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“I don’t blame anybody else but myself for my performances,” the Makaha native said. “The frustration is more in myself, knowing that I’m better than that. Why am I having these woulda, shoulda couldas? When I fought Oliveira, even if I came out with a loss, I gave everything I could during that fight. But these last fights with Gillespie and Vannata, I didn’t. Even the Cowboy fight, I felt I still could have continued. But I let the judges and the referee dictate that. You can’t let that dictate it. I hate decisions and I hate looking like I need help or need the ref to step in and save me. Because I definitely don’t need that.”

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It’s the Hawaiian “just scrap” mentality taken to the next level, something the 33-year-old has always taken pride in. It’s just who he is, making you wonder where he would be without martial arts.

“I never pictured not doing it,” Medeiros said. “Martial arts has been my longest relationship I committed to. I’ve been doing it since five, as long as I can remember doing it, and I’m still doing it today and I’m able to take care of my responsibilities. I know I was put on this Earth to make things better and to entertain. If it ain’t in front of the camera and fighting, it’s going to be connecting with somebody and living a grateful life. We’ll figure that out later, because right now, even though I’ve been in the darkest places, this is the most joyfulness I’ve had in my life. I’m able to live like a kid. When a kid wakes up, they’re just happy. They just want to be happy.”

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Yancy Medeiros is happy. That’s usually his default mode, but it’s even more apparent today, when May 22 begins the next chapter of his life. So all good, then?

“No complaints,” he said. “I woke up on an island, not hungry, not cold. It could be worse.”

Medeiros laughs, knowing that he’s back where he belongs.

“When you learn to love yourself in a dark place, when light comes, everything else is very bright for you, and I feel like that’s what 2020 has done for me, and I’ll show that May 22nd,” he said. “It’s time for me to shine again, implement my brand and get back on a winning streak. I ain’t here to complain, I’m here to represent and entertain. The wait is over.”


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