Top 10 heavyweight Chris Daukaus will finally train MMA full time after his fight on Saturday.
After 10 years working as a Philadelphia police officer, the No. 10 ranked heavyweight will take a leave of absence and follow his dream to be a UFC champion by training full time.
In an exclusive interview with Cageside Press, Daukaus explained.
“I did recently sign a new four-fight deal with the UFC, so, uh, a four-fight contract, and I’m really excited about that. This fight [with Shamil Abdurakhimov] will be the first fight on this contract, but you know, the day after my fight- the 25th, that will actually be 10 years that I’ll have with the police department. So, I’m going to walk away, take some time off and focus fully on fighting.” Daukaus said.
Unfortunately, a few days after the interview, Daukaus’ fight got moved to July 31. Nevertheless, he continued.
“Um, this camp pretty much has been testing out the waters, as far as that. In the beginning of camp, I was still working a little bit, and then I decided I would burn all of the time that I had. All of the sick and vacation time I had saved up, so I’m fully committed to this. So, after my fight, I’ll go into work, I’ll get everything sorted out with my pension plan and all that good stuff, and take a leave of absence.”
Daukaus explained that if things continue to go the way they are going: him being 3-0 in the UFC with two Performance of the Night bonuses, there is no need reason why he can’t train and fight full time.
While the Philadelphia native is very excited about this new journey, he is also scared at the same time.
“Oh yeah, oh yeah, this is probably the scariest part of my life in recent memory because I have that security; I have all of the benefits going for my family, my wife, and son. And I’m kind of not throwing it away, but I’m not using those anymore; I’m not guaranteeing those benefits for my family…Everyone has always depended on me for everything. You know, like, paying the bills and medical coverage and everything like that. Now that it’s going to be out of my hands, that’s a little scary as well, I like to be in control of things, so it’s going to take some getting used to,” Daukaus said.
Daukaus fights Shamil Abdurakhimov in the co-main event of UFC Vegas 33 this weekend and has a chance to take the Russian’s No. 7 ranking.
Watch the rest of the interview above where Daukaus talks about his fight with Abdurakhimov, his win over Alexey Oleinik, a potential match-up with Tom Aspinall, police backlash, and much more.