Hi Reddit! I Nik Lentz...IAmA full time fighter in the UFC and professional nerd! AMA
Hey! My name is Nik Lentz. I'm a full time professional fighter and am employed by the UFC. I just changed weight classes and now fight at 145 lbs. In my off time I play video games way to much (Mostly Starcraft) Below I will post a few questions that people ask me regularly.
How is working with Mike Dolce and getting to 145:
It was crazy, I was walking around at 180 lbs and he was way to “chill” about it. It was around 5 months out from my last fight when I started working with him. He would say, “its going to be easy man!” but in my head I was scared. After being on the diet for a month, my weight was down to around 172. To make a long story short, my weight went down, energy up, got stronger and could train longer. The week before the fight and the final cut was easy. It really was easier than making 155. I don’t understand how he is so good at this, but he is the real deal.
What’s your rank in Starcraft 2?
I have not got to play the last two seasons very much. I have been training so hard and living in a hotel in Florida. Before that I was a Masters Protoss on the NA and EU ladder. I’m supper rusty, but plan to be playing a lot more soon. The wife somehow destroyed my rig while I was staying in Florida…I’m in the process of fixing it now.
You can also talk to me on twitter @NikLentz
One too many punches to the head?
Nik: "On most IQ tests I score between 135 and 141. I score extremely high on spatial-temporal reasoning, as well as math and logic, but on language ability I score just above a mentally handicap."
The truth hurts.......lol
What's your favorite kind of salad dressing?
Blue Cheese and when I'm in fight camp two TBSP of Olive Oil and one TBSP of aged Balsamic Vinegar.
I met you at MLG Columbus After party and sat in front of you for the finals. You are one of the nicest people I've ever met, and I mean no offense when I say I didn't expect the badass MMA fighter to be as nice as you are. ^ No question, just telling you you're awesome.
Awesome! Thank you!!!
Who is your favorite SC2 player and team?
DRG, I like FXO because they have a great story and have worked hard to get where they are
I just watched the entire video... I'm so stoned.
Thought on League of Legends? (Random question)
Cool game, has the potential to be the biggest thing Esports has ever seen. I think SC is a much higher skill based game, but LOL is free and the learning curve is lower so it will always have a much larger audience.
How about Dota 2?
I have played DOTA 2, but I dont play regularly
you are one bad ass dude and a cool ass nerd.
Thoughts on UFC 151 getting cancelled? In particular, how do you feel about Jon Jones now?
I don’t understand his feelings on not taking the fight. He had every advantage. Sonnen just lost, had no time to train, is a 185 lb guy, and talks a lot of shit about Jones. It is just the perfect opportunity to shut him up…..I don’t know if he knew that the entire card would be cancelled or not. Taking a fight on short notice is very hard to do, not for the fighter who had the full camp, but for the guy stepping up. Sonnen was never my favorite fighter, but this shows that he really backs up what he says. Well played by Sonnen……Jones confused me and I think he made a horrible decision
Fighting Sonnen could have potentially been a career destroying move. Sure he'd be the favorite to win, and most likely would have, but there are no guarantees in MMA and Sonnen is always a game fighter. That said, Sonnen has no business fighting Jones and isn't even in the LHW title picture. Jones accomplishes nothing by beating him; it's expected of him. It's a lose/lose situation.
I'm not a fan of either Jones or Jackson, but I think it is incredibly immature and unprofessional for Dana White to throw one of his top fighters (and his trainer) under the bus like that because his promotion dropped the ball on this card. People get hurt, fights get cancelled. You need contingency plans for situations like this. The UFC fucked up on this one and Dana is too immature to accept responsibility.
EDIT: Just to be clear, I'm in no way saying he made the right decision. Only that it was his decision to make, and I think it's unfair for people to react towards him the way they have. Frankly, it doesn't surprise me that he did make the choice he did. And, yeah, it absolutely affects my opinion of him (which was never too high to begin with). That being said, it's not his fault that the card was cancelled and he doesn't deserve the kind of vitriol he's getting. it's
If it was me that turned down the fight, I would be fired. Its part of the game. This happens on almost every card. Its a normal part of the MMA game. I think way too many are getting hurt, but Jones should have taken the fight.
Like I said in /r/MMA , there's something sincerely wrong when the young champ won't fight after a full camp, but Anderson Silva, a man who many think has very few fights left in his career, was ready to jump in and fight seemingly anyone on 8 days notice. I know it wouldn't have been for a title, but that's one more fight where he risks his own health and legacy as GOAT.
I weigh about 100 pounds, how many times do you think you could punch me before I would die?
hmmmm I would hope I could do it in 30
I've always wondered this. Has anyone ever picked a fight with you at a bar or somewhere else since you have started fighting? How would you react if they did?
It happens all the time. I'm not the biggest guy, but I do like the ladies. I bring my wife when I go out, but that does not mean I dont try to get girls for my friends or just in general like having nice things to look at. This pisses a lot of guys off. I usually talk my way out of fights and my wife is amazing at calming me down. But there have been a few big buff dudes that got KO'ed by me, but I walk away almost all the time
I'm surprised that your wife is ok with you "having nice things to look at" lol..
She is awesome
can you tell us about the time/times you didn't walk away?
Nothing to special. The one thing I don’t like is people touching me. A hand shake or a hug is fine, but I really don’t like anyone in my space. I pace a little, remind myself I’m the man and am going to win, think about my family and how much I love them, and go out and try to hurt the guy trying to take my dreams from me.
How do you feel about weight cutting in MMA in general? It seems crazy to me that two guys that weigh 170 cut down to 145 for one day, and then fight at 170. Why not just not cut weight at all?
I think its good. It adds strategy to the game. Now that I have my weight and preparation planned out on such a high level, I will always have an advantage at 145. I have be in weight related sports for a long time now. I guess it just the norm for me.
Sorry everyone, the words are starting to blur on the screen. Thanks everyone so much for joining my IAmA. We made the front page!!! You are awesome, I love you all and I will do more of these in the future. Please follow me on twitter @NikLentz It really does make a big difference in a fighters life. The more followers we have, the more sponsors we can get. Thanks again! I will answer the rest of the question tomorrow, so if you still have questions. Ask! Goodnight
If a non trained fighter were to get into an impromptu fight, what piece of advice would you give to them that could potentially increase their odds of either winning the fight, or escaping with potentially less injury.
Run, don’t fight if you don’t know how. You have no idea what kind of fighter your opponent is. Its very hard to know who is going to be able to hurt you. Get some lessons or watch some videos online. If you have to, go for the eyes!
the eyes are the groin of the head
...........is that so
Any general clues as to the kind of person you don't want to be up against?
At 145, I dont really care. If someone is taller than me, I will have the strength advantage. That was not the case at 155 and I had to fight lots of guys that were taller and weighed more. So at 145 I feel like there are no physical advantages that will not equal out
Fighter pay has been a big issue in the news recently. I know only part of a fighter's total pay is ever reported publicly.
I'm wondering how much, or at least what percentage of pay, a fighter typically (or you specifically) gets for your show pay, win bonus, discretionary UFC performance bonus, sponsorship pay, and any other miscellaneous income?
I kind of answered this question already, but in general most fighters do not make very much money. The top guys are making big bucks, but the lower guys are just getting by...
Ah Mr. Lentz, I was waiting and waiting so I could re-cross-post this, but I was too late this time!
How much pressure does the UFC give you to put on entertaining fights and take risks?
A lot of pressure, sometimes so much guys crack and have horrible fights
great win off of Mitsuoka
Touching off this, and this isn't taking away from your performance in any way, why do you think Japanese guys tend to have such poor results in the UFC? I heard that the flight puts their body out of whack but I wonder how much of that is true.
I think the UFC is just a different level. Fighting in any other organization is nothing like fighting in the UFC. I think some of it has to do with travel, but people travel from EU, South America and every where else. It really has to do with the skill level in the UFC. The skill level in the UFC can not be reproduced anywhere.
Who is the craziest person you've ever trained with?
Volkmann, dude is one of my best fighting friends, but he is an odd dude. He is also freaky strong……..He is probably the strongest human pound for pound. Never lifted a weight in his life, just killed pigs with his hands when he was a kid….lol
Never lifted a weight in his life, just killed pigs with his hands when he was a kid
In your face, /r/Fitness
do you think you're as good at MMA as MMA is at starcraft 2? :D
I'm way better ;)
What was the deciding factor in you moving down a weightclass? And how do you plan on separating yourself from other contenders in a pretty wide open division!?
Some of the guys are 155 are bigger than me in every way. Height, reach, weight, etc…….I just did not want to deal with that anymore. I felt like I could be a great 155 lb guy, but a champion at 145. I will separate myself by my skills and strength. I did well at 155, I’m now one weight class down, stronger, faster, and am training right.
What was your proudest moment, what was least proud moment?
My proudest moment is getting married to my wife. The least proud moment is fighting with my father at one point where we almost got to actually fighting.
How much of the story to disclosed fighter payouts tell? How does sponsorship money compare to UFC salary? Not trying to ask your exact financial breakdown but there is so much mystery about this.
Fighters don’t make very much money. You really do not make too much money until you get up to begging a main guy on the PPV’s. If you are one of the last 5 or 6 fights you are living well and if you are one of the last 2 you pay goes up by 5 to 10 times and main event probably 20-30 times…..if not more….Its feast or famine in the MMA world and most people are starving. I personally live a modest, but good life. Im far from rich, but I make more than the average person in the US. The mystery is because a lot of people do not want the world to know how little a lot of the guys make.
Which fighter influenced you the most to get into MMA?
Who are some of your favorite fighters to watch right now?
How do you handle crowd pressure and Octagon jitters?
Not really one person. I take moves from people. For example GSP has the best double in the game. So I have watched every GSP fight and just watched his doubles over and over. I do this for every fighter.
It was only hard for my first fight. I got really tired 30 seconds into the fight. After that it was back to the norm. I have over 40 fights, so I don’t get too nervous about the crowd or the octagon
How much did you weigh in the ring in your last fight? I'd like to see a fighters weight the day of a fight
I read a post on the UG that said you tapped out Brock Lesnar in training. Can you confirm this?
He was not going to hard, but I jumped on a guillotine and held on for the ride. He had to tap! It was awesome, but they he picked me up when we started again and threw me across the room.
Tell me about the most delicious sandwich you've ever had.
It started when I was at a party with my friends. They were visiting me at college and I brought them to a wrestling party. We had a blast and I called some random chick I knew, but we were never lose friends. She came and picked us up. She was super hot, my friends were happy and I was hungry as hell….. Also stupidly drunk. I thought grill cheese! No bread…….took the cheese and then saw some cinnamon toast. I took that, put the cheese on it and added peperoni. Cooked it in the microwave and ate it. Best sandwich I ever ate and the night ended well ;)
Hypothetically speaking, if your life was on the line if you loose. Would rather face Jose Aldo in the Octagon or on 1vs1 on Starcraft 2?
Aldo man, I would love to fight someone to the death….could you think of a better way to test yourself? Besides, even if I died (Which I would not ;) I would have some serious street cred in the after life!
Why is your nickname "The Carny"?
Hey Nik, my goal is to make it into the UFC and was just wondering, when did you have your first ammy MMA fight, how long did it take you to go pro, and then how long was it to get in the UFC. Did you ever worry that you wouldnt make it in because there wasnt enough time to get all the fights that you wanted?
I have been fighting for around 7 years. I never had an amateur fight. There is this horrible place that many fighters get stuck in. You have not beat a guy that’s good enough to get you recognized, yet no one that would be a great win on your record will fight you. It’s too dangerous for them to lose to you, and they gain nothing if they beat you. I was stuck in the situation for about a year and a half. I had no money, no one would fight me and the UFC didn’t want me. That was one of the hardest times of my life. On my 25th birthday I felt like the biggest loser in the world………Good luck and work hard! I wish you all the best! Keep me updated on twitter @NikLentz
Thanks for always giving us an Exciting! fights. We hear alot about TRT and guys who are just good at timing their cycles, but are their other things like blood doping or viagra going on behind the scenes?
I dont take any kind of supplements. I think an all natural diet is way better and will lead to a long, fulfilled life. I hate TRT, I think its the biggest load of crap in the world. Its just legal cheating. I would love more testing and would be patient zero for any type of random testing. TRT is cheating to me and steroids are in all sports, but because I dont take them, Im not part of that social circle. So I probably dont know to much about it. As far as the other methods...I dont really know.
As someone trying to come up, thanks for giving me that extra bit of confidence that TRT/Steroids is bullshit and it can be done naturally and done well.
Fuck the cheaters.
Edit: I don't mean "bullshit" to say that steroids and TRT are ineffective, because they sure as shit aren't, but that using them in a combat sport situation is pretty fuckin cowardly.
Sup bro, so what's your take on your new division? who do you think is at the top, and who do you want to fight next?
I don’t really care who I fight next. The only thing that I want is to be able to have a full camp for it. It is harder to take shorter notice fights now because I will be training in Florida at ATT. I think the Franky is going to take the division over and will be the Champ. He will be the guy I have to beat to get the title. The weight class is stacked. I think 155 is the hardest weight class in the world ATM, but I think 145 is moving up the rankings.
prolly been asked before but any advice for people trying to lose weight? any ufc sex stories? any advice with the ladies? any life advice in general?
you should go visit the dominican republic
The Dolce Diet will help you lose weight. I also post diet advice all the time on twitter and FB. I have no good UFC sex stories. The key to getting ladies is confidence and self respect. Dont case girls, make them pass a quality test as well. Are they funny? Smart? If they are not go find a different one. If you have respect in yourself, so will the ladies.
Hay Nik! I was wondering, what is Dana White like in person? I've always wanted to know what he's like away from the cameras :3
Also, I saw your featherweight debut live, great fight :D
He is just like he is on TV. Dana has been super cool with me. I think he is one of the coolest guys to work for. Although if you get on his bad side......I dont even want to know......
Wow i had no idea there were any sc2 players in pro mma. Pretty cool. Congrats on your last fight! Any idea when you are fighting next?
I do not know, but I want to fight in Dec
I'm really glad you ended up doing this! I'm @Donowaman Who brought it up earlier. So...I have a few questions!
Who are your favorite fighters to watch as a fan currently and all time?
How is ATT working out for you so far?
What country that you haven't fought in yet would you like to?
What other fighters are big gamers aside from Jens and Joe?
Who are your favorite fighters to watch as a fan currently and all time?
Anderson, he is just awesome
How is ATT working out for you so far?
ATT is the best gym in the world. Professional in every way. Amazing staff, coaches, training partners, and Dan the owner is about the coolest guy in the world!
What country that you haven't fought in yet would you like to?
What other fighters are big gamers aside from Jens and Joe?
I have no idea
JoLau says he spensd ~40K (maybe it was 20K) in training before a fight. What kind of money is there in MMA being spent on training/traveling/etc. Are you reimbursed by UFC for anything?
Also UFC bonus. What is handed out besides the 3 they announce?
Training camps are very expensive. My last training camp cost about as much as all the other ones combined. The UFC does not reimburse training camps. They give performance based bonuses. So if you fight hard you will get a little extra on the side. If you help promote and have a great main event, you could get a million dollar check. Most guys are getting very small bonuses, but every bit helps
How did you get into MMA ?
What build do you use in PvZ? I use Creator's FFE into 4 Gate Twilight + Robo, but I still struggle against Stephano style roaches (12-13 min max and they split their army between my nat and third).
Btw, I've followed you on twitter since your first interview in the sc2 world :)
I just tried an MMA fight. I won and continued to fight, one day I decided to give it a try and quit working, school and moved back in with my parents to pursue a fight career. It had lots of ups and downs, but I’m glad I did. Zerg is my worst match up, but if I go ultra aggressive I usually win. The problem is…I’m a macro player. I also suck at stargate builds….I try to scout a lot and keep the aggression up. Always pressure a zerg, most of them are whinny, weak minded people…they will break under pressure ;)
Can you give me some specifics on your weight cut diet? I train MMA 2/3 times a week. Definitely a rookie as I've only been at it a little over a year. I eat mostly a paleo diet and hear the diets for cutting weight are similar. I'm sure you know what the paleo diet consists of... but just in case, it's organic meats/fish. Organic fruits & veggies, eggs, nuts, water. Nothing processed or un-natural, no carbs or starches.
And... when you're not cutting weight what's your diet like? Just a free for all? Thanks.
I don’t like the Paleo diet. First, I think their ideas on what and how people ate are wrong. They did eat the stuff in the diet back then, but the proportions are wrong. I would buy Dolce’s books and go from there. If you get high enough in the game you could hire him! Good luck man, keep me updated on your career on twitter @NikLentz
Since Chess-Boxing is a thing, do you think you would dominate SC2-MMA, if it existed?
It would not even be fun to watch, I would be that good.
Thanks! lol, you better watch out Lesnar, I'm always ready!!
So, best area to concentrate on to improve my MMA ability? I wasn't a wrestler growing up and am 30 now so wrestling is hard on my knees. I've been training solidly for about 5 years now.
Also, how is it training up in Minnesota? My coach (Danny Ives) went up to train with Sherk for a fight last year and said you guys had a great gym.
Training in Minnesota is great! I would say work on your striking and escapes from the ground. That way you can hurt people on your feet and if they take you down, you will get back up fast. Work technique and drill wrestling still, but save the hard training for when you need it.
Who are some of your favorite fighters to watch, outside of your weight class?
Mighty Mouse or Benavidez? Who will be the first flyweight champ in your opinion?
I can’t lie, I don’t know too much about flyweights. I am actually kind of a horrible fight fan. I play video games in my off time and watch tapes of fighters for technique. I don’t follow the scene too much. I know a lot about 155, getting to know more about 145, and I know the big guys at all the weight classes besides flyweight. I have not done too much research or watched the fights in that class.
Do you feel that the UFC experience helps you with starcraft or the other way around?
I feel that starcraft has helped me handle stress a bit better IRL myself.
Also, you are awesome. My main hobbies are Muay Thai and Starcraft and I usally watch UFC on TV and starcraft on stream at the same time.
First, thank you! Starcraft helps me get away from the fighting world. It’s something I can do and get away from the stress of my work. Fighting is a very stressful job. Its 100% result based. That leads to lots of stress. Starcraft gets me away from that. I also cannot go out to the bars and drink, or party, or anything else when in training camps. So video games are the perfect thing to help that. I also use it for social reasons. Again, I can’t go out too much, so all my friends and stuff during camps are online. Sounds kinda weird, but it’s how I stay attached to the world while staying away from fighting.
What's worse in your opinion, getting knocked out, chocked out, or submitted?
They all suck....I'm the worst loser in the world..
Apparently I posted in the wrong thread but anyways is 145 the right division for you weight wise compared to 155?
Definitely, I was undersized at 155. It did not matter before because I could make up for it with strength and technique. Once I was fighting top guys in the UFC the size was hard to deal with. I am also in way better shape and changed my training, so I would do better at 155 as well.
Did you play sc2 like how you would workout? Would you say it's more of a natural talent? Career aside, do you consider yourself a gamer that happens to be a UFC fighter, or an UFC fighter that plays games?
I was a gamer first, so I would say a gamer that realized he was born an athlete
Hi Nik, despite normally rooting for the Asian fighters out of bias, I really liked how you over-powered Mitsuoka, and just showed how wrestling is such a strong base.
Have you ever played SC1? If you have, what are your thoughts on it? Do you think it's better than SC2, or SC2 certainly deserves more spotlight?
Would you possibly consider going down to bantamweight if things don't work out in featherweight? I'm just asking 'cause of the weight cut, because I read that Dominick Cruz cut from 160 or so, and cut from around the same weight as Aldo, but cuts 10 pounds more.
What are some advice you could give to a possible kid that might go into wrestling his senior year? I've practiced Carlos Machado BJJ here in Texas, and I've been looking to improve my grappling by joining wrestling and getting into a Judo class somewhere.
I say go ahead and try wrestling. Whats the worst thing that could happen? You dont like it? I have played SC1 and it is a better game than SC2. I was not good at SC1, but it is by far the more skilled game. 145 is my weight class.
What's one of the most important rules in fighting, and when fighters talk shit about each other to get an audience is it somewhat true, or do they all actually hate each other.
Its not true most the time, although it gets to this weird point close to the fight.....where you start to believe it and take it personal. I like and respect all fighters, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't break their arm in front of their mother and laugh as I did it when we are in the cage. After that I would go out with them and have a beer all the same
What are your destroyed pc's specs?
The best you could get a few years ago....I dont really feel like posting everything about it. I7 pro, SSD and 3 TB extra for media, Nvidia 480, custom built by me....etc...etc
How often do you speak with Dana White? Ever?
When I see him at my fights....small talk.... I have only had one real conversation with him.
Thanks for doing the AMA, I enjoy both MMA and SC2, it is cool hear from someone who enjoys both.
1) Favorite cuisine?
2) Do you feel that your discipline in training for a fights helps you when you get time to practice SC2?
Pho, Sushi, very spicy things, I really love Ghost pepper wings. I think so, it helps a lot. I understand how to get better at things. I play starcraft for fun though. I dont really play or practice like I do fighting
lol I Nik Lentz
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