Jose Torres on being ‘the most decorated amateur fighter in the world’


Ahead of his professional MMA debut on Titan FC 37, two time IMMAF World Bantamweight Champion Jose “Shorty” Torres discusses being ‘the most decorated amateur fighter in the world’. The following interview excerpts are exclusively from Torres’s upcoming appearance on War of the Words podcast; which will be available this Thursday. “They call me the most decorated amateur fighter in the world and I definitely appreciate it,” said Torres. “I’m the only two time world champion ever in the world, we had returning world champions for the second time and they just sadly couldn’t claim the title for the second time and I was the only one to do so. Mainly with the finish so I was very happy with that. “I have 25 straight wins, plus two world championships, two national championships and also a bachelor’s degree. So I was very happy to win nationals and graduate the same day, and few months later win worlds.” Torres will face Jorge Dominguez at Titan FC 37, which airs live and exclusive on UFC Fight Pass, March 4. “Shorty” was expected to make his pro debut on Titan FC 36, however the event was cancelled due to health concerns over Titan FC CEO Jeff Aronson. “I’m very happy that Titan FC gave me a four-fight contract, I’ll be doing my pro debut finally. Sadly the last event got cancelled – you know it happens, but for me I’ve been fighting for no money anyways, so when the fight got cancelled I was like okay, ‘back to the usual’.” Being the only two-time world champion, Torres spoke about the growth of amateur MMA and hoping that one day, similar to three time Superbowl winning team Denver Broncos, we could see more multiple time world champions in MMA. “I definitely hope so, when I first joined Combat-Do where I’m at now in Cicero, IL, he instilled in me, ‘hey you need 20 fights before you turn pro’ automatically. It doesn’t matter what you accomplish, you can be 0-20 or 20-0, you need 20 fights to get that experience, that’s what we set out to do. Luckily, I had a Division II wrestling scholarship so I couldn’t turn professional anyways, but I wanted my education first and that’s the biggest thing, just in case I get hurt or I’m just not that good at it, at least I have education to fall back on.” 23-year-old Torres also explained how the talent pool for the amateur MMA scene both nationally and globally is becoming a lot tougher, and that in itself should create for more competitive and compelling fights in amateur MMA and at IMMAF championship events. “Luckily out of my last two years, the IMMAF was created, they created the nationals and they also created the worlds. From the first two years, we only had 20 or so countries and then the next year we had 30 or so countries, this coming year we’re going to have 40+ countries and it’s going to get harder and harder with the talent. “I know at nationals it was just kind of, okay, here’s some local guys, good luck and become a national champion. It was okay but it wasn’t a big deal and then the second year, the numbers doubled, the same thing at IMMAF. So it’s a huge thing.” Torres also discussed how his IMMAF achieves lead him joining Bahrain based fight team KHK MMA who are pioneering the sport’s development in the region with a diverse team of athletes ranging from former UFC and IMMAF champions to local grass roots hopefuls. You can listen to the full interview with Jose “Shorty” Torres on War of the Words podcast, available on iTunes on Thursday.

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