Bellator heavyweight Tyrell Fortune (9-1), who returns to action this weekend at Bellator 255, is an adrenaline junkie. And that is not confined to merely the realm of MMA. Despite his heavyweight frame, Fortune has also fulfilled his need for extreme thrills through snowboarding — something he got into at an early age.
“Around 9, 10 years old my mom took me snowboarding,” he told Cageside Press recently, “and I’ve always been like an adrenaline junkie.” Growing up, Fortune recalled, he was always the kid “that was too big.” As such, he never wanted to be left out, or hear words along the lines of “you’re probably too big to do it.”
Determined to overcome his own size early on, “I always would push myself to do things that they would say ‘oh you’re too big to do that.'” And so to this day, snowboarding is an escape for Fortune. “Like for me its a get away, like if I think of a vacation, I want to go to Switzerland with my snowboard and snowboard for two months. That’s my getaway, just the release you feel.”
Still, it’s MMA where Fortune makes his bread and butter. The heavyweight division. Where a couple of big names recently found themselves released by the UFC. Those, of course, would be Junior Dos Santos and Alistair Overeem.
Would Fortune be game to fight either? “100%, I was honestly considering bringing them up after I won the fight [at Bellator 255] and got an interview,” he told us.
“I think one of them, if not both, will be signed. I think it kind of depends on their career and what they are looking at and want they want to do,” predicted Fortune. “I would definitely be excited and would love to welcome them both, if not one of them to Bellator, because they’re legends of the sport. They have the name, you know. If you want a name you gotta fight somebody with a name.”
As to who Fortune would choose if he had the choice, it’s Dos Santos. “Just because I feel like his boxing and striking is still up there at a high level. And just who he’s fought, his resume is just better than Alistair Overeem. So I think his name carries a bit more weight than Alistair’s does.”
This Friday, April 2 at Bellator 255, Fortune faces off with Jack May. When we spoke, however, the opponent was still Matt Mitrione. Regardless, Tyrell Fortune has added plenty to his training camp ahead of his first fight of 2021.
“I added so much more. I’ve been running 10 miles a week plus,” Fortune explained, “so if not 10 I’m putting up 15 miles a week on an eight week camp. And I don’t think any heavyweight in the world is running that much on top of training twice a day.”
It all came down to “just adding more things to my camp, and pushing my body more, pushing my mind to where I’m physically and mentally ready for anything.” That has come hand-in-hand with Fortune investing in himself. Which began back before his last fight, with Said Sowma. From finding a chiropractor to working with Neuro Force 1 for training and nutrition, to mixing in meditation and yoga — there’s been a lot of additions. “I would say now I am finally reaping more of that investment that I have put into myself.”
Tyrell Fortune returns this Friday, April 2 at Bellator 255, live on Showtime.