SEATTLE — A Muckleshoot tribal member and fighter will be part of the feature event at the live MMA fight at Muckleshoot Casino.
Shane WhiteEagle’s journey to become a mixed martial artist began with an invite from a friend.
“I was logging at the time, and I had a buddy sign up for a fight in Spokane and he asked me to corner him,” WhiteEagle said. “I kind of just decided to hop in too with him and see what it felt like.”
He won his fight and realized he liked the competitiveness of sport. His skills have grown from there with the help of coach Jeff Hougland at Combat Sport and Fitness.
A fight typically lasts from 15 to 25 minutes, so it’s important for the athletes to practice often and stay in shape.
“Sometimes you get a short notice fight,” WhiteEagle said. “Typically we try to stay in shape all the time, so we can be ready whenever we get the call.”
MMA is growing quickly in popularity, and the skill level of all ages is more impressive than ever.
“You see kids doing stuff that these professional athletes can do at the highest level,” WhiteEagle said. “They’re just growing up into it.”
WhiteEagle appreciates the support of his Muckleshoot tribe community and knows they have his back.
“Pressure builds diamonds," WhiteEagle said. "When it comes to representing the tribe and having the support, it’s one big community, a tribe.”
One of his biggest supporters is his mom, who cheers him on during his fights.
“You definitely don’t want to see your kid get hurt or anything, but you definitely want to see your kid excel at what they do,” WhiteEagle said.
WhiteEagle and the other fighters are ready for the exciting atmosphere at the Muckleshoot Events Center. An octagon of chain and metal is the only thing that separates the crowd from the action.
Excitefight is Sept. 16 at Muckleshoot Casino and will showcase many of the Northwest’s best MMA fighters. Doors open at 6 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 16, and the fights presented by Excitefight start at 7 p.m. Get more information and tickets on the Muckleshoot Casino website. Sponsored by Muckleshoot Casino.