Source: UK Sportsvibe
Former WWE Superstar Dave Bautista will face veteran Vince Lucero (20-22, 11 KOs) in his MMA debut tonight at The Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, RI. Bautista was originally scheduled to face Rashid Evans (not to be confused with UFC fighter Rashad Evans), however Evans was arrested after violating his probation and was not going to be released from jail in time for the fight.
Lucero is a veteran of 42 professional fights, and has fought former UFC heavyweights Tim Sylvia, Justin Eilers, Homer Moore and Christian Wellisch. Bautista discussed the change of opponents in an interview with UK Sportsvibe.
"It has been a long wait for this first fight and with the change of opponent at such a late stage there are times you think will this ever happen," Batista said. "But as far as preparing myself, I haven't really stopped training for the last couple of years. Then when I found out I was going to be fighting professionally, we had an eight week training camp, but the camp was pretty much done by the time we lost the first opponent.
"There wasn't really anytime to change the training for the new guy and there was only limited footage of him in action, so we are going in there with the same game plan and play to my strengths."
Bautista will be following in the footsteps of many other professional wrestlers turned MMA fighters, including Bobby Lashley and Brock Lesnar.
"Both Brock and Bobby were very different fighters to myself," he stated. "I think they both based their MMA careers on their wrestling ability, I'm the opposite, I prefer the standing-up approach, that is where I feel my game is at.
"I have really gone out of my way to pursue traditional jiu-jitsu and I really consider myself a martial artist, so I haven't really implemented the amateur wrestling style."