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â€œBecause I am the Truth! It doesnâ€™t matter, I just want to fight.â€
Mike “The Truth” Jackson
Interview and Photos by: Rich Burmaster
Mike Jackson is constantly having a good time, and the smile on his face shows it. At Windy Sports and Fitness with his friend and teammate Jermaine Anugawon or hopping into a Gracie Barra BJJ class, the setting does not change the result, Mike Jackson is having the time of his life. Next Friday at the second Lonestar Beatdown Muay Thai event Mike gets to do one of the things that makes him smile the biggest, fight. Mike will be taking on Craig Gardner in what will surely be a slugfest. I caught up with Mike at Gracie Barra Champions Forest location as he prepared for his fight.
TCD.Net: How did you get started in martial arts?
Mike: I have always been a fan of martial arts. I have several family members that were involved in Karate. I started watching the UFC about 12 years ago. I had always been a fan of wrestling and boxing. My friend called me up, and said he had the UFC video, and I went over and checked it out. I have been in love with it ever since. I didnâ€™t start training till April of 2008.
TCD.Net: Were you involved in any type of traditional martial arts as a kid?
Mike: No, my mom actually wouldnâ€™t let me do karate. When she asks me why I do mma, I tell her that if she had let me do karate as a kid I might not be as interested in mma now. Haha.
TCD.Net: Where did you get your start at?
Mike: I started with Jermaine Anugwon in College Station. We went as far as we could with the original gym, and we have since moved on. We are like brothers. We opened up Windy Sports and Fitness back in March.
TCD.Net: You also train at different schools throughout the area, how have you been able to keep that open relationship with other schools?
Mike: My personality. ha-ha. I am a very likable person, and people welcome me with open arms. I have trained at all of the College Station gyms and with several gyms in Houston. My second home is actually here at Gracie Barra Champions Forest.
TCD.Net: What has kept you training with Jermaine?
Mike: The relationship we have built since day one. I couldnâ€™t see myself leaving the brothers of destruction.
TCD.Net: Your next fight is at the Lonestar Beatdown Muay Thai event here on the 11th. What brought up your participation on this card?
Mike: I called Mick a few weeks back and let him know that I wanted on the card. I have been out of the game since last September. I have been training hard on my ground game, and I wanted to get back in the ring since I like to stand and a bang. Mick hit me up a week or so back and asked if I would take the fight with Craig Gardne, and I accepted.
TCD.Net: What do you know about your opponent Craig Gardner?
Mike: He is a funny guy and a very well rounded MMA fighter.
TCD.Net: Not may guys would want to face an opponent of Craigâ€™s caliber last minute. What made you take this fight against a dangerous opponent?
Mike: Because I am the Truth! It doesnâ€™t matter. I just want to fight. I have good striking skills, and I will rely on that skill set to prevail.
TCD.Net: How does this fight end?
Mike: By referee stoppage from the Truth Flurry!
TCD.Net: Is there anything you want to say to Craig directly?
Mike: Craig and I are cool. We will probably hug and take pictures after the fight. Hopefully, he rocks the stache because I am bringing mine!
TCD.Net: It has been rumored that Craigâ€™s â€œStacheâ€ addâ€™s 10 to his speed. What type of superpower does your stache give you?
Mike: I already have super speed without the stache. With it I am not sure the people will be able to see the punches, or the kicks. I will be throwing kicks, better keep them hands up because head kicks are coming.
TCD.Net: Your last MMA fight was in September of 09, why such the long delay in fights?
Mike: I wanted to counter act the Stall Jitsu that people like to use against Mike Jackson. I found that here at Gracie Barra with professor Marcelo, so if a rematch comes about with that guy I will be ready.
TCD.Net: Do you think others believe the only way to beat you is by holding you down?
Mike: Yeah, I am just too quick on the feet.
TCD.Net: Is there a fighter you are looking to fight?
Mike: I could care less who it is. There is one gym out there that I would like to have a shot at, little bit of a personal grudge. I requested to be on the Legacy card against the gym, but it didnâ€™t happen. So anyone from Submission Boxing is more than welcome to step up to the Truth and get crushed.
TCD.Net: Who are your favorite fighters?
Mike: Floyd Mayweather. Anderson Silva, I try to mimic my style after his. Iâ€™m just a little behind in my striking and ground compared to him. ha-ha. Rashard Evans. Ben Henderson. Alistar.
TCD.Net: Tell us about your video blogs.
Mike: They are blowing up. I video diary my day or weekend during different events, and there always seems to be a comedic experience. I always seem to run into the funniest people and get them on camera. Iâ€™m trying to expose combat sports to the fans and people who love the sports, but also to those who only know mma and boxing from what they see on TV. Every blog seems to get more and more hits.
TCD.Net: Tell us about Windy Sports and Fitness.
Mike: Itâ€™s the newest gym in College Station to open up, and itâ€™s a true gym. There are a lot of gyms up there that are more like studio based Karate gyms. We wanted a fight gym, not a fight club. We offer instruction in all different types of fighter workouts.
TCD.Net: Whatâ€™s next for the Truth?
Mike: I am in the process of branding myself. I have my site www.mikethetruth.com. The sky is the limit. I am not just a fighter I am an entertainer. To make it in anything you have to stand out. There are great fighters with no personalities who people donâ€™t know. People know me and my personality more than my record.
TCD.Net: Anyone you want to mention or thank?
Mike: Jermaine and Brooke at Windy Sport and Fitness, my manager Ragan at B3 sports, the cagedoor crew, you guys have given a lot of exposure to the Houston scene, Craig Garnder thatâ€™s my man!.
Catch Mike’s video blogs on his website, http://www.mikethetruth.com/
You can also follow him on twitter -Â http://twitter.com/TheTruthJackson
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