The “thorobred” Enters The Big Race
The "Thorobred" Enters the Big Race
By Jim Genia
For the past year, East Coast MMA fans have watched as Jay Hieron crushed every opponent standing before him in the ring. A former Division I college wrestler who’s honed his grappling under the tutelage of Rodrigo Gracie and who’s polished his striking at Bellmore Kickboxing Academy, Hieron made short work of the local talent, and won a hard-fought battle against Brazilian Top Team-representative Fabio Holanda. There was no doubt the man known as the "Thorobred" was destined for bigger things.
Stepping in for Jason Miller to face Canadian stalwart Georges St. Pierre at UFC 48 in Las Vegas, it seems Hieron’s destiny is now. Hailing from Freeport, Long Island, sporting a 4-0 MMA record, a 2-0 kickboxing record, and possessing a level of submission defense that enables him to dodge a black-belt level jiu-jitsu onslaught, Hieron got the call while in Sin City, helping long-time friend and training partner Phil Baroni get ready for his upcoming bout. I tracked him down there to ask him some questions.
Congrats on getting called up for the UFC. Tell me where you got your wrestling skills?
I’ve been ringside for all your fights, and while you’ve shown off some dominant wrestling skills, you never seem afraid to stand and trade punches. Why’s that?
How’s did you get the news you’d be fighting in the next UFC?
How does it feel?
What do you know of your opponent, Georges St. Pierre?
What’s your gameplan?
Your next fight is going to be in the big show, the UFC – is that going to effect how you train?
Prediction for your UFC debut?
You’ve got a lot of fans rooting for you here on the East Coast. Any words for them?
You’re entering the UFC with only 4 fights under your belt. What do you have to say to all those people who might question whether or not you deserve this shot?
Congratulations again, and good luck.