Jack Swagger is ready for his MMA debut.
This upcoming Saturday at Bellator 214 in Inglewood, California, there are five fights advertised for the main card with the headliner being Fedor Emelianenko versus Ryan Bader. Also on the main card is a former WWE World Heavyweight Champion -- that being Jake Hager or better known by wrestling fans as Jack Swagger. Hager is set to make his MMA debut against J.W. Kiser.
Hager is positive that he is ready for this fight and while speaking with TMZ Sports, he was asked about the differences between himself and former two-time WWE Champion CM Punk who also came over to MMA from pro wrestling but CM Punk's pro-fight career did not go as well as fans of his hoped it would. Hager went on to talk about his background in collegiate wrestling and how that along with the training he's done leading up to this fight has him prepared for Kiser.
“Why am I different? Oh gosh. I hate that I even have to answer this question but I like you so I will. I’m different for so many reasons; one, the weight class is different. Two, I’ve been wrestling since I was five years old bro. I’ve had the bug since I was five years old. Any form of wrestling I can get my hand on I’m training, and I’m training on a competitive level, and I’ll be honest with you, I was not good at wrestling until my balls dropped. I went through puberty, put on some weight and became athletic and less goofy, but number one I’m different, I have that background to rely on." Hager said. "I’ve been in the spotlights, I’ve been on the national stage where everyone is busting their ass for five months out of the year ready to perform. I have over 150 Division I college wrestling matches and I’m gonna rely on that as my amateur MMA and Boxing career to help me out when the anxiety kicks in and the bright lights start sweating but look at me, for the last twelve years, you tell me the date and time and I’m there, I’m advertised and I’m performing at a high level. So, I don’t know.” He concluded.
Hager added on to his points by saying that the biggest difference between himself and Punk is that he is ready to step into that octagon and inflict his will on his opponent.
“I think the biggest [difference you’re gonna see] between me and him is that I am prepared. I am one-hundred percent prepared to take this fight, to go into that octagon, go in the cage and inflict my will on anybody.” Hager expressed.
If the quote in this article is used, please credit TMZ Sports with an H/T to Fightful for the transcriptions.