Sean Pierson: not afraid of opponents, but afraid to disappoint family and friends and coaches

Andre Thurairatnam, Chantelle Henriques, Natalie Sequeria and Sean Pierson at Grants gym in the Octagon

by Chantelle Henriques

With UFC 129 just around the corner, Sean Pierson has many decisions to make from what strategy to use against his opponent, how to diet and how to lose 12 pounds in one day. But most importantly, he must choose his walkout song.

When it comes to his song of choice, Pierson looks for something that will get the crowd excited for the upcoming fight.

“I want something that pumps up me. Actually pumps up the crowd I don’t care about me. You want something that the crowd gets crazy on,” he said in an interview March 30 at Grant’s Gym in North York, where he is training for the big event.

Tickets for the UFC 129 match on April 30 in Toronto, sold out in just 8 minutes. He was scheduled to fight Brian Foster, until Foster was forced to pull out because of injury.

Despite his great success as a mixed martial artist, Pierson, 35, almost gave up fighting a few years ago while Ontario’s ban of UFC remained in place.

“We didn’t know when it was coming. For the last five  years we always thought ‘It’s coming next year, it’s coming next year’ and it never did,” he said.

With that dream finally answered, after Ontario’s ban was lifted in 2010, Pierson could not be happier that the fight is finally occurring in his backyard.

Pierson will have to face Jake Ellenberger  in front of 55,000 fans. Pierson will have the advantage of hometown support, but his fan base is national.

When Pierson was fighting in Montreal a decade ago under the stage name “PIMP Daddy” he had T-shirts created that said ‘Pimp’ on them, hoping to sell some. He was surprised when they sold out so quickly.

“I didn’t think I had a Montreal fan base. I always thought that I was the villain. Even though I was fighting the Montreal guy I had fans,” he said. “I was the hometown boy from outta town.”

Now all eyes on are this Pickering, Ontario native fighter who wants to do the best, not for just himself, but for his family as well.

“The biggest thing is thinking that you failed in front of your friends and family. Even though they don’t look at you like that, that’s how you feel sometimes,” he said, when asked what goes through his mind before a fight.

Pierson has always been an athletic individual, thanks to the support of his parents who encouraged him to follow whatever dream he had his eye on. Enrolled in a variety of sports at a young age, Pierson began wrestling in Grade 4. Now he still is grateful for the support his parents have shown over the years.

“They don’t necessarily love what I do now,” he chuckled. ” Both of my parents wish that I had taken the path of a lawyer or a doctor, but they appreciate the fact that I love what I’m doing and that I’m passionate about it.”

While his walk out song is still up in the air, Pierson is sure about his next appearance in the octagon:

“Pierson’s gonna win that fight.”