Not only does he mentor fighters as the owner of Adversity Training Center in Somerset, Kentucky, but he works with a the next generation as well.
“At my gym we mentor foster children and I’m in the process of filing a 501(C)(3) LLC to work with at-risk youth. They are the future and should be treated as such, even if I can only touch one life it’s worth it to me,” Lawler told BluegrassMMA leading up to his fight.
Lawler is set to face Branden Bishop (2-3) in the main event at Expo Five on Saturday, and being the last fight of the night is a big deal to him.
“It means I’ve gotta wait longer to get a burger [laughs],” joked Lawler. “I’ve never been main event before so I think it’s pretty cool; it’s kind of like the culmination of one step closer to a bigger show at the end of the day I just want to be on TV once, win lose draw just once if you knew my story and background you’d understand why I want to be able to tell my kids, my friends, the people I mentor if you work hard and never give up you can accomplish anything.”
With a 3-3 record as a pro, the fight against Bishop is a pivotal one in his career. But his career is also one that could have ended after his last fight.
Lawler briefly announced his retirement following his last bout to deal with family issues.
With those issues now solved, his career lives on. Pretty fitting for a guy who says the only thing that ever made him special is that he just won’t quit and he’s always trying to finish fights.
While he holds a brown belt in jiu-jitsu, you’ll never see a boring Ian Lawler fight. Put simply, he said, “I’ll never win a fight by hugging someone.”