Whenever a successful athlete makes a transition to a new sport, there is always a question mark looming as to whether they can be successful in their new competitive space.

Evolve MMA’s Jake Butler leaves no question as to whether his transition from wrestling into mixed martial arts was the right choice. His first foray into the sport has played out almost as if it were a Hollywood blockbuster.

“It has been a perfect start to my career. My plan going into this year was to be as active as possible,” Butler explained in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “I came out of my last fight with no injuries, so when the opportunity to fight again came up, I took it.

Butler (top) rains punches (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

“I am focused on this fight ahead of me though and not looking to what could happen in the future. If I did come out of this one with no injuries or anything, though, I would definitely look to get another fight before the end of the year. I don’t want to get ahead of myself though. Every fight is tough.”

Although Butler only made his professional mixed martial arts debut earlier this year, he is no stranger to competing professionally. Boasting 20 years’ worth of experience as a wrestler, he knows all too well what it is like to grind his way to the top, and although he is very new to the world of fighting professionally, his experience as a serious competitor certainly helps him well before he even steps inside the cage.

“It definitely plays a big role in my mental game, especially,” he explained. “Having competed at a high level, it really helps me remain calm before a fight. It’s a little bit different in the lead-up to actually competing, though. I’d never really participated in the kind of build-up to the event like I have with ONE FC.”

In the lead-up to his September bout, Butler found himself in the spotlight through various media outlets that were telling his tale of leaving his lucrative career on Wall Street to pursue his passion for competing. The newfound attention wasn’t something that the accomplished wrestler was used to, but he certainly learned to embrace it.

“It was a little bit unexpected, especially coming from my wrestling background where I’d competed at a high level and didn’t really get that same kind of attention,” he admitted. “I’m flattered that people have taken to my story in the lead-up to my last fight, especially because it was only my third fight.”

Butler’s next bout is taking place in the city he calls home, Singapore. He faces Sylvain Potard in what will mark his fourth trip to the cage this year in a nine-month period. Competing again just four weeks after his last bout, Butler certainly has to enjoy the “home-field” advantage, which will make the preparation for the fight all the more easy for him.

Butler (top) controls his opponent (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)

“In Singapore, there is just a buzz around the city about this event,” Butler said. “It’s going to be great to be able to train in my home gym all the way up to the fight and sleep in my own bed and to have access to my own food. It just makes everything so much easier going into the fight, so I am really looking forward to it.”

All three of Butler’s professional victories have come by way of stoppage in the very first round, but the All-American isn’t looking past his next fight, where his opponent has had three times the cage experience he has had.

“I don’t want to predict anything going into the fight,” he said. “I am facing the most experienced fighter that I have ever fought, so it’s going to be a new challenge for me. I just want to go in there and put a lot of pressure on him early, and if the chance comes, I’ll take it to the ground and do what I need to do.”

The script for Butler’s success in his newfound sport is slowly beginning to write itself. It’s almost perfect the way that his career is beginning to unfold. With each new win, Butler is able to learn and adapt, and thus yearn to get inside that cage again.

His transition into mixed martial arts may still be in its early stages, but there is no arguing that his early success has shown just what his passion for competing can achieve. Every new victory to his name helps him become yet another highly credentialed wrestler who can find a new home in mixed martial arts, and his three-fight winning streak with highlight-reel finishes is something that not even Hollywood could dream up. Each time his hand is raised in the middle of the cage, it becomes evident that Butler is a new star on the rise.

Jake would like to thank Evolve MMA. Follow Butler on Twitter: @JakeFB

Top Photo: Jake Butler (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)