LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, September 17, 2012 – Sin City’s “12-Gauge” Paige VanZant returns to Texas this Saturday night when she takes on Amber Stautzenberger at Premier Fight Series 2, set for the LaGrave Stadium in Fort Worth.
Despite the fact that Paige is a born and bred resident of Nevada, first in Reno before moving to Las Vegas, she might as well be a Texas fighter as a pro after debuting at the UWF Tournament of Warriors Finale in Corpus Christi this past June – winning a split decision over Jordan Gaza.
According to her, she had so much fun both in the cage and outside of it that she had to come back again.
That opportunity arose with this bout against Stautzenberger.
Though she’ll be fighting a hometown favorite for the second time in a row here in Texas, she’s hoping to put on a performance that will win her some more fans and respect, both here in the lone star state and nationally as well.
TXMMA recently caught up with Ms. VanZant to get her thoughts on the upcoming bout.
Interview – Paige VanZant (House of RYU)
Paige tell us a little bit about yourself. Did you always want to be a fighter?
I actually never had any intentions to fight. Although I did grow up in the country riding dirt bikes and shooting, I was into all of the girlier sports. I was a dancer for 13 years and cheerleader in high school. I didn’t even know about the sport of MMA until my dad started getting into it. My dad was a wrestler all throughout high school and for some of college so that is what got him started in the sport of MMA. He came to me one day and asked me to try a MMA class with him at one of the local gyms and I ended up falling in love with the sport.
What was the experience like this past June at UWF and how does it feel to be coming to Texas to fight again?
My experience fighting in Texas on June 29th was amazing. I was not sure what to expect because it was my pro debut. But along with having a successful first fight I had the most fun time meeting all of the people in Corpus Christi and meeting all of the other fighters. The people could not have been more genuine and kind.
What have you been up to since that fight? You moved out to Las Vegas right?
I did move to Vegas. I wanted to find a gym that was going to get me more focused on making fighting a career instead of just a sport. I have been training very hard and I have really been focusing on my technique and becoming more well-rounded as a MMA fighter.
Who are you training with out there?
I am currently fighting at the House of RYU with the RYU team as well as the Dogboxer team. My main coach at the moment is Ron Fraiser. He is amazing! The transformation to a new gym could not have gone better.
Who are you outside the cage? Can you describe what everyday life?
Outside of the cage I am just the typical girl. I love to get my nails done and going shopping. I love going to the movies and hitting the town with friends. Right now I live in Vegas and all of my friends live in Reno so I have a lot of time to just fight and focus on training.
What are your goals in this next fight? What do you want to show the world?
My goal for this next fight is to just go out there and do my best. I treat every fight as another day in the gym. I would love to show the world that women can be tough and powerful just like men. I want girls to know that when they are being picked on or bullied that they can make it all stop. It’s all about standing up for yourself and what you believe in. If I can make just one girl stand up for herself and fight back then I feel that I have been a successful in my MMA career.
What do you know about your opponent, Amber Stautzenberger?
I don’t know a lot about Amber but she is a very tough athlete and she is a very nice person. I think that she and I are going to be very good role models in female MMA. I do know that we will both put on a good fight and show the world what girls are made of.
Any predictions? What type of fight can the fans expect?
No predictions here. I think the fans should be ready for an amazing fight. We are both very tough athletes and have been training very hard.
Any last words for the Texas fans on why they should come watch you fight?
Any last words for the sponsors or anybody else?
I want to thank Jesus Christ first and foremost. He got me to where I am today and will keep guiding me through my fighting career. I want to thank my sponsors Respect Fight Gear, Outlaw Fight Gear, Babes Of MMA, the RUY team, Ron Fraiser, Addison Management and of course my parents for all of the support.