It has been quite some time since Matt Betzold graced the World Fighting Federation cage. The last time he stepped both in and out of that cage he entered and left as the WFFMMA flyweight champion. Since that April evening almost two years ago Betzold has undergone a transformation in his career. A transformation which has seen him relocate his family and his training to California in search of elevating his already impressive abilities in the sport of mixed martial arts.

The man has done exactly that going 2-0 since leaving Arizona. He now looks to return to the WFF and unify a title he never lost with new-found champion Brandon Moreno on February 7th. It is a boutt between two of the more skilled flyweights to ever compete under the banner of WFFMMA.

The MMA Corner was able to catch up with the man they call The Leg Breaker to pick his brain on the upcoming title bout. Betzold was happy to share his perspective on the changes he has made in his life, his opponent, and returning to compete at home once again.

Regarding his homecoming Matt had this to say, “It feels great to be able to come back to the WFF and defend my title! I’m excited to perform in front of my hometown once again! I’m excited to showcase my skills in the best show in AZ and one of the best run in the country. I can’t wait!”

AZ fight fans who have followed Betzold’s career can expect the same confident and aggressive fighter but they can also expect a different athlete than they last saw. He has and is still undergoing a transformation in his career.

He explained how the roots of change began to take hold saying “Moving to California wasn’t very easy. It was a huge change and took a lot of adjusting and time to get used to the change of pace and environment. Then again change never is easy. However it was necessary for me for do something different to get to that next level. I now get to train with the best lightweight fighters in the business and it has done nothing but improve me all around as both a person and a fighter. It honestly has been a dream come true!”

His accomplishments are a result of an unwavering belief in himself and his place in this sport. His highly decorated grappling and MMA career would not have come easy for anyone under any circumstances. He has made it look easy. Now Betzold has been training in a lair of lions out on the west coast.

According to him it has given him a tremendous amount of confidence. Betzold explained, “I’m currently training at Ultimate Fitness with Team Alpha Male beside fighters like Urijah Faber, UFC bantamweight champ TJ Dillashaw, Chad Mendes, Danny Castillo, and Joseph Benavidez. I also train around up and comers like Eric Sanchez, Matt Wagy, and Tyler Diamond. The list goes on and on.”

Betzold added, “Basically the gym is full of studs and has elevated my game like you wouldn’t believe. It’s awesome to have coaches like Martin Kampmann to mentor us all. I Love going to the gym and training now more than ever before.”

His last loss was to dear friend and the greatly missed late Freddie Lux in 2011. Since that time Betzold has gone on a four fight win streak that has seen him spend less than ten minutes total in the cage with three first round finishes. He works fearlessly, fast, and he is always searching for the finish which make him a lethal combination. He now brings his ferocious approach and his experience working with world-class fighters against another dangerous opponent in Brandon Moreno.

Betzold didn’t have much to say about his opponent but he wanted to make one thing very clear regarding the status of the WFF flyweight title which he never lost.

Matt simply said, “I don’t know anything about the dude other than I’m going to beat the hell out of him. I know he claims to be the flyweight champ of the WFF but we know that isn’t really true. Or at least we will know soon enough!”

That bravado has an underlying motivation. After many years of playing it safe and relying on opponents to step up. Matt has made a change which includes him standing as tall as he possibly can and flat-out calling folks out while pulling not even a fraction of a punch.

For a fighter who struggles to find challenges or even challengers, his approach is a result of demanding competition in any way he sees fit. He found a willing opponent with Brandon Moreno and Betzold is going to do everything he can to make sure everyone knows where he stands.

What can fight fans expect from Betzold on fight night? He explained, “To the fans that don’t know about me or have never seen me compete in the WFF they can expect the same Matt just a little wiser and a hell of a lot more vicious in my attacks. I feel more powerful all around but at the end of the day I’m the same old killer. I’m going to bring it from start to finish. That I promise.”

Like all fighters Betzold fights for pride, for respect, to prove something to himself. For all fighters there is another motivation that they carry. For each athlete it is different, but they all carry something inside that pushes them to do the not so glamorous work required to be even slightly successful in this sport.

Betzold talked about what motivates him to hit the mats every day saying, “What drives me is my family, my wife and kids mainly. I get up every morning to train with them on my mind. I want them to know I did everything I could to be best me I could be. I want them to look at their daddy and say ‘Daddy followed his dreams, grabbed the world by the balls, and killed it!’ I want them to know that anything is possible through hard work and dedication regardless of what others say or think about it. That no man or army can get in his way and if he can do it so can I.”

He added, “I fight because I love it and know that this what I was built for. I keep going hard to inspire others like me to never give up. I do it to shut the doubters up and prove my supporters right. Those are just some examples of the force that drives me.”

In closing he talked about where he sees the path before him, where he feels he is headed. Betzold said, “I have set a goal to make it as far as I can in this grueling lifestyle of MMA.  If that is to have the UFC flyweight title around my waist or the Legacy FC’s for that matter, so be it. I have a lot standing in my way and a lot to show the world. I’m just happy that I have some great opportunities coming up in the near future to showcase my skills. The walls that are put up to hold me back are meant to be knocked down! I truly believe I’m the best in the world or one of the best and it’s almost time for the world to realize what I have known all along.”

For anyone who has seen this young man compete overcoming every obstacle placed before him there is now doubt that he will not stop until those goals have been achieved. For those who haven’t seen this man compete google it, you won’t be disappointed.

For a glimpse into Matt Betzold the mixed martial artist look no further than his upcoming title bout for WFFMMA at the Wild Horse Pass and Casino. Results aside, to see him compete is a motivational experience that will have you on your feet from bell to bell.

Do not miss an opportunity to witness one of the more inspirational stories of our sport unfold in real-time as this man ascends to whatever heights he aspires to.


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About The Author

Todd Jackson
Staff Writer

Todd Jackson is a lifelong combat arts fan. MMA in particular has become a passion over the years. As an analyst his write ups have been featured by such websites as ESPN, FOX Sports, and Sports Illustrated over the years. Todd has interviewed world champions and hall of fame fighters. Yet his true inspiration comes in studying the fighter of tomorrow, the rising regional athlete. Todd is also a cageside commentator for an Arizona based promotion which allows him very unique insight into the sport he loves.