For better or worse there has always been a unique fascination with the warrior mentality of the Native American. It’s the reason why sports teams throughout this country use their name and likeness as mascots. Rightly or wrongly, there is a widespread perception of the Native American bearing the image of a proud warrior.
For Coda Yazzie this representation is more than appropriately suited. The 25 year-old native of New Mexico has begun the long arduous journey of being a fighter.
Yazzie credits his Native American ancestry as reason for his early success in the cage. Being half Navajo, with the other half composed of Cheyenne Sioux and Arapahoe, Yazzie is full blooded Native American and fiercely proud of this fact.
“Oh yeah, for sure,” said Yazzie of the motivation to represent being Native American. “It’s that warrior mentality I guess.”
Currently sporting a record of 1-0 in his amateur mixed martial arts career, Yazzie’s passion for MMA sprung from his years spent wrestling in high school.
“Basically, a lot of wrestlers do good in the sport, and I said, ‘I could do that,’” explains Yazzie. “I wrestled in high school with Diego Sanchez, and I got motivated by him.”
With UFC contender Sanchez serving as inspiration, Yazzie quickly took to familiarizing himself with the numerous nuances that encompass modern day MMA. Four years and relocation to Fort Worth has enabled Yazzie to confidently go about setting a course for life as a professional fighter.
“Right now I’m training out of Texas Fighting Syndicate, Absolute Texas MMA, and every now and then I will go to Genesis for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu,” explains Yazzie. “My jiu-jitsu is pretty good; a lot of people think I just use wrestling. I use my wrestling to get the drop on them, but I do know about submissions. I’m comfortable off my back; I’m just not usually in that position very long, as the wrestling takes over.”
Yazzie will get another chance to channel the warrior mentality of his tribes as he returns to the cage this Saturday when he fights on the North Texas Ultimate Fighting card taking place at The Gym in Arlington.
Backed by the support of his fans and his sponsors which include Texas Mat Gear and Dime Bail Bonds, Yazzie is looking to come out the victor Saturday night. After all, his eyes are focused squarely on nabbing an amateur title before making the leap to the pro ranks.
“I would say another year. I would like to get an amateur title, and if that works out, then turn pro.”
If Yazzie can repeat the performance of his amateur debut, expect that plan to come to fruition sooner than later.
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