We are less than 24 hours away from UFC 229 press conference, which marks the first time Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor come face to face (Sep. 21 at 5am AWST). The world of combat sports highly anticipates the event, indeed. The reason why is the personalities of the fighters, which reminds me of some wise words once spoken by Hollywood actor Michael Jai White.
The famed actor and respected Martial Artist Michael Jai White appeared on The Fightbox Podcast with Daniel Austin last December. The interview, which you can listen to below, was made ahead of the Cops and Robbers (2017) movie release.
White spoke about realism in the production of fight scenes, stunts, choreography, training and more. Among everything, he said that the “best fight scenes are the scenes that have a story within them”.
“To me the best fight scene ever is Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris in Way of the Dragon (1972),” said Michael Jai White. “There was so much articulated through that fight scene. There was honor, there were personalities, evolution of the fight, strategy changes. It made it really engaging.”
“It’s about the story that’s going on within the fight that makes it special”
Talking of real fights, White said that in order to engage with the audience, it was also about the personalities. And yet, trash talking is part of the fight game.
“As long as people in a fight scene have that personality while they are fighting, it’s really engaging. It’s really a lot more interesting to watch. You are not just watching people do things.”
“You watch Conor McGregor because of his personality. That’s a really big thing. Conor McGregor fighting Jose Aldo (UFC 194), it was something like you would see in a movie. And it’s because of who they were.”
When asked whether he still trains himself, the man who holds black belts in eight different styles said he “never really stopped”.
“I am a nerd with martial arts. I enjoy training. I try to train with some of the best people, who are at the top of their game.”
He outlined kickboxing star turned UFC fighter Gokhan Saki as one of his favorite fighters.
— FIGHTMAG (@fightmag) May 5, 2017
Importantly, a role model for many, Michael Jai White outlined that “through education, you can live a life of your dreams.”
In addition, his list of “the most legit toughest actors in Hollywood” includes the likes of Chuck Norris, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Jackie Chan.
In October, Michael Jai White returns to the small screen on CW’s Arrow Season 7. He portrays Ben Turner aka Bronze Tiger in the first episode “Inmate 4587”, appearing shoulder to shoulder with Stephen Amell (Green Arrow) and Kirk Acevedo (Ricardo Diaz).