What Legends Are Born Of – Dominic Mazzotta
Dominic Mazzotta. Some fighters get tense and restless leading up to the biggest fight of their life. Then there are the guys that are too chill to be tense and restless.
Enter Dominic Mazzotta into the latter. As this local Pittsburgh blogger and podcaster noticed, nerves are certainly not something that this fighter is battling. Not by a long shot.
Strolling through the hotel lobby at the Mohegan Sun in Montville, CT on his way to breakfast, Mazzotta was stopped by this familiar face… a face that he met only once, after Pinnacle FC 15, and they had the interview that never happened.
You see, I had the opportunity after the event to interview Dominic. It was a great on camera interview and we were pumped. Dominic is a young man who is going places in MMA and we were able to capture the “before they were famous” interview.
Make no mistake about it, Dom is famous in and around the Pittsburgh and Western PA area. And he is famous among hardcore regional MMA fans. But his true fame is still ahead.
And we captured that interview. Octagon 24/7 was going places too. Only one thing. Due to a camera malfunction, the interview that took place was left for dead. It was only an interview by memory. The disappointment of that moment was extreme.
So when this familiar face stopped Dominic on his way to breakfast the day of the biggest fight of his life, the cool cat that he is stopped and granted an interview as well as invited us to join him and his cornerman to breakfast.
Certainly A Fighter – Dominic Mazzotta
There are no certainties in MMA. You do not need to follow the sport for any great length of time to know that reality. But there are some things that we can be certain of. We can be certain that Dominic Mazzotta is not nervous for his fight tonight against a very tough, talented, youthful and undefeated AJ McKee. We can be certain that this kid is ready for what is ahead of him. We can be certain that intimidation is not a factor. Nerves are not a factor.
Mazzotta is a fighter at heart. “We used to train so dumb. We used to just go in there and bang all the time. Now we train smarter. I didn’t have any injuries in camp leading up to this fight. Well, one very minor one but nothing to worry about.”
Michael Wilkins, Mazzotta’s cornerman and friend, chimed in when Dom stepped away to use the restroom. “Man, he is so relaxed for his fights but I am way more nervous than him. He drives me crazy. But I am like that too, I lose control when I am cornering instead of fighting and am way more nervous for my fighters than myself.”
Wilkins is a much accomplished MMA fighter as well, sporting a 6-4 record himself, looking to bounce back from a December loss.
Dom has had a long road to this shot at the larger, national promotion that Bellator is. His only blemish on his record is a loss to Cody Garbrandt, the UFC stud who has run through every opponent he has faced in the UFC and is now the Bantamweight champion and appears to be the future of the division. That was a fight that was very early in both of their careers and maybe one that would not have happened but for a chance rejection.
“It’s kinda funny, we were supposed to train together, do some sparring, and I showed up and I had a little ringworm that was covered and everything and his corner cancelled the session.” Dom continued, “I was a little disappointed but am glad that it didn’t happen now, or we could have become friends and less likely to take a fight against each other. I definitely see that as a fight ahead for me, a rematch.”
Mixing It Up With Experience – Dominic Mazzotta
These are the conversation that he was more than willing to have over the second big meal he’s had in weeks. I learned that Dominic is a born-again Christian. “You have a pretty cool job too!” That is what he told me when learning that I work as a ministry director at a church.
This “kid”, and I quote kid because he does have a very youthful face but he is approaching the 30 year mark and his peak days in MMA are just ahead, is going places. What a good guy.
What is he going to do to assure himself that he is going to win tonight? He is, quite simply, going to use the experience that has got him to where he is today to end up with his hand raised at the end. I believe that to be true, even if he is the biggest underdog on the card!