Q&A: Randy Francis of Reality Fightingby Brian Woodman Jr. on 07/02/19
Amateur Randy Francis's recent ground-and-pound victory over Mike Placentini during a featherweight bout at Reality Fighting's latest event at Mohegan Sun was just part of an evening that included nearly all fast-finishes. Francis secured a TKO win at 2:58 in the first round after two losses earlier this year.
We chatted with Francis about his background and potential future.
Q: To what do you credit with your recent win at Reality Fighting?
A: I credit my friends at Strike Zone MMA, Thornton’s MMA, and my family for all the love and support they have given me.
Q: How did your interest in MMA begin?
A: I've always had an interest in martial arts as a child but didn't get into it until I was 15. I think around 2012 I went to my first MMA event, Reality Fighting, and was intrigued. I had already been training for a couple years and I thought it was really cool and my goal from that point on was to do at least one fight.
Q: Did you start with a particular style or general MMA? What was the progression? How long have you trained with your current gym? What was your first gym? Where else have you trained?
A: I started at a dojo that did a variation of Muay Thai and Krav Maga. I didn't like the place I was at because no one actually earned their belts like you do in an art like Jiu-jitsu. You could only test about once every two months and you only had to have something like 22 class attendances to advance. My skills quickly advanced and I found myself out performing higher belts but was frustrated that I was stuck at a lower belt. This lead me to find a traditional boxing gym in 2013 where there were no belts and it was all about skills. At that gym I had few boxing smokers and I met a couple people that also trained at strike zone and they got me into MMA and Jiu-jitsu in about 2014/2015. In 2015 I would go into to compete in my first MMA fight but I had lost which lit a fire in me and drove me to train hard. Then I won my next fight via TKO in Mohegan Sun which got me addicted and I haven't stopped since.
Q: Are there other fighters that you particular emulate? Are there any that you enjoy watching?
A: I honestly don’t really have a favorite fighter because I don’t really have time to watch fights. I really only watch the fights of fellow New England fighters at local shows. I do really enjoy watching the lower weight classes (flyweight-lightweight) in the UFC though when I do have a chance to get out.
Q: What are you future goals in combat sports? Are you planning on going professional?
A: I try to make small goals as I progress. I do plan on going pro, but I'm also in no rush either. Right now I just want to focus on continuously improving myself as a fighter.
Q: Do you have a day job?
A: Yes I work full time at Electric Boat as an apprentice designing nuclear submarines for the Navy.
Q: Do you have any advice for aspiring fighters?
A: Eat clean, wrestle, and do not rush into fights. Study your opponents, keep your weight on point and work on your wrestling. Wrestling is without a doubt the most important fundamental for MMA. If you cannot take your opponents down or defend take downs you will be in big trouble in the cage.