s gym. The chance to work with bigger fighters was one he couldn’t pass up on, and he believes that will help him turn the corner.

“I need heavyweights who can punch me so I can react to fighters of that weight,” Martinez said. “That’s why it was the best decision of my career to move down to Vegas. I’m working with some of the top guys in the weight class. Anyone who doesn’t think Roy Nelson is a top 10 heavyweight in the world is crazy, because the dude’s legit. ‘King Mo’ – his wrestling and his striking, despite what happened against Emanuel Newton, is f—ing legit, too. We’ve got a star heavyweight crew that’s always coming in, and I’m just going to use it to my benefit. My standup, my ground, everything. Wherever the fight goes, I’ll be ready.”

The one thing that stands out is Martinez’s experience – a little more than two years and 10 fights – compared to Wiuff’s experience: 13 years and more than 80 fights.

It’s a fact that isn’t lost on Martinez, who knows Wiuff can be dangerous, but also knows a win over him could put him on the map.

“I can’t just name three or four of his top skills – I can name like 10 or 12,” Martinez said. “The only thing I can say is that I hope I can put my hands on him more than he puts his hands on me, and I hope I can take him down more than he takes me down. If I can knock him out, I’m gonna try and knock him out. If I can submit him, I’m gonna try and submit him. But we’re preparing for war here. So whatever happens, happens, and I’m just going to give it 150 percent and get my hand raised at the end of the night.”

After that, he has even bigger plans – plans he probably couldn’t have easily foreseen while he was incarcerated.

“Where do I expect to be in a year or so? I’m going to be the Bellator heavyweight world champ,” Martinez said. “That’s all there is to it.”

For more on Bellator 93, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.

view original article >>

Related News

  • 29 days ago
  • 10 views

It's 1985. Wham! is the hottest thing in music, and movies like The Breakfast Club and The Goonies are reinventing the "random kids come of age, often while wearing awesome '80s clothes" genre. The jungles of Brazil are home to no-holds-barred combat, but America knows nothing of it aside from what they see outside the bar on a Saturday night. And Scott Coker just founded Strikeforce. It's a kickboxing promotion, a modest West Coast thrill for martial arts fans to be run by Coker, an experienced more

  • 27 days ago
  • 57 views

Until then, you can relive all the action here. Newport Beach, Calif. (June 25, 2014) - Spike TV will telecast an encore presentation of one of MMA's most memorable events of 2014, "BELLATOR MMA: RAMPAGE vs KING MO" on Friday, July 18 at 9:00pm ET/PT. For the first time on free television, fans that missed Bellator's first-ever pay-per-view event can witness the highly-anticipated grudge match between Rampage Jackson and King Mo plus epic upset victories for Will Brooks and Tito Ortiz. Fans can more

  • 27 days ago
  • 36 views

The end of the line has come for Eric Prindle and several other fighters, who are no longer on Bellator's roster. Bellator's house cleaning has extended beyond just ousting Bjorn Rebney and Tim Danaher. Earlier this week, the promotion confirmed the release of 19 fighters from its roster, most notably former heavyweight tournament winner Eric Prindle. The 38-year-old went on a run of just 1 win in his last 7 fights, and was stopped by James Thompson earlier this month. Prindle is best known, and more

  • 27 days ago
  • 43 views

Fight fans who missed the initial airing of Bellator's debut pay-per-view now have a chance to catch it for free. An encore presentation of Bellator 120 will air on Friday, July 18 at 9:00pm ET/PT on Spike TV, promotion officials announced on Wednesday. The replay is scheduled to debut one week before Bellator returns with its latest Summer Series event, Bellator 122. Bellator 120 originally took place on May 17 at the Landers Center in Southaven, MS. Quinton "Rampage" Jackson squeaked out a con more

  • 27 days ago
  • 22 views

If you missed Bellator MMA’s recent pay-per-view debut, you can watch a replay next month on Spike TV.Filed under: Bellator, News more

  • 27 days ago
  • 48 views

But insists the releases were done prior to the hiring of former Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker. Bellator MMA, which fired Bjorn Rebney just last week, has also said goodbye to 19 fighters under contract for the Viacom-owned mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion, including former title challengers Eric Prindle (heavyweight) and Anthony Leone (bantamweight). Here is the complete list of releases (via MMA Fighting): Eric PrindleAnthony LeoneRodrigo LimaFrank BacaNick KirkTravis MarxHiroshi NakamuraSerge more

  • 27 days ago
  • 29 views

Several names were removed from Bellator’s roster. Bellator officials confirmed to MMAFighting.com on Wednesday that 19 fighters were released from the promotion, including former title challengers Eric Prindle and Anthony Leone. The list was initially posted on Sherdog Forum. The list also includes Frank Baca, Nick Kirk, Travis Marx, Hiroshi Nakamura, Rodrigo Lima, Sergej Grecicho, Jared Downing, Jason Fischer, Tim Welch, Nathan Coy, Anthony Lemon, Trey Houston, Vaughn Anderson, Keith Berry, Je more

  • 27 days ago
  • 31 views

Russian MMA heavyweight Alexander Emelianenko is facing a possible 4-6 year sentence for the rape of a 27-year-old woman several months ago. Alexander Emelianenko is once again in the headlines for disturbing charges. The Russian heavyweight, who spent a portion of his career fighting in PRIDE and is best known as the brother of legendary heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, is currently facing charges for the sexual assault of a 27-year-old Polina Stepanova. The victim's lawyer intends to pursue the more

  • 28 days ago
  • 28 views

Season two of Malaysian Invasion, the tournament launched by Tune Talk last year, is already underway, but for last year’s winners Las Vegas beckons as they are flying out to compete at the IMMAF World Championships. more