I was recently blessed with the opportunity to interview John “Hurricane” Halverson on his upcoming fight with Roger Huerta at UFC 67 on Feb. 3rd. John took time out of his busy schedule to answer some questions for us and I am very grateful for that. Here it is, I hope you guys enjoy:
MMAlowdown: Thank you very much for taking time out from training to answer my questions. You no doubt have your hands full with training, your promotion: Midwest Cage Championship, and spending time with family. By the way congrats on the birth of your baby boy.
MMAlowdown: How do you balance everything that you have going on? You’ve really got a full plate in front of you.
John: Right now I am focusing strictly on my fight. My partner in MCC, Ryan Hass, has been handling day to day business along with my fiance, Sarah. Also, Sarah has been helping me with my diet and preparing my meals. All I really have to do at this point is show up and perform to the best of my ability.
MMAlowdown: Take us through a normal day of training leading up to a fight.
John: I am training twice a day which totals about 5-6 hours. In the morning I do my cardio and strength training, and at night I alternate between sparring (boxing/muay thai) and wrestling and jiu jitsu. Lately it’s been pretty brutal, so I’m ready to fight!
MMAlowdown: How did you get into mma?
John: About five years ago, I was boxing in a local show here in Des Moines. (Then UFC Champion) Tito Ortiz was in town for a seminar. After my bout he came up and congratulated me on the win and told me my hands were good and asked if I had ever tried MMA. I told him I loved the sport, but had no other experience other than boxing. He invited me to attend the seminar and he showed me some cool stuff. I met Josh Neer there and we started training together in a basement a week later. The rest is history!
MMAlowdown: Do you ever train with Tito or Josh Neer anymore? Who are your training partners and trainers?
John: Tito was the first one to talk MMA with me, and he was the first person that I really looked up to in the sport. I train with Josh whenever he is in town- normally on the weekends. My trainer is Anthony Porcelli. Anthony is a three time national wrestling champion as well as a certified MFS trainer. He has awesome work ethic and he always pushes me. My training partners are Victor Moreno, Jeremy Stephens, Ryan Hass, Jarrod Taylor, James Giboo….there are always good wrestlers and boxers that come into the gym, so I always have someone fresh to go with.
MMAlowdown: Would you be interested in ever boxing again?
John: I prefer MMA to boxing because you can use more of your tools, but sure, if an opportunity came up, I would consider boxing again.
MMAlowdown: What are your thoughts on the present state of boxing? What is wrong and what should be done differently?
John: Boxing, to me, just isn’t what it was a few years ago. Rarely are there any fights I really get excited about. Many of the boxers today don’t have the personality that MMA fighters do.
MMAlowdown: What are the keys to victory over Roger Huerta?
John: Roger is a lot like me- he loves to get in there and bang. I never go into a fight with a gameplan. It just doesn’t work for me. I train for anything and everything, so nothing comes as a surprise. If we stay up, cool. If we go to the ground, that’s fine too. Roger is a better wrestler than me, that’s no secret. But, I can sprawl pretty well, and if I end up on my back I am comfortable there. More than anything I am looking forward to a really exciting fight. I have known Roger for a few years, and he is a great fighter and person. I can only say that it is an honor to be able to get in there and mix it up with him.
MMAlowdown: Do you hold any belts in martial arts(jiu jitsu, judo, etc.)?
MMAlowdown: Explain how Midwest Cage Championship came about.
John: There were several great shows throughout the Midwest- Iowa Challenge, Victory Fighting Championship, Extreme Challenge, but none in Des Moines. A few promoters have come and gone. Ryan and I decided to bring a quality show to Des Moines so that Mid West fighters can showcase their skils in front of thousands of fans. We are getting great exposure and so are the fighters. It’s a good feeling to see people enjoy the sport as much as I do.
MMAlowdown: Where do you see yourself in 5 years and what are your plans for life after fighting?
John: I have two children and a great fiance’, so spending time with them and my friends means the world to me. I don’t ask for much! And, of course I would like MCC to continue to grow.
MMAlowdown: Anything you would like to say to your fans? Are there any people or sponsors you would like to thank?
John: I want to thank all of the great peope who have stood behind me for the past few years- you guys always make it worth it. Also, I want to thank my manager, Chad Bergmeier for the guidance he has given me. He is more than my manager, he is a great friend. I would like to thank my sponsors: Sprawl Fight Short Company, Xyience, Twisted Parrot, Crush, and Auto Outlet.
I want to thank John for taking the time to do this interview. I do appreciate it very much. I have a feeling we will be seeing a lot more of him and we will be seeing his hand raised in victory come Feb 3rd. Best of luck to you John and we are all looking forward to seeing your fight. I also want to thank Chad Bergmeier for making this possible, you went way out of your way for me and it is appreciated.
I hope you guys enjoyed. Keep checking back and I will have some more interviews up very soon, and as always, the most up to date mma news, rumors, and updates.