Coming off a few years competing in the amateur circuit with great results, lightweight up and comer Chris Stone turned pro in 2016 and has so far reeled off two straight wins.
Each time out, Stone was happy with the performance he put on – and more importantly – with the level of experience he was able to gain from each fight.
“I’d say the fight with Kody (Hammond) was definitely a real tough fight,” Stone told MMAWeekly.com “It was good, especially in my first fight, to go into the third round. It was real good experience and I was happy about that.
“The fight with Chris Dempsey was a big deal for my second fight being a main event fight. It was good to go out there, get the exposure and experience of it. That went just about as well as it could have.”
Having had a good amount of experience across multiple combat sports in the amateurs, Stone felt like there was nothing left to do at that level and knew this year would be his to turn pro.
“I had about 13 amateur fights kickboxing and MMA, and lots of Jiu-Jitsu experience, so I felt pretty comfortable by the time I started fighting professionally,” he said. “I was ready to make the jump. I had momentum and a good support group behind me, so I figured it was better now than never.”
Stone (2-0) will look to pick up his third win to start off his career when he takes on Jacob Ikaika Martin (3-1) in a main card lightweight bout at CageSport 43 on Saturday in Tacoma, Wash.
“It’s a tough match-up,” said Stone of facing Martin. “He has all his wins by submission, and I have all my wins by submission as well, so it’s a good fight between two grapplers.
“I have good striking as well, so we’ll see how I’ll test my striking out. If it goes to the ground, I’m comfortable with just about anybody that I fight. He looks tough, he looks physical, and has a decent amount of experience.”
Just starting out his career, Stone’s main goal for 2017 is to expand his fan base and continue his growth as a fighter.
“I just want to fight as many times as I can,” Stone said. “If I can stay healthy I want to be as active as possible.
“I want to get some exposure and get some travel in with some fights, and fight a little outside of Washington if possible. The main thing is I want to get some experience, get some fights under my belt and stay active.”