Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux fighter primed for next matchup
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
More on: david michaud, native sun news, oglala sioux, south dakota
|The following story was written and reported by Brandon Ecoffey, Native Sun News Managing Editor. All content © Native
David ‘Bull Dawg’ Michaud (right) is bringing the dynamite he carries in both hands down to the light weight division. Photo COURTESY/Ultimate Fighting Championship
‘Bull Dawg’ drops to lower weight limit
By Brandon Ecoffey
Native Sun News Managing Editor
RAPID CITY—The pride of Pine Ridge, David “Bull Dawg” Michaud, is primed and ready to make his second appearance for Victory Fighting Championships on Nov. 2, in Rapid City.
The longtime welterweight who has fought as high as heavyweight during his professional MMA career is making a move towards the lightweight division in the hopes of catching the eye of the UFC.
“I want to win this fight, get down to 155 lbs., win the title there, and then get signed by the UFC. The last three guys who have won the title at 155 for Victory have all been immediately called up and that is what I want to do,” said Michaud.
As an amateur Michaud dominated the local scene where he earned a reputation as a hard hitting and highly skilled wrestler who came into fights with one goal: “To finish fights.”
Prior to his debut in Victory a few short months ago none of his opponents made it to the final bell. In his last fight Michaud defeated Mark Scudder at 170 lbs. to move to 5-0 as a professional. The fight that went to a decision was the first in his young career where he did not finish the fight early. In the second round Scudder landed a huge lead elbow that dropped Michaud and forced him to encounter the first real adversity he had seen inside of the cage during his professional career.
The fight that promoter Ryan Stoddard called “the fight of night” and inspired him to say “I wish David Michaud and Mark Scudder could fight on every show for the rest of Victory’s history,” saw the heavy handed Michaud land big strikes throughout, but did highlight the difficulties that the Oglala Sioux Fighter is forced to overcome at 170 lb. due to his height (5’7”), despite having a technical advantage in most parts of the game.
Although Michaud did end up closing Scudders eye and landing multiple power shots that would have put down most fighters. Michaud was forced to take a few big shots while working his way inside of Scudder’s reach despite working angles that should have been advantageous to him. The realization that Michaud may be just a bit undersized for the division sparked the move towards lightweight.
“The way the sport is going now is that most people fighting at 170 lbs. are over six-foot tall and it is hard for me to get inside on them. So I think that moving down would be the best fit for me.”
The dilemma for Michaud however is that although this fight will be fought at a catch weight of 165 lbs. is that prior to his last fight he had to cut down from 220lbs just to make weight at 170. As the fight drew near he was still close to 25 pounds overweight in the last 10 days leading up to it.
Although Michaud did make weight, the significant cut seemed to have an impact on the former South Dakota State Champion wrestler, he began to gas early after the initial adrenalin dump he experienced fighting in front of the largest crowd in the history of MMA in South Dakota.
In the fight he was forced to draw upon the support of the highly supportive hometown crowd inside of the Rapid City Civic Center’s ice arena for his late burst of energy. In the third round Michaud would dig deep and return to his wrestling base to secure the decision victory.
According to Michaud however, the cut was not as much of a factor in his conditioning as was his early return from a knee injury he suffered while competing on the Ultimate Fighter TV show.
“When I tore my ACL I let myself balloon up to 225 lbs. and I think that I came back from that injury too soon. It was seven and a half months after surgery that I fought and it bothered me. I was lacking the spring I am used to and I could not explode in and out of the pocket like I am used to,” he told Native Sun News just days after the fight.
Now less than three weeks out from the fight Michaud is close to 185 lbs. and says that he will be within 15 lbs. of 165 going in to the last week and that his cut will be far easier this time around.
“I am going to take off a little bit more weight in the next week and then I will drop the last 15 the week of the fight. That really won’t be a problem. I have seen the guys who I have been around from the UFC and what they do as far as weight so I should be ok,” he said.
This will be the lightest weight that Michaud has competed at since his sophomore year of high school. The now 25 year old Lakota will look to bring his thundering power down to the lighter divisions where his wrestling and strength should give him a significant advantage against a majority of the fighters he will encounter.
In the UFC other wrestlers have found great success in fighting at lower weights after first fighting heavier. Recently highly decorated wrestler Mark Munoz moved down from heavyweight to fight at 170 and the great lightweight Frankie Edgar dropped from 155 to 145 in the hopes of matching their body type with the right weight division. The move seems to be a success for Munoz and Edgar and the 5’7” Michaud hopes to emulate what they have done.
Standing in Michaud’s way is Richard Villa a brawler and product of Team Roswell from Roswell, NM who just last week signed the contract to step in to the cage.
Despite the level of talent that exists within the Victory organization that provides a steady stream of talent for the UFC, Michaud feels that fighting for his people on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation gives him an advantage that gets him through any sticking points in his training or in the cage.
“When people are always coming up to you and telling you that they support you it gets me through those training sessions where I am not having a good day. It feels good to know that people believe in you and I do not want to let them down.”
For fans in Pine Ridge you can purchase tickets to the event from Wes Bettelyoun and for those not from Pine Ridge you can log on to cagetix.com.
(Contact Brandon Ecoffey at email@example.com)
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