There is a saying in life when opportunity knocks at your door, you have to open that door and that is what Titan FC lightweight Kurt Kinser is doing.
The fighter out of Bloomington, Indiana made his professional mixed martial arts debut in 2007 and has won seven of his eight fights by knockout or submission.
Kinser (8-0) is coming off an armbar submission win in November against Tom Shoaff and it only took him 51 seconds to get the victory. It was his sixth career win in the first round and his last two wins have come by submission in under two minutes.
The fight against Shoff was his first fight in 18 months as his previous fight came in April of 2012. Why did he have such a long layoff? Was it due to injuries, being unable to find an opponent, or both?
“It was a combination of things,” Kinser told The MMA Report. “Just the normal injuries that get everybody on both sides. People I was planning of fighting — a couple of times myself I ran into some injuries. I had get taken care of and fights following through in general. Also, starting my other job too. I am a conservation officer here in Indiana and there is a long training period where I have to go through boot camp and everything for that. A combination of all that stuff together really made it hard to get in there for a large period of time.”
The opportunity he had been looking for in this sport came in a call from Titan FC and was offered the chance to face MMA veteran Pat Healy for the vacant lightweight title at Titan FC 33 on March 20 at Mobile Aerofest. His initial thought about the fight was excitement but was also surprised he was being offered a title fight.
“I am still from the school of thought that I do it because I love it,” he explained. “Whatever I can get, I am real happy. Being able to get a quality opponent like that, for a good opportunity like the vacant title at Titan. Really excited. Definitely looking forward to it. I am always happy when I can get stuff lined up. Looking forward to a good challenge. Looking forward to a good fight and definitely gives me a lot of motivation to push that extra mile when I am training in the room.”
“I’ll be honest, it was surprising. I was not expecting it. I felt like this sort of came out of the blue. I was real happy that they did look at me for it. I long ago decided that there is no way I can really predict what happening next. I have had some good opportunities pop out of nowhere like that before and a lot of stuff we worked hard to line up, it just fell through. I think it’s the nature of the sport. Hard to predict sometimes with simple things like career path, time, and opportunities.”
In terms of fighting styles, has Kinser faced someone with the type of skill set that Healy will bring to the cage? For Kinser, he knows the type of fighter his opponent is and believes this will be a good fight for the fans.
“Everybody is different and even if someone has the same general style, it’s a little bit different. I will be honest. His overall stuff. There has been people with similarities and stuff. As far as what he brings, he is also a forward, pressure fighter which I definitely think its going to be a good fight. He is very unique with the things I have seen.”
A win over Healy would be a huge statement for Kinser and it could be the victory that gets him a phone call from either Joe Silva or Sean Shelby.