Ep. #71 – Dakota Bush

Dakota Bush is a mixed martial artist who competes in the Lightweight division of LFA. The Missouri native has finished four of his six victories en route to a 6-2 record as a professional.


Dakota Bush: So man uh, how have you been? How was uh? How has quarantine been it’s uh, the whole world’s kind of going crazy, so how’s it been like for you and the family throughout the entire pandemic, well being actually home of missouri. It hasn’t been that rough here. I didn’t miss any time at work and uh my wife. She didn’t miss any time, so we’ve been uh pretty pretty fortunate to keep working and but uh the only thing. That’S i guess that changed a little bit is the kids going to like daycare. That kind of changed for us so, but luckily we have family that can keep up and watch with them that, like school, got cancelled for a couple of them. So it’s been nice for us to be able to do that. I’M up in i’m up in canada! So everything here is like the second: they were, like: oh someone’s, got a case. They shut down everything and we’re still kind of all shut down. How was uh, how was training been throughout the entire thing? Training’S been the same, i mean one i mean like. Maybe a couple months – maybe it was a little slower, but mostly i’ve been i’ve, been able to keep rocking and been able to just keep everything rolling the same way. So we’ve been lucky yeah, so the the mma world’s kind of it was shut down there. For for a few months, which is part of the reason why i started this, it was just plainly out of like interest because i love mma, so just kind of started it for that reason. But there was one thing that was: you know circulating in the mma world, and that was this idea of fight island. As someone who’s been there and experienced it man, what was it like, and and did it live up to the hype? I don’t know how how they could pull that off. It’S it’s amazing and it’s like it’s like a it’s. I can’t explain it like when we got there. Of course we had to test for covet and then quarantine 24 hours and then once that 24 was up. We had to test again and then quarantine, another 24 hours and then after our 48 hours, we finally got to go out and about how they, how they pulled it off and how they can afford. It is just i, i can’t believe at the hotel. They stayed in, i mean the service was top notch three meals a day and it wasn’t just like lousy, hotel food. These were like five course meals. You know it was super nice. I uh. One of the posts i saw was that you were ready, you’re on fight island, you’re, ready to go um. Obviously, you didn’t get the chance to compete, but a lot of people you know who were there ended up speaking with dana white or ended up speaking with someone else. Did you uh? Did you end up having time to chat with someone uh in the ufc organization? I did not uh the main thing i got to do was i got to meet a couple other fighters, you know like tanner, boser, hung out with him a bunch and kicked it with him and uh another kid on the card that mozfar the russian who fought Mike grundy had a super good fight and uh, just all the other, like you know, like the legends like for doom and shogun and just cool being around them kind of guys, and it was awesome. I couldn’t ask for a better experience than what i had there. Yeah, i mean, obviously you were there cornering a friend of yours, uh, someone you’ve worked with uh. You spent a lot of time working with. Obviously the fight didn’t go his way. Um. Did it hurt a little bit? You know you go all the way there and and the fight didn’t uh didn’t go out. Does it almost feel like a loss for the entire team, even though it was him that was in there um it? It does stain yeah the law sucks, but that’s fight. That’S the fight game man and he really went around the world for me for 45 seconds, so it is what it is and i don’t i don’t get upset about it as long as he left everything in there and prepared for it. That’S all. I can ask you, know: yeah the fight uh, the fight wasn’t very, very long but uh as someone who was in the corner. What was it like experiencing the quiet arena? You know it must be weird here in the corners hearing the corner, men hearing the commentators. It must be very, very weird, you know, honestly, it didn’t really seem that different to me. I really didn’t pay much attention and notice the crowd not being there heard the music walking out and you know the announcer while you’re in there, and then i was just so focused on what was you know. Gon na take place, and i didn’t really didn’t really notice it. So i can say if i was fighting, it would probably been the same way if not even you know more focused on the situation. So personally, i didn’t notice the no fans and i don’t think i would have fighting either so i’d like to i’d like to kind of shift the focus here a little bit to to your career. I mean you’ve been kind of on the shelf. Now, for a little over a year, you competed may 24th and 2019, so it’s been over a year, my birthday, by the way, that’s how i remembered it so man, what’s it been like kind of being on the sidelines, like obviously i’m sure there’s time for you To develop your game, but it must feel a bit uh. You must be a bit anxious to get back in there. Yeah i’m getting the itch and i’ve had it for a good. While just this covered [ __, ], crap hit and i’ve had three fights lined up and always something happens, you know, and the first two were due to covet this last one i was supposed to fight was the 17th of july two weeks ago and uh. Unfortunately, the ufc we were supposed to file out monday and they end up speeding it up and making us fly out the thursday, which would have been the day of my way. And so i really had to do some thinking about it. And i thought that if there was a chance that i could fight for the ufc and i didn’t take it, i would have. I would have been super upset with myself. So i had to just you know, put that fight on the side for now and then go with that chance and unfortunately it didn’t happen. So now hindsight’s, you know 50, 50, so yeah so uh. You spent majority of your career with lfa um. What’S your thought of lfa as an organization, and someone has competed with them, it’s really trying to become like a stepping stone to get in the ufc. It seems like majority of the fighters that are getting called up are coming from lfa. Was that part of the decision why you went there as well? Yeah? That’S that’s a huge part, uh jake, actually before it was lfa when they were rfa. Still he won the world title with them and, like a week later, he got the call up and then another guy that used to train with us a bit andrew sanchez he’s also in the ufc he went through rfa and same you know same thing. You know it’s, so it was easy for me to see that you know this is the route to go and unfortunately uh it’s a little harder right now like with fights wise. So i i wouldn’t fight anywhere else. They take care of me. You know they really promote me and they help me with anything. I need and just a super great group of guys that you know run the show there and i’ve got to know them all really. Well, and i know my time is going to come. You know sooner or later so as long as i stay with them keep grinding, you know i look at it like you know: i’ve had five fights with them and i’ve only had eight pro fights and five of them have been there and if you look at My track record with them, i haven’t, fought any chumps. You know a lot of these pros that are, you know same record as me. You know like six six and two or you know seven and one eight. No around there most of their fights are, you know guys. 500 are losing records. You know everyone. I thoughts they’re, you know they’re tough fights. So i pride myself on that and i i couldn’t fight for anyone else. You know they’re such a great group of guys in promotion yeah. You mentioned your hard road. I mean you, you if you do look at your your uh, your fights they’re all very experienced guys and the two losses you do have are very, very experienced um. They both went by way of decision. It’S not like you’ve been finished or anything like that. But what lessons did you learn from? I guess the most recent loss uh that you’re going to apply to your next fights uh yeah, my last loss was to julia willis and he just had a super good game plan. Uh every fight we watched on him. He was standing and banging with guys. So that’s what we prepared for was just to stand up and you know throw hands, but he uh did his homework. I guess – and he took me down and could hold me down, so he wanted smart fight and beat me fair and square and hats off to him with that. But that also i’m glad it happened, because that that also showed me what i had to work on to get better and to win fights like that. So now i’m super focused on you know, staying on my feet and not getting to the ground and what i do getting to my feet in a hurry, so i’m not wasting half a round or most around trying to get up or fighting for a position. It’S it’s it’s funny, because when i talk to a lot of fighters, um a lot of them are very much like. Ah, you know just didn’t go my way. So it’s it’s really nice to see that you’re. You know it’s like yeah. You came in with a good game plan. How much do you think a victory in a loss really comes down to the game plan you have going in to the fight? It’S it’s just such a perfect storm for everything to happen, for a fight to you know, go your way sometimes because you know you could game plan for a guy like i did. I came playing for that whole fight and get hit with something completely different, and sometimes you got ta have a great game plan to beat someone and execute it, but also sometimes you got ta. You know make a plane on them on the fly and improvise and just fight. You know some people get so wrapped up and i’ve done it and my last fight was the same same way. I tried sticking the game playing so much. I didn’t you know, change and just fight. I i got the skill, i have the skill, you know it’s just sometimes you got ta, let the dog out and just scrap with someone yeah, i think uh. You know the best example when it comes to that. It really is jon jones, like his ability to you, know, he’ll go in and just he’s like all right. You’Re gon na win the first two rounds. I’M gon na feel you out and then i’m going to come back and win the last three. It’S it’s! It’S so weird to see i find a lot of fighters. Are you know if they lose the first round, they kind of get overwhelmed? It’S just interesting to see how, even though uh you know he’s had so many fights the pressure doesn’t get to him, and i think that comes along uh with time. I guess um and there’s i mean no shame in early losses in your career. You look at guys like jon jones uh, who had that early loss, george st pierre lost early in his career, and they still went on to rack off these uh, these long winning streaks. So what do you think it will take for you to really kind of? Do you think it’s one, two three wins away. How far away do you think you are from a call to a ufc or bellator, and is that the ultimate dream? Definitely i i definitely want to fight in the ufc. You know, that’s that’s the apex of the sport. That’S, like my coach, always says: do you want to play in the nfl or you want to play college football? So that’s where our sights are set. Is the ufc and that i don’t want anything else unless you know i’m too old, and i can’t make it you know, but i think i’m probably two fights away, i would assume um, maybe three or four it just depends. I’M not in such a rush. Right now, i’m just really trying to get better and focus on just getting in the fight and pushing the pace, for you know three to five rounds. If that’s what i get the opportunity fight for the title, but i think it’s going to come down to like a short notice call. You know i’m thinking. Hopefully it could come soon too. You know you never know with with what’s going on right now in the world with all this, if fighters even been training and if their gems are open depends on what state you’re in so i’m i’m in fight shape. Still, i’m ready to go right now, but if i could see it going a certain way, i think it would be probably two more fights you mean you see guys like max roshkopf. I think he’s a great example. I mean he was only 5-0 when he got the call, so i mean there’s really opportunities now, especially if you’re in fight shape. Obviously his didn’t go his way, but guys, like justin james, getting calls so i think, like as long as fighters are staying active now. There’S really opportunities that you might not get again um, you know like ufc’s and dire need. A lot of fighters aren’t willing to fight. They need guys to travel. Guys are testing positive for covid um as a fighter. What’S it kind of like what sort of things do you think of like accepting a fight like you know, especially with round kobet like? Are you worried, or at least like what sorts of pros and cons you balance before taking a fight? I think uh like if i was to get a short notice fight for the ufc. I don’t care who it is. That’S my foot in the door. You know i’m gon na fight anybody, i’m going to give it how i’m going to go in try to make a great game plan to win the fight, execute it and most of all, just let them know that they made a good choice on signing me and Show them that that i have the potential to stay there, not just get there. I want to stay there for a long time and the covid. As far as all that i ain’t too worried about that um, i don’t believe in it as much as what they’re you know putting out there. I think it’s all a little political scam but i’ll leave that all out of it’s a good argument for people. I don’t really want to deal with. I feel that man, i think it is. I agree with you. I mean i i i believe it’s the thing, but i think uh you know it’s. I think it’s a little bit blown out of proportion. Yes, um. I’M kind of in the same boat, um, but yeah same sort of thing. Let’S keep politics on the other side. I don’t want to be attacked. I i get you 100 man, the world’s uh, very divided right now it is man. I i 100 agree with. You. Um the little platform i do have uh with regards to mma, i kind of really i built it based on making predictions on fights as well as making matchups. If there’s a fighter in the ufc right now. I think that, like as a dream, would be a dream matchup for you – maybe not, maybe not now, but like somewhere down the line. Is there a fighter where you’re like man one day, i’d love to test my skills against someone like that yeah there’s, there’s two guys that one that i would just love to get in there and fight just because i think he’s the best 55 on the planet. Right now is charles oliveira. He is, i think, he’s going to be the world champ here in the next year or two and uh yeah. That would be definitely the fight i would love to have in the future, and someone that i’d really like to to beat up, and just because i don’t like is uh in the 55 division would probably have to be uh a guy. Let me think of his name. I can’t think of his name right now, but he’ll come to me but there’s i don’t have too much animosity. I just think some people are punks and you know fake in there and we’re really not like that here. We’Re just hard-working midwestern people and just trying to make a living and trying to do something cool with it like this. So when you uh, when you think about, i mean the guys that have really kind of emerged. The past few years, like guys, like colby covington mike perry, conor mcgregor a lot of their attention. I mean they and dylan dennis is another great example like they may not have the resume to really have the name that they have, with the exception of maybe a conor, but guys like dennis, for example, is it comes with negative uh attention? You know, but yeah they’re, building up these platforms with negativity as a as someone who’s kind of like up on the upswing, trying to make a name for yourself. How do you kind of stay away from that and be like look, i know, that’s the attention. It’S! It’S drawing attention, but that’s not who i am. How do you kind of stay like that and uh? You know kind of stay humble, even though it seems to be what’s selling right now i i just it’s just not me. I can’t. I can’t be like that. I mean some people can fake it. I can’t so it’s i got kids at home. You know, i don’t want my kids to look on tv and you know then they’re going to start acting like that. You know they’re going to start acting, however, their parents are acting, and i don’t want my kids running around acting like a colby or connor. You know, just especially where we’re from it just makes you look like an idiot all right, i’ll. Give you i’ll give you one last question here: um i love making predictions, i’m always wrong, always every time um, but man, we’ve got a big fight coming up, it’s the biggest trilogy, possibly the biggest trilogy of all time and and uh daniel cormier versus stephen ochich. What’S your prediction for that fight, i’ve been going back and forth. I’M like man, cpa, dc catches them! What’S your thoughts, i think if, if dc comes in with a good like cardio and good uh confidence after the last fight getting knocked out, you know and just stays in his face like he was striking. I think he could win. I don’t think he’ll finish him. I think he’ll win a five-round fight, but it’s same with steve stipe comes in and doesn’t respect him too much, because i think that was his downfall last fight, he kind of respected cormier from getting knocked out the fight before. If stipe goes in and really pressures him, i think stipe can finish him. I don’t see dc finishing him, but i can see stipe finishing cormier again and last question we’ll make it non-mma related and then i’ll. Let you go what sorts of things do you do it there in your free time, like throughout the pandemic, like what sorts of things were you doing any video games, any tv shows fishing. What what sort of things you do to occupy your mind? Oh, i turkey hunted the whole time. That’S that’s my that’s my thing man. I i’m addicted to it and if i could do that as a job, i would do that over fighting anything. I love turkey on all right man, all the best, looking forward to uh to your next fight. Hopefully you get matched up here soon rather than later yeah. That’S that’s the game plan and uh. If i do i’ll keep you guys posted and just thanks for letting me get on here, it’s good to get my name out there and it’s always a pleasure to talk to people that are, you know, like-minded and have a the same idea. So all right man, i appreciate it all the best stay safe, wash your hands, don’t catch anything if it exists, don’t catch it and all the best yep. You too brother, you

Sergio Pineiro

Sergio Pineiro is the Founder of FighterPath.com and host of the Quarantinecast podcast. Based in Canada he is both a sports journalist and MMA enthusiast. He practices the sport but has a passion for the individual stories of training, fighting and living the fighting lifestyle.

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