Former NFL great, Herschel Walker, announced that he planned to enter the world of mixed martial arts (MMA) months ago. Now, he’s gearing up for his first, official fight.
Walker signed a contract MMA promotion Strikeforcein September to compete in their heavyweight division, and is now set to enter the octagon for his first fight on January 30th.
“I wouldn’t have gotten in to this if I didn’t know I could do it,” Walker told the San Jose’s Mercury News. “I can fight.”
Walker is fifth-degree black belt in tae kwon do, and has been training at the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, California for quite some time.
The NFL Hall of Famer says he’s in great shape, and could even play in the NFL today if he wanted to. While he doesn’t need the money or publicity, Walker says he does need the competition. He’s actually donating the money he earns from the upcoming fight to charity.
“I could still play football today,” Walker said. “Now I couldn’t take every snap. I’ve slowed down a little bit, but I’m still faster than 80 percent of the guys in the league. That’s why I know I can step in to the cage.”
If you doubt Walker’s skills, his trainer says you should think again.
“I understand why people would hear that he wants to fight and say, ‘Yeah, right,’ ” said American Kickboxing Academy head trainer Javier Mendez told the paper. “But he’s not a 47-year-old man. He’s got the body of a 20-year-old. He’s absolutely ripped. He’s not normal. He’s one of a kind.”
The upcoming match is set to air on Showtime. However, his opponent has yet to be announced.