Danny Martinez Says His Work With Gremlin's Kids Led To His UFC 169 Debut
Posted by Joseph Lee on 01.28.2014
In an interview with MMA Junkie, Danny Martinez (16-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC) explained how his work with Gremlin's Kids led to his UFC 169 debut against Chris Cariaso (15-5 MMA, 5-3 UFC). The two will fight on the FOX Sports 1 preliminary card from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
On working with the children: "[Bullying] really shuts kids down. That's really what I got my mind into, and teaching kids day in and day out in wrestling and MMA for three years. These kids, they really look up to me, and seeing them take goals and do everything they can has really pushed me to keep my dream alive."
On fighting like someone who has been bullied: "It's like when I was in second grade and I would get all teary-eyed and crazy. That's exactly how I still feel sometimes. I get real tense and aggressive, and I like that. People say that it takes you out of the fight. That's fine. It takes you out of the fight. But it's going to keep you in the fight when you're getting your ass kicked by Mark Hominick in the 15th minute in Montreal, Quebec."
On how the kids help: "I'm hoping to do is start a wrestling team with these kids. These kids play sports, and they win. They win championships. They win championships every time they play. If they had wrestling in their life, it's ridiculous what they could probably deal with themselves. My morale would go down after I would get a fight and they would cancel a fight, but teaching these kids and them telling me they look up to me, and I would say, ‘I'm just a coach, (and) they don't really have anything to look up to. I'm not a Benson Henderson. I'm not a Dominick Cruz. I'm not a champion. But I see what they're talking about now. They just look up to somebody that really cares and gives back to the community. That's what kept my drive going."