Welcome everyone to the exclusive interview with Bellator MMA & XKO light heavyweight champion, Rashad Coulter. In the interview with Rashad we talk about how it all got started, dating back to when he first had interest in the world of MMA. Also featured in the interview we go into detail about his run in Bellator MMA as well as winning the XKO light heavyweight championship. You can reach out to Rashad on Twitter by click here.
Justin David Kish: Thank you so much for taking the time to do the interview Rashad, how are things going for you today?
Rashad Coulter: What’s going down man? I’m doing great. Thanks for having me.
Justin David Kish: First lets go back to where it all started, what got you interested into mixed martial arts?
Rashad Coulter: I’ve been a fan of MMA since 93 but I literally was sitting at my apartment smoking and drinking watching fights and told some of my friends I willing to bet I can do this and knock one of these dudes out. So I grew up with Muhammed Lawal (King Mo) and he called me out the blue one day, as we were catching up he was telling me how he was in Cali at team quest and he referred me to a gym and I went and checked it out. But I wasn’t serious so I moved to Houston in 2006 and went back to smoking and drinking. HAHAHAHA.
Justin David Kish: Who do you cite as your inspiration into MMA?
Rashad Coutler: Mo, I can say because his persistence is what made me actually walk into a gym. And seeing his success in t he sport after knowing how we was growing up. Made me believe it was actually possible.
Justin David Kish: According to Sherdog, you did not have any reported ameratur bouts. Did you have any ameratur bouts that have not gone on record?
Rashad Coulter: I didn’t have any amateur fights. I trained for almost a full year and had my 1st pro fight in 2011.
Justin David Kish: It was in 2011 that you decided to go pro in Mixed Martial Arts. Why did you feel it was time to jump straight into pro-mma fights early?
Rashad Coulter: It was my coach Sayif Saud’s idea. I had been training with him after I left Saekson Janjira’s gym and he felt I was ready and he said he wanted me to make some money for my sons because I am a single dad so he said it’s time to fight.
Justin David Kish: Before we get into your current career path, you got the nickname “Daywalker” how did you get that nickname and what was the background about it?
Rashad Coulter: HAHAHAHA Well, When Mo got back from Japan we was sitting around his condo making darkskin/lightskin jokes about eachother and he said “Man you are the whitest black person I know. He said you are pale as a vampire only difference is you can walk in sunlight. So Imma call you “Daywalker” and all my homeboys thought that was the funniest thing ever so him and everyone call me “Daywalker”. Mo is notorious for giving people nicknames bro. He’s a straight clown.
Justin David Kish: You opened up your pro career with huge victories over Manuel Rodriguez, Alfredo Ayala and Chase Watson. Take us back and tell us which fighter really took you to your limits?
Rashad Coulter: Really the Chase Watson fight because I took that fight on a 2 day notice and he wanted to fight at a catchweight so I had to cut 17 pounds in 2 days. Never wrestling I really didn’t know how to cut weight so I just didn’t eat and sat in a sauna. Terrible mistake. But as I was fighting him I thru a right body kick in round 1 and broke my foot in round 1 so I fought til 3rd round with a broke foot and still got TKO but I was so weak from that bad weight cut.
Justin David Kish: After opening up 3-0 in your career you sustained your first loss in MMA and that was against Derek Perkins. How did you go about the loss and how were you able to rebound from it?
Rashad Coulter: It motivated me even though I separated my shoulder after I took him down he submitted me w a kimura on same shoulder I separated. So from that loss I trained and scratched back extra hard I even won a jiu-jitsu tournament after that. It taught me to always trust God and never doubt his word because that minute of doubt will leave a small crack for the enemy to come in play on your mind.
Justin David Kish: After your first loss you rebounded with a victory over Alex Madrid and following the victory you were contacted by Bellator MMA. How excited were you to be contacted by Scott Coker and Bellator? What was that phone call like?
Rashad Coulter: I was extremely excited. My coach called me and said You are fighting for Bellator and asked for my email address so they can send me a contract. But I was floored when I got contract I said it’s time to make them remember me.
Justin David Kish: Take us through your first fight with your 1st Bellator fight against Jeremiah O’Neal?
Rashad Coulter: I was nervous because it was on such a big stage and I wanted to make a good showing. I knew I had to be patient. I got the only TKO of the night. So as soon as I won it was so dominant, Coker himself called me over and said he was impressed and shook my hand and told me he will be seeing me again. I had the only TKO on the card t hat night so it was great feeling.
Justin David Kish: Following your win over O’Neal you went back to XKO and earlier this month you became the promotions first ever Light Heavyweight champion. How does it feel to be apart of the promotions history as their first light heavyweight champion?
Rashad Coulter: I love it man XKO treats me well and now I am apart of something that can never be done again which is be the 1st light heavyweight champion.
Justin David Kish: It is now May 11th do you have any current upcoming fights or any offered fights from Bellator or XKO?
Rashad Coulter: I will be boxing may 24th just got a call today. I was trying to fight for XKO heavyweight title June 25th but we going to see what the guy says if he takes the fight. We are in the works as well for Bellator when they come back to Winstar Casino.
Justin David Kish: Before we let you go, you train out of Octagon MMA which his home to guys like Sean Spencer, Damon Jackson and Jesse Palmer. How has the coaching staff at Octagon MMA really improve you as fighter?
Rashad Coulter: The coaching is everything. I mean I am a natural athlete but I am winning in a sport I knew nothing about as far as martial arts go and to be beating guys who have done some kind of martial arts their entire life is all do to my coaches Sayif Sud, Eric Schambari and my boxing coach Nate Pipitone.
Justin David Kish: Lastly, Do you have any advice for aspiring ameratur fighters wanting to turn pro?
Rashad Coulter: I would tell them you are only going to get out of it what you put in it. If you are a guy who only trains when you have a fight on books you will not succeed Always look for ways to learn and improve your game. Write down what you learn and wrestle as much as you can. HAHAHAHA. Last I would say be you out there fight your style not how someone wants you to fight until you find you, you wont be comfortable in there and have fun. Cardio cardio cardio.