Tyson Nam: The Flyin’ Hawaiian

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Fresh off a 32 second knockout of Zarrukh Adashev, Tyson Nam is in control of his own destiny now. With a fight against Matt Schnell coming up on UFC Vegas 10, he’s ready to put the flyweights on the map even more after his highlight finish.

Hailing from Hawaii with so many great fighters like BJ Penn, Max Holloway, and Ray Cooper III, fighting is in the blood of the state’s residents. Nam has always held an interest in combat sports and it was just that that got him suckered into the sport that would put him on the whirlwind path towards the UFC.

“It was peer pressure. I was always interested in boxing and kickboxing. After a month of training, the school that was going to was like, ‘Hey, want to do a fight next weekend?’ I was like, ‘Sure. Why not?’ Fourteen, fifteen years later, here I am.”

Tyson Nam lives the good life in Hawaii. His hobbies are all the typical Hawaii things. But he’s a huge fan of one thing in specific: BBQ.

“In Hawaii, there’s always something good to do. We have 275 days of sunshine out of the year, and when it’s cold, it’s still warm. You got the beach, BBQ’s, movies. We don’t live in tepees out here in Hawaii. We do have normal civilizations out here. We got hikes, we have water holes to jump in, we have everything except snow.”

As far as the best BBQ in Hawaii, Tyson Nam says it’s not where you go, but who you’re with. Unfortunately with the pandemic, Nam isn’t happy that the governor of Hawaii still has beaches closed down.

“Any place that you can set it up, at a friend’s house, at the beach is always a plus. As of right now, beaches, parks and everything is closed because our governor sucks.”

Tyson Nam Training For UFC Vegas 10

With UFC Vegas 10 around the corner, Tyson Nam is in full preparation mode. Training for a fight, especially at the level Nam is at, is a full-time job. While he trains to the bone during the week, weekends are a bit light, but training and conditioning are still there.

“Saturday’s we just do a little bit of a run. On the weekdays, Monday through Friday, we train so hard. I really do need the weekends off just like a normal job. My body can only take so much even beyond physically, but mentally. I need to get away from the gym life on weekends and start fresh again on Monday.”

Nam’s fight with Schnell was announced pretty early, way back in July. “The announced our fight pretty early, I was wondering why they announced it so early,” he said. But, Nam called for the Schnell fight after his win at UFC Vegas 2 and he got what he wished for.

As far as training under the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, Nam mentioned earlier that Hawaii was still quite locked down. But he has still been able to work and has done so with proper precautions. Nam has a pretty specific threat to anyone that puts his camp in jeopardy.

“We make due with what we can. I still have my normal training partners. We just make sure we’re not out and about. Ain’t no one trying to give me COVID, because that would suck. I would probably punch someone square in the face if they gave me COVID and canceled my UFC fight. All of my training partners, we’re staying healthy, we’re staying away from strangers and we just train.”

Pressure on His Shoulders

When Tyson Nam got the call from the UFC, the moment was tremendous. But, Nam ran into some snags in his first two fights. In all fairness, Nam jumped in the deep end with some killers. He dropped his first two fights to Sergio Pettis and Kai Kara-France. Nam thought it was the end of the road after his loss to Kara-France.

“I thought I would have got my pink slip after losing my second fight even though it was to two top ten contenders in the world. At the same time, me coming in later in my career, if I’m not making a dent, I thought I would just be announced. But they did give me a blessing of giving me a third fight and I thought everything was on top of the line for that.”

Nam continues to be thankful for his third opportunity. He feels like he’s in the right spot and fans can expect fireworks from here on out from the flyweight division.

“Even this fight, every fight is on top of the line when you’re in the UFC. If you’re not making waves, then it’s on to the next one in my eyes. Especially in the flyweight division. Now that we have Cody Garbrandt in the division, and the flyweights in general, we’re a lot more exciting than people make it out to be. Maybe a few years before, we didn’t see a lot of one strike knockouts like in the heavier weight classes. But as of recent, we’ve just been putting people away.”

Saving the Flyweights

At the dawn of the ESPN era, Henry Cejudo defeated TJ Dillashaw and saved the flyweight division. With the 125ers seemingly on Dana White’s chopping block, Cejudo ran through Dillashaw, retaining his belt and saving the division. Nam feels that the flyweights are here to stay and thinks that the division has some heavy hitters in their ranks now.

“Henry Cejudo did single handedly save the division. He even changed his whole character and persona while he was on top of the camera to make things interesting and stir up the pot to put the flyweights on top of the map. We got a lot of heavy hitters coming up in the top ten and even out of the top ten. I don’t know what it is. I don’t really know why, maybe they were revamping and that’s why they got rid of a lot of the flyweights. I’m just lucky that I’m here right here and right now.”

Predicting UFC 255

With UFC 255 to happen on November 21, the flyweights take the stage as Deiveson Figueiredo defends his newly captured belt against former bantamweight champion, Cody Garbrandt. Figuerido captured his belt at UFC Fight Island 2. Tyson Nam is putting his bets on the flyweight fighter.

“I think Figueiredo wins. This is Cody’s first fight at 125 and he’s great, he is a former world champion. But at the same time, if it’s your first time, you don’t exactly know how your body’s going to feel. You don’t know the true potential of your body. So, that might play a little factor in it, but I think Figueiredo wins it if he makes weight as well.”

Tyson Nam returns to action to make another move in the action-packed flyweight division and deliver another knockout. Follow Nam on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to follow his journey through the flyweight division.

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