Surely one of the hottest martial arts prospects currently competing is Jason 'Extreme Z' Zickerman. Jason, who won a recent fight with a first round knockout in 18 seconds, believes he will become a world champion MMA fighter if he continues on his current path of destruction.
Having not lost a fight in eight years, Jason feels it is time to really step up and showcase the kind of skills that have many in the industry heralding him as the next big thing.
As an all around athlete with skills in many areas (he has written and recorded his own rap song), Jason certainly is an interesting person to listen and learn from. In the following interview, he outlines his competition plans and gives, for the first time on any forum, an in-depth look at his life.
[ Q ] Hi Jason. When did you last fight, what was the outcome, and how do you feel about this result?
Hollywood Park Casino; Dec. 17th. My scheduled fighter and his two back-up fighters, cancelled the day of the fight. Within 2 minutes they ended my fight because the weight and strength difference was too much for him (I weighed in 7 lbs. heavier than my opponent).
[ Q ] When is your next fight and how are you preparing for it?
Most likely March. Still working on the details. I always prepare with the same hard training style.
[ Q ] I understand you have experience in various arts. When did you begin fighting, and what was your initial style?
I began at 11-years old. I picked up an American style of kickboxing.
[ Q ] What is the main style you use today?
| What Is Muay Thai?
Muay Thai is the Thai name for an indigenous form of martial art practiced in several southeast Asian countries including Cambodia (where it is known as Pradal Serey) and Myanmar where it is generally known as Lethwei.
Traditional Muay Thai has a long history in Thailand as a martial art used by the military. The military style of Muay Thai is called Lerdrit, while today's "Sport Muay Thai" slightly varies from the original art and uses kicks and punches in a ring and with gloves similar to those used in boxing. Muay Thai is referred to as "The Science of Eight Limbs", as the hands, feet, elbows and knees are all used extensively in this art.
[ Q ] Give me a rundown of your fighting career thus far.
My first fight was short and powerful! 18 seconds to be precise. After that, my first sanctioned fight fell through. My original fighter called the day of the fight and said he cut or hurt his hand the night before ... So I have still not been given the opportunity to really showcase my skills. As far as all my fights are concerned, I've not lost a fight in eight years.
[ Q ] What do you feel has been the greatest fighting moment for you?
21-years old, in Japan, drunk and studying Muay Thai. Four men tried to jump me - yes I said "tried." Enough said. After that I felt like Superman meets Van Damme.
[ Q ] Who has influenced you throughout your career?
Lennox Lewis, Ken Shamrock, Jet Li, Wanderlei Silva and Chuck Liddell.
| Lennox Lewis:
Lennox Claudius Lewis (born 2 September, 1965 in West Ham, London, England) is an English former boxer, who represented Canada in the Olympics and was a former heavyweight champion.
[ Q ] Your nickname is "Extreme." Why was such a name chosen for you?
They call me "Extreme" because I love extreme sports. Snowboarding, wake-skateboarding, rock climbing and every other sport you can name! Pretty much any adrenaline pumping, nerve shattering experience I can get my hands on.
[ Q ] What advantages do you have as a fighter?
One of my biggest advantages is an 8-year bodybuilding background. Because I've weight trained every muscle on my body, everything ties in stronger than any man in my weight class. I've yet to find a man under 205 pounds to match my strength.
[ Q ] Are there any areas you would like to work on?
Everything; I know I can be 100 times better. I have all the skills to become one of the greats, I just need to harness the experience it takes to become one.
[ Q ] What is it about martial arts you enjoy most?
I'd have to say the knockout. It's just such a magical moment. The yin and the yang. Damage to one man, and a victory that builds confidence and self-worth in the other. It's an equal balance. The reason why I don't feel bad for the guy who got knocked out is he had the same intentions, and would have celebrated the same as the victor.
[ Q ] Do you have a favorite technique? What is your fight strategy?
Due to the fact that a future opponent might read this interview, I won't reveal my favorite technique. But I will tell you I try to relax and breathe, until I see my money shot. Then release my power. You can't rush a knockout: It comes when it comes.
[ Q ] Could you provide me with an example of an average days training?
Normally I wake up and slam a protein shake, and go for a 45-minute run. Then I drive to either my boxing or kickboxing class - whichever comes first that day. I kickbox for 1.5-2 hours. Box for an hour, maybe a little longer. And finally I finish the day up with either weight training or soft sand running. If I'm lucky, I have time to sit in a hot tub.
[ Q ] What is your eating plan when preparing for a fight?
I eat only chicken breast, turkey breast or fish; green vegetables, almonds and a tiny bit of fruit. Nothing else.
[ Q ] Do you take supplements? If so, which ones and why?
None. Ridiculed daily, I'm the only athlete I know that does not take any supplements. I honestly believe God provided everything I need to repair and be strong. Meat, vegetables, fruit and nuts.
[ Q ] Who do you admire among today's martial arts champions, and why?
Definitely Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Chuck Liddell. These two fighters bring so much energy, style and personality to the ring that they stand out even among the greatest champions ever. When you hear either of those names, you know it's going to be a fun card to watch.
| Floyd Mayweather Jr.:
Floyd Mayweather Jr. (born February 24, 1977, Grand Rapids, MI) is rated by Ring Magazine as the No. 1 pound-for-pound boxer in the world. He is the son of former welterweight contender Floyd Mayweather Sr., who currently is the trainer of Oscar de la Hoya. Mayweather Jr.'s trainer is his uncle, Roger Mayweather; neither Floyd Jr. nor Roger speak with Floyd Sr. Mayweather Jr. attended Ottawa Hills High School in Grand Rapids, Mich.
As a featherweight, Mayweather won a bronze medal in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. Mayweather lost by a controversial decision in his semi-final bout against silver medalist Serafim Todorov of Bulgaria. Nearly everyone who saw the bout, including the referee, thought that Mayweather had won. However, the international judges, whom U.S. boxing coach Al Mitchell called "a bunch of mobsters," ruled the bout 10-9 for Todorov.
"I'm running my mouth a lot and I'm looking for a guy to shut me up. If you don't shut me up I'm going to keep running my mouth." - Floyd Mayweather Jr.
[ Q ] Who do you consider to be the greatest martial artist of all time, and why?
I'm convinced that a man with no name, and a bald head, in some monastery on top of an almost unreachable mountain, had centuries of knowledge since birth at his fingertips is the best. The sad part is we'll never know his name or where he's from.
[ Q ] How far do you think you can go in your chosen martial art?
Having known since I was 10-years old, I wanted to be a world champion, I think I can go as far as I want to. The pioneers of mixed martial arts have already paved the road.
Now it's time to let the new breed of athlete (me), take over and show the world what physical potential this sport has. Eventually the next generation will blow through that barrier. Thus making martial arts one of the world's oldest progressive sports.
[ Q ] What are your goals (both martial arts and otherwise)?
Plain and simple to become world champion! Also I'd like to implement a real nutrition class system into the L.A.U.S.D. and eventually spread the idea, as opposed to reading a food pyramid with a bread group. My own dojo sounds pretty appealing as well.
|WHAT'S YOUR GOAL?|
[ Q ] Is there anyone you would like to thank (sponsors, fans, trainers)?
Huge thanks to all my past and present trainers (Robert Santiago, Stuart Caswell and Val Leedy). Kaisen nutrition, Fitnet USA, True Image Concepts and Gold's gym.
[ Q ] Thanks Jason. All the best in your career.
Note From Vance McDaniel www.trueimageconcepts.com:
I decided to take the role of manager because Jason is one of a kind. "A true all around athlete as well as performer." Outside of the ring, Jason is a fantastic snowboarder, skateboarder and has even completed and recorded a rap song. We are currently building an internet broadcast show, which will showcase his talents as well as introduce X-treme sports in a new an exciting way. More to come on that.
All I can say is, watch out for this guy, he is moving at light speed, with a passion for life and adventure like no other. Bottom line: he is having fun and looking good while doing it. He truly has all of the tools required for success!