by Sandy Hackenmueller
What might be a nightmare for one person, just might be a dream come true for another.
Such was the case Saturday night when MMA fighter Frank “Nightmare” Schuman added his fourth professional win to his undefeated record.
On April 18th, Schuman headlined the King of the Cage MMA event held at Lake of the Torches Casino Resort. His opponent was the heavy-handed Bill “The Shark” Finn, and Schuman knew he needed to be ready for him.
Heading out to the cage, Schuman remained focused. “I was just running possible outcomes and ideas through my head,” he said. “I kept reviewing counterattacks, remembering to not leave myself open for the big punches he throws.”
Inside the cage, as the crowd roared, Schuman knew he had no guarantees. “Right before the fight started, I looked to my coach and teammate in my corner. My teammate, Adrian Pierson, had just lost via arm bar. I remember thinking to myself –‘I HAVE TO WIN’!
“While looking at them, my coach Gary Engels smiled and stated ‘Let’s get this!’ I looked to the crowd and saw the support of the fans, my wife, family, sponsors and friends. And in that moment I told myself, ‘It’s going to be a ‘snap or nap’ kind of night!’
“All I could think about was that I had to be the faster fighter, the stronger fighter, the smarter fighter. I had to make sure I read his body and watched every movement and counter.”
With his game plan secure in his mind, Schuman ended the fight in just 0:49 seconds of round one via belly-down arm bar.
However, no game plan set in motion is perfect. “My biggest mistake was during our clinch time,” said Schuman. “I over-stepped back, trying to overload a big knee, and I slipped. Luckily, I was able to scramble fast back to my feet.”
Win or lose, good sportsmanship is essential to every sport. Schuman has a few words he’d like to share with Finn. “Bill, I have nothing but respect for you,” he said. “Thank you for the chance to step in the cage with you and compete.”
Schuman may not know what comes next for him, but he does know that he is ready to get back in the cage. “As soon as possible!” he said. “I live for this! KOTC, Mike Camp — set it up. LET’S GO.”