I chanced upon a really amazing video today, so amazing and inspirational that I decided to take time and do a blog about it!! I can't remember who posted it on their facebook page, but I'm glad I clicked on it and watched it. It's a documentary about the late MMA Fighter, Evan Tanner, titled "Once I Was A Champion."
I've been watching some other videos on Evan Tanner and all I can say is "WOW!!" , I really cant wait for the documentary to be released! I'm a huge fan of watching movies and documentaries that are based on REAL,TRUE LIFE stories. I think there's so much you can learn from stuff like that....good or bad....
Anyways, for those that know me personally... They all know I'm not a big fan of MMA. I can probably name you about a handful of fighters!! I have alot of respect for the sport of MMA and their fighters. (some of em!). They are probably the most amazing athletes that push their bodies to the utmost physical capabilities!! I do alot of their strength and conditioning workouts for my fights and trust me it isn't the slightest bit easy or enjoyable at times!... Plus I would say that MMA is by far one of the most LETHAL and most PRACTICAL martial arts.
However, after today I can add another MMA fighters name to my handful! Evan Tanner. The documentary isn't as much about Evan Tanner's fighting, it wasn't about the fame, the glory and all that he achieved from MMA. In a way, the documentary told of the man that Evan Tanner was but more importantly it was about "a message"... a message/purpose that he believed he was suppose to share. He believed he was fighting not just for the sake of fame,fortune and glory...but he was fighting to win, to be a champion and when he was a champion, he would have fans/audience....an audience that would listen...and listen to his message and they would then pass on this message! I know it sounds all fucking tree-hugger, ganja smoking, hippyish, strange and even weird....but I do believe that things happen, and it all happens for a reason.
When I hurt myself during the filming of Contender, on day 1 dislocating my right shoulder....then hurting myself later on in my fight against Zidov by disclocating my left shoulder for the first time! I honestly thought my career in muaythai was over, my dreams were never to be accomplished and that I would only be known for being this loser on the show. I had no insurance. I didn't have alot of money. I didn't know how or what was gonna happen. I had always fought with not punching coz of my right shoulder, but to try and fight without punching with both shoulders....I'm as good as a sitting duck!! I remember saying,"The show was a dream come true, but a nightmare of a way to end." I remember being in tears for days and upset as hell. I didn't know what was gonna happen. I couldn't believe all this was happening to me. =(
I remember after everything settled down , I said that I couldn't and wouldn't give up so easily. Then strangely, insurance came through from the filming company and it covered surgery on BOTH shoulders. (The first incident was bloody their fault anyway!!!!) I started from ZERO after surgery, barely being able to dress myself at times! I took about 4 or 5 months of physio,strength training,correctional work and finally when I was stronger I started my muaythai training again. Then later I was for some reason voted and asked to have my rematch with Zidov at the Finals of Contender Asia, held at the indoor stadium infront of 7000 people and televised to millions! =) So "YES", I do believe that things happen, and it all happens for a reason!!!
Evan Tanner filmed these two videos and it was only posted after he died. He said in these two videos how he felt that fighting was just a stepping stone and that it would all lead to something big, something he didn't know that was yet to come. Now that UFC and MMA has basically now taken the world by storm and with him passed away, maybe this documentary was the way his message was to be told, maybe this was the "something bigger" he had always believed in. Some people say "you become even more famous when you are dead"... I mean look at Martin Luther King, Jr, JFK, John Lennon, Kurt Cobain, Princess Diana, Elvis.... names that you will never forget....now hopefully Evan Tanner and his message will not be forgotten too.
Watching these videos really made my day. I wish I could have met him. A real inspiration, Evan Tanner, you, your legacy and your message will never be forgotten. R.I.P.
Hope you guys enjoyed the video too!