Training: Spent several weeks in Vegas training under Robert Drysdale at Drysdale's gym. Has spent the past month or so training in New Jersey with Kurt Pellegrino and his team. He has previously worked with Pellegrino for past fights but the longest stretch together had been two weeks. In this case, Torres has spent the past month with Pellegrino and, though Torres had never been much of a weightlifter, he has embraced working with weights for this camp and is doing lots of strength and conditioning. He also emphasized wrestling in this camp more than past camps.
When and why did you start training for fighting? I started martial arts when I was only seven years old. The training was great and I fell in love with the idea of combat and competition. When I turned nine, my parents could not afford the lessons anymore so I was put in soccer by my dad. At fourteen, I started to take kickboxing lessons from a local gym and paid for it with money I made doing landscaping work. Kickboxing gave me a good base for my stand-up but at school when I fought with my friends who wrestled, I never did well when the fight hit the floor. Finally at eighteen, my good friend introduced me to a man who taught Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. After that, everything fell into place with my fight career. Paying for college with my fight purses, I made sure that I fought at least four to five times a semester. I graduated and figured out that I made more money teaching and fighting so I decided to make it my life.
What ranks and titles do you have? Former WEC Bantamweight Champion. Black belt in BJJ under Carlson Gracie. Total Fight Challenge, Iron Heart Crown, Shooto Americas 132-pound, Extreme Shootfighting, and Superbrawl Champion. Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Do you have any heroes? Yes, my father, for always being there for me and teaching me the value of hard work and dedication.
What is you favorite technique? I love the art of knocking someone out. If MMA was not around, I would be a pro boxer. On the ground I like the arm triangle, I can set it up from so many different positions.
What does it mean for you to fight in the WEC? For me, it is the next step up in competition. WEC has some of the best bantamweight fighters in the world. I think that people will really see how dynamic MMA is with the fast paced fights and techniques used by the lighter weight fighters. For me, this means that I have to not train harder, but smarter and use great strategy.
Did you go to college and if so what degree did you earn? I went to Purdue University and earned a degree in Marketing.
What was your job before you started fighting? I worked in a hospital as a Radiologist’s assistant for five years. Perfect job for a fighter.
Most memorable professional fight (who, where, why)? My most memorable fight was with Chase Bebee; it was when I was given my opportunity to fight for the WEC title and show the world what I am about. No one gave me a chance and I got to prove a lot of people wrong.
What was your most challenging professional fight (against who, when, what was the outcome)? My most challenging fight was the first fight I had against Ryan Ackerman. He was a bit larger than me and I was coming off of an ACL surgery. I got to finish the fight, but I knew I had lost. After the first round I had no energy left in my legs and it was the best thing that could have happened to me. I lost a decision and it put me back on track to be where I am now. I rematched him a year later and won by an armbar in the first round.
Did you compete in any other sport(s) at college or professional level (what sport, where, how long)? My favorite sport other than MMA is soccer. I still try to sneak away and play when I can. It is pretty awesome cause the guys I am playing against argue if that is Miguel Torres or not on the field. They argue back and forth till the game is over and they come and ask. Then we take pictures and I sign some soccer jerseys.
Who were your training partners for this fight? Robert Drysdale, Kurt Pellegrino, and their teams.
Did you put more emphasis towards a fighting style or adjust your training to prepare for your opponent (what did you do differently/why)? I did not do anything different for this fight but work a bit more on my wrestling. I like to strike, fight in the clinch, and be on the ground so I always train to take the fight where ever it goes. I am dangerous like a shark in the water.
What, other than WINNING, are you using for motivation for the fight? The main thing that I use for motivation is simple. My daughter, and my community. My daughter is the best thing that has happened to my life and I want to provide the best future for her that I can. My business is a complicated one, but when she gets older I am sure she will understand and be thankful. The community that I come from is not known for being the nicest around town so I owe it to all the people and kids that work hard to be honest and good people. I want to show them that it doesn’t matter where you come from. If you dedicate yourself and try to do your best always, good things will happen. When I get up in the morning, these are the things that motivate me.
What is your favorite thing about this sport? My favorite thing about this sport is that it is simple and pure competition. In the cage it is man vs man. The better man will almost always win. It is simple and yet so complicated - kind of like understanding women.
How long do you see yourself staying in this sport? I see myself fighting for no more than 5 years. I have been in this sport for 11 years now and I want to do other things in the sport like training fighters and such. Anything can happen at any time so it is a rough estimate. The number could be higher or lower depending on a lot of unknown factors.