Zay Garcia – “I’m taking what’s mine”

Preparations are well underway for the return of Fury Challenger Series, and will also see the return of Zay Garcia.


Many warriors in the fight game have their own individual wars they battle outside of the cage that many fans are unaware of. For Zay Garcia, a battle outside of the lion’s den has fueled his hunger to succeed in the cage once again.


I recently had the pleasure to speak with Zay in regards to his return to the Fury cage, and get some insight into the build-up to his return to action.


Zay Garcia (1-3-0) is an American professional Mixed Martial Artist currently competing in the Bantamweight division, representing Jackson Wink MMA. Zay has competed for C3 Fights and makes his 4th appearance for Fury Fighting Championship on May 21st


I’d like to kick things off by thanking you for taking the time to speak with me today, Zay, and also to congratulate you on your upcoming inclusion to the Fury Challenger Series 4 card mate.


“I appreciate that man, thanks.”




I trust preparations have been going well in the build-up to your scheduled return to the cage?


“Yeah man, I got asked about competing on the card in February. It was kind of see what’s good type situation, it was more or less my choice, I had just come off of my loss. I was supposed to have a fight in March but it was too soon after coming off of that loss,  and my mind wasn’t even on getting ready for anything. At the time I was still trying to get my son and his mother’s headstone paid for, but as soon as I got that paid for I felt I could put more of my attention into this the way that I needed to, try to bounce back you know.”



A very professional way to look at things, jumping from fight to fight can be tough, especially with your mind being else. It’s always best to take a step back and return once you’re back on track.


“If I’m honest, my last 3 fights my mind wasn’t in it, it’s just personal factors man. It’s coming back after a real loss, I just had to figure it all out, I find myself back in this game after losing my kid and his mum. It came a little fast to really get myself mentally prepared, I’m guessing I needed diligence to kind of realise I needed to click my brain back in, I gotta bring myself back to life after this. Because I’m not fighting as my full self, I’m fighting as a shell and I can’t do that. I can’t numb myself, I can’t just stay here no more, I gotta find a way to get myself up, to do something. Otherwise I’m just gonna be lost and I can’t do that, I can’t roll over and die yet, I’ll get bitched at if I show up too early hahahaha. I’ve been putting a lot of my undivided attention into this, trying to see what holes I have in my game, trying to talk to whoever, taking any advice I can get and drilling the hell out of it. I’ve been focused on this match, and I’m not gonna come into it the same person I have been in the previous fights. I feel like I’m a different person, I feel a lot more confident in what I’m gonna bring and I feel more ready.”


I look forward to witnessing all the improvements you’ve made. Unfortunately for us in the UK, we have to stock up on Energy drinks to catch you out there live on UFC Fight Pass, but I’ll be sure to stock up.


“Fuck yeah man I appreciate it. I didn’t even think about the time difference, what time is it over there at the moment?”


It’s almost 7 pm here at the moment.


“Oh man, wow hahaha. Pretty much the end of the day for you man lol, mines barely starting.’


Hahaha, yeah. When it all kicks off we ain’t shouting “let’s go”, it’s more of a whisper. As it starts in the early hours.


“Oh shit yeah, that makes sense, goddam hahahahaha.’


It’s crazy being a fan over here, hahaha.


You are once again set to take the walk to the Fury enclosure, this being your 4th inclusion to date. No doubt you are excited to once again represent the organisation?


“Yeah man. I’m going into this not just representing the team, not just my family but myself also. I’m looking forward to putting on a better performance, I’m looking forward to bringing more of myself onto this, to really show why the fuck I’m here you know. I’ve lost everything and I mean everything, but ready to take this back and take my fucking life back and get back out there a different person with a different outlook. It’s still beyond me that I’m back in this but I’m back, people get dealt shitty hands in life. I got dealt a shitty hand, I’m not a pussy so I’m.gonna play anyway.”


That’s a truly admirable thing to say man, I take my hat off to you.


“I certainly appreciate that man.”


No worries at all man.


Previous outings have not gone your way but determination in the fight game is something that many warriors of the cage hold in your arsenal.


How have you approached this bout differently to your previous outings to get back in the win column?


“I took some time to look at my previous fights, and I’ve seen my mistakes. It isn’t necessary training, with me it’s been more of a mental thing rather than th3 physical part. I’m having to accept things for what they are, I can’t let what happened affect me you know. It’s been a year already, I know what the hell I’m truly capable of. It’s not about titles or the prize for me anymore, you can walk away from something but it’ll it’s meant for you, life will pull you back to it regardless. I’m just accepting the fate I’ve been given, and I’m gonna do my best to capitalise as much as I can. So I’m able to look back at myself and say I did it, that hopefully I can make my family proud. To become a better man, someone my son and his mum would be proud of. I gotta get myself out of these trenches, and the only way to do that is to climb the fuck back up you know.”


My sincerest condolences. If I’m not out of place by saying this, I truly believe your family are looking down, and are extremely proud of you.


“I’d like to think so man, I really do. It’s crazy to be back in this world, when I was younger getting into this I gave up a lot for it. I dropped out of high-school, I turned down so many jobs, I was all about this. Then you meet somebody and decide to make other choices, trying to build up to compete while trying to take care of 2 others was not easy man, It’s just very different coming back into this. And don’t get me wrong, I’m very fucking greatful, this is who the fuck I am but it’s bittersweet if that makes sense man.”


Absolutely, I can totally understand that.


“Like I said, with these last fights man I know I haven’t performed at my best, I haven’t been grinding out in the way that needed to. It’s a matter of getting priorities straight, pretty much getting my head out of my ass and pretty much putting back into this shit. I’m not gonna be here feeling sorry for my fucking self, I wanna get myself out of this fucking shit. I gotta do this shit right man, I can’t fuck this up. My foots already in the fucking door, I’m so close to doing what people have worked there ass off for so I gotta make it worth something.”


You’re definitely in possession of a warriors mentally I must admit.


“Yeah, thanks man.


You’re very welcome mate.


Your 5th step on your professional journey will see you take on Tony Toro. A newcomer to the professional scene, who will look to impress once again in the Fury cage after his debut victory back at Fury Challenger Series 1 over Jose Lemus.


What do you make of Tony as you prepare for the evening’s violent festivities?



“Tony’s a tough opponent, I saw his last fight, man. He’s a very good technical striker, he knows where to hit you know but he’s like everyone else, everyone has holes in their game. Like i said, I’m gonna give him a run for his money, I’m sure he’s expecting to get a quick win and a good display. But I’m not gonna be that motherfucker that people can just walk over, and I’m certainly ready to show that on the 21st.”


It definitely makes for an interesting fight.


“Yeah, definitely.”


An action packed card is taking form for May 21st, with bouts being added day by day. Other than your inclusion on the night, are there any confirmed fighter’s or bouts in particular that you’re looking forward to witnessing?


“Man I’ll be honest, I really don’t know who else is fighting on the card, they haven’t really that much yet. As far as I know, I’m the only one from my team that’s gonna be fighting on this card. I dunno if they’re gonna get anybody else but, I’m.gonna do what I do man. I’m definitely gonna show up, and play from there.”


It would be great for some of your teammates to get on the card, always a great feeling to go to war with your peers.


“Yeah certainly man. It’s a good feeling when you have more than 1 person there,  you’re not alone, you got support. I’ll be going against his hometown people, which I don’t mind, it’s just part of the game man. I don’t mind being the away team, it kinda gives me the 1 against the world mentality anyway.”


It always makes the victory that little bit sweeter on your opponents home turf really right.


“Oh yeah, certainly. Everybody’s expecting you to lose and everybody’s wanting their guy to win, so when you do get the victory you’re like, Fuck yeah.”


I remember being at an event with the away guy taking the victory, he jumped on the cage imitating DX, telling everyone to suck it, hahaha.


“That’s fucking funny, hahahaha. It’s how you feel after you win man, I guess you’re free to expose it, hahahahaha.”


It definitely was fun to see, hahaha.


It’s been an absolute pleasure speaking with you today Zay, I wish you all the best for your preparations and I look forward to witnessing you out there once again man.


“I appreciate it man, I really appreciate it, it means a lot.”


Anytime brother.


Last but not least, do you have a message for the fans that will be in attendance and anybody you’d like to give a shout-out to?


“To the fans, get ready to watch a battle man. I’m either gonna go in swinging blazes or I’m gonna go out swinging blazes. As for shout-outs, I wanna shout-out to my family, so soon after mothers day I wanna give a shout-out to my mum, my son’s mum, I’m gonna do this right man. I’m gonna come out of this right, I’m gonna come out of this better, I’m not gonna fuck this up. There’s nothing to lose dude, I already done lost everything. Now all that’s left is to gain and that’s what I’m gonna fucking do, I’m taking what’s mine.”


Catch Zay, and many more phenomenal warriors take centre stage on May 21st for the incredibly stacked Fury Challenger Series 4 card.


If you like myself are unable to catch the action live, the event will be streamed live on UFC Fight Pass.

Join Our WhatsApp Group

Join our UFC WhatsApp fan group and discuss the latest UFC events and news