Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson was recently interviewed by MixedMartialArts.com and spoke about his philosophy on being a role model and a true martial artist. The UFC welterweight is on a five-fight win streak and looks to continue his success with integrity.
“When little kids and their parents see me on TV, I want parents to say, ‘I want my son to be like THAT guy’. I know what martial arts did for me, teaching me modesty, integrity, courtesy, self control. I want to show them that indomitable spirit. I’ll always be a martial artist first.”
Regarding the opposite style of a humble martial artist in Conor McGregor, Thompson had good things to say about the popular featherweight.
“I think it’s okay, to be honest with you. Conor McGregor is doing very well. He’s a great fighter and a very smart guy. I don’t think he was that way when he was first in the UFC. He kind of changed some things around and now he’s making more money than probably anyone else in the UFC, except maybe Ronda. He’s got the gift of gab, man. That’s just his ability. We all have different abilities besides just fighting. That’s just not me. I like to touch people’s hearts in a different way. To be honest with you I’m okay with it. I hope Connor does get that hundred million dollar contract, because that just shows that the UFC is doing bigger and better things and maybe some of that will filter down and we’ll all start making more money in the UFC.”
What are your thoughts on MMA fighters being role models for the public and youth? Would you rather see more fighters with a mentality like Thompson, or the opposite with characters such as McGregor?