Angel Fight Promotions will close out 2017 with their final show of the year on Dec. 15 from Kings Nightclub in Clarksville, Tenn. Labeled “Rising Stars”, the main event of the card features a pro welterweight matchup as North Carolina’s Nickalas Martino travels into enemy territory to challenge local rising talent James Conway. We caught up with Nick before the fight to get his thoughts on Conway, find out more about his background and his goals in the sport. In the process we also learned he does a pretty mean Matthew McConaughey impression. Check it out.
Hi Nick, thanks for talking with us at Pro MMA Now. You have a main event fight against James Conway coming up in a couple weeks, how are preparations going for that?
Preparations for my fight are going well. Camp has been pretty good with now injuries. Only downside was coming down with a cold, but sometimes you just have to push through.
How much do you know about Conway and what is your assessment of him?
I’ve researched him a bit. Seems pretty well rounded. Decent striking, wrestling and submission game. He’s a southpaw which works for me. In all 4 of my pro fights, I’ve fought southpaws.
Style-wise, how do you see you two matching up?
It’ll be a fun one. He seems to be a bit of a pressure fighter, while I’m more rangy and technical. Should be a fun chess match.
How do you see the fight playing out when you visualize it and how does it end?
I’ve honestly stopped visualizing anything but getting my hand raised. I will attempt to take the quickest path to victory. Whatever opening he gives me, I will do my best to capitalize on.
Any reservations about coming into “enemy territory” to face Conway on his own turf?
Haha! I’m always in “enemy territory”. I haven’t fought at home since 2011. Needless to say, it really doesn’t bother me. I have a degree in acting, so I don’t ever notice the crowd.
Where are you from and where do you train?
I was born in Florida, and moved to North Carolina when I was 10. I train out of Combat Athletics in Mocksville, N.C.
What got you into MMA and what is your athletic background?
I started with karate when I was 13. Eventually got my 5th degree black belt, then got a 2nd degree black belt in taekwondo. Branched into BJJ about 7 years ago, and decided to try MMA at 18. I’ve been doing it pretty much ever since.
What are your goals in the sport?
My goal in MMA is to continue to challenge myself. I enjoy fighting, and will try to climb as high up the ladder as I can. My dream is to train fighters. I would love to open my own gym one day.
What keeps you busy when you aren’t training or fighting?
When I’m not fighting, I’m usually playing video games with my wife, reading, hiking, or auditioning for the occasional play. Also messing around with celebrity impressions which people can check out on my YouTube page (Nick Martino).