Success in any sports field derives off one’s belief and dedication toward reaching a goal. From a reluctant practitioner to an ambitious competitor, Tony Sims’ confidence has without question transformed him into the prized athlete he is today. Honoring his brother’s legacy through MMA fighting, his skyrocketing ascent has put fans and critics on alert to the potential birth of a future star.

The determining factors for any fighter’s calling to becoming a champion stems from their mindset and approach. Highly competitive since his days as a boxer, Sims has found competition in MMA as a suitable outlet for him to express his full talents in this region of combat sports. The athletic expression Sims displays through fighting is centered on one goal in his pursuit toward greatness to becoming a UFC champion, something which holds great value in this journey he has taken.

“I have always needed competition in my life,” he told The MMA Corner in an exclusive interview. “Fighting certainly satisfies that for me. My coach Leister [Bowling] asked me a while back, ‘Why are you doing this?’ I told him [it was] because I wanted to be in the UFC. He didn’t particularly like that answer and suggested that my goal should be to be the world champion. That is the only goal I have, to give it everything I have to be the UFC champion.”

Sims (L) rocks his opponent (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Undefeated as an amateur and 8-1 as a professional, Sims wasn’t handed all these achievements overnight. It takes a dedicated individual to obtain such accolades. With the support of his coaches and teammates at Elevation Fight Team/Easton Training Center, Sims has the physical preparation for taking on any opposition standing across the cage.

Aside from his physical prowess, Sims visualization and positive reinforcement also gives his a mental edge going into each encounter. These elements he carries with him have been the key ingredients to his successful winning streak, which includes his groundbreaking moment in capturing the coveted Prize Fighting Championship lightweight title.

“The mental aspect in fighting is vastly underrated. We prepare our physical skills so much, but a lot of guys forget to prepare themselves mentally, but it is essential,” Sims explained. “I had a long layoff from fighting at one point, and in that time I paid a lot of attention to overcoming the mental hurdles we have as fighters. In short, when I fought Chase Hackett for the PFC lightweight title, I never had felt more confident and calm going into a fight.

“Each fight since, I have focused on visualizing my fights. I make sure to see the fight going well, me facing adversity, but inevitably I only visualize winning at the end of it all. It is a major tool that our coaches stress for us to utilize.”

Tony Sims (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Step by step, inch by inch, Sims has been making his mark in the fight circuit in Colorado. With impressive victories concluding in decisive fashion over rising prospects and longtime fight veterans, Sims has showcased his dominance, which is the result of hard work and the confidence he puts into his craft. Hoping to continue this winning routine, Sims enters PFC 4: Thrillers against another formidable contender in Drew Dober. Equally matched with the current champion, Dober is a definite threat to snatching away the PFC lightweight title. The threat Dober poses creates a dynamic incentive to motivate Sims in the upcoming challenge.

“My opponent is one of the best fighters outside of the UFC in the United States,” he said. “He is experienced, well-rounded and dangerous. I am very focused on this fight. I am just excited to test myself against a talent like him and leave it all out there. It is going to be an exciting fight!”

Using this fight as a measuring stick, the mission is clear going into his battle against Dober on Oct. 18. Sims looks to come out on top in this high-stakes title war. Although the future is not certain, Sims has all of the tools to give him great potential in making his dreams become reality. Nevertheless, one thing will stay the same. Whether fighting locally or in the UFC, Sims can always be counted on by spectators to be a fast, well-rounded, exciting and fun fighter to watch. Those are the elements that mix to paint a vivid portrait of the competitive figure he is and continues to be.

Top Photo: Tony Sims (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

About The Author

Monta Wiley
Staff Writer

Monta Wiley is an aspiring sports journalist that has covered the world of MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. He has been a regular contributor to US Combat Sports. Monta has a Bachelor's degree in Aviation Administration from California State University-Los Angeles. Outside of his writing, you can find Monta at the gym honing his BJJ technique.