"Up. Down.1 - 2!" The short old man in exercise outfit with a towel draped over his right shoulder screamed out at me. I was doing sit-ups and getting prepared for my upcoming fight. I have gone undefeated for three years; I am what the world knows as an ultimate fighter. In a month, I was finally getting my shot at the heavyweight crown of MMA. I am matched up against my former ally. "You're worthless. You can't defeat the heavyweight champ. You should go home and play house." The same old man bellowed out in his gymnasium to me. "No. I can't quit. I won't." as I let that out, I trained harder and faster. My story doesn't start from there. I wasn't always a fighter.
Chapter 1: Beginnings
I was born to two great parents in Tim and Kimberly Williams. They didn't know just what their newborn was going to be like for the rest of his life, what career he would chose. A normal person would ask why he would subject his family, friends, and acquaintances to this type of work. I was born Kenneth Robert Williams, Ken or Kenny Williams for short to my parents in the summer of 1983; my parents were blue collared, hard working people. My father was a night manager for Wal- Mart in our hometown of Chicago, Illinois. My mother went through school and became a certified accountant. She was always good with numbers, she loved those numbers and I inherited that from her. My father’s brutal strength is what I inherited from him or so, he said.
Ah, Chicago. Hometown of the cubs’ baseball team, the Chicago style pizza. I remember when I was a kid and grabbing a slice of that Angela’s Pizza on 23rd street and running home and my mother being mad at me for spoiling my dinner. I love Chicago. I don’t ever want to leave this place, and I really never have. I remember that my first day of school was at this elementary school in town called, “Red Apple” Elementary School. I walked into Mrs. Watson’s first grade as a silent, little, puny kid. I never really made any trouble in Kindergarten. But as I would grow older, that’s when I knew fights were getting more and more important to me, not just the physically but the mental. If you let life get to you, as many has then you have a big fight on your hands. That fight is within you to not break down and give up when the tough gets going and the going gets tough.
I was always taught by my parents to work for everything; you need and want in life. I started training and or worked out when I was ten years old as my parents signed me up for the community’s basketball team after school at the recreation center. I was taught to do sprints, pushups, sit – ups, lift weights. There at that old, recreation center. The center has been a monumental establishment in my neighborhood as it has been around for 45 years. It eventually becomes the site of my first and last ultimate fights. Which are years in-between each other. I met Carl Yaksova who was my coach back then; he was a real ball buster. Carl made us work so hard before each and every game to ensure victory and not be made a fool of. At the time, Carl, recently came over from his country, Russia. I remember one game, it was the bottom of the 4th quarter and we were up by three points. THREE POINTS. Carl Yaksova wanted us to dominate and destroy the other team by any means necessary.
I never understood but I realize now that he wanted us to make an impact. Look good for being champs of the neighborhood when another neighborhood would challenge us to a game, he’d ignore them to give us the reputation of us being so busy keeping in conditioned form for the season. The only reason, I, never played professional ball and I’ll say it now is that when I applied to several colleges after high school, I never got in to. I would say I regret not going to college but I don’t. I’m an ultimate fighter; I beat up men for a paycheck. How cool is that? I mean, I get to bash someone’s face in with my fist! But there is more to it. We should talk about my earlier days in my career. Those days where I got to sit on a fucking plane ride to Colorado, Tokyo, Cambodia, and Turkey to fight in tournament to be crowned the best fighter in the history of the sport. I drew some doctor out of Mississippi. Man, was he nervous? I saw pale white skin, blood shot eyes, and some unbalanced shaking in his joints. I ended it quick and started my three year undefeated streak. I punched him in the jugular vein which made the dude close his eyes from the impact and I kneed him in the breadbasket which on one knee, jumped onto the dude’s neck which he is already a mess. Blood is gushing out of his forehead and mouth, might have some cracked ribs there, fella? And I locked in the triangle choke which is a submission that puts my tights and knees around your neck and squeeze till you either tap out or black out. I won my first fight. I still have more to go to prove myself in the dangerous world of Mixed Martial Arts. After my bout, my old trainer, Carl gave me a call.
Williams: “…Who... Who is this?”
Carl Yaksova (Speaking Russian)
Carl Yaksova(Speaks Russian then broken English): “… CARL! Joos old trainer! Hows it going, kid?”
Williams: “ Pretty good. Just won my debut fight, going to win this tournament. I want to prove to be the best fighter on the whole freakin’ planet!”