“There’s a lot of opportunities, especially next year, but that’s predicated on me continuing to win,” he said. “Obviously I’d love the opportunity to fight for the UFC if they came to Canada – I think that’s everybody’s end game – but I’m pretty confident that the trajectory of restrictions and stuff like that are going in the right direction now, and fingers crossed that nothing happens to delay that.”
In the meantime, yes, Larsen has to fight, make statements, and defend his title against anyone willing – and able – to face him. And that’s what it’s all about for him at this point.
Just fight. No matter where or against whom.
“When I first started fighting, I thought it would be cool to take a couple fights and get paid a little bit of money to punch some people in the head in front of friends and family, but I haven’t had my fingers crossed for anything,” he said. “If an opportunity comes up, that’s sweet, but I’m definitely taking things as they come. I’m not gonna be crushed if I don’t get the call from the UFC, I’m not gonna be crushed if I don’t get a fight. I’ve got a job, I’ve got everything else. If an opportunity comes up, I’ll jump at it, but it’s not like I’ve got my heart set on anything.”
So what is it about this game that makes him do it after all these years? A self-admitted “troubled youth,” Larsen battled through the loss of his father to cancer in 2008, and then found his way in life, eventually finding a home in a sport where he now owns a championship belt, a 7-2 record, and the power and potential to one day make it to the big show.
“My main motivator is working towards a goal of this caliber,” he said. “My life is better and I’m a better person when I’ve got a fight in the cards. I’m in the gym, I’m training, I’m focused, I’m working towards something. It changes my entire lifestyle and my day-to-day to be working towards something like this. With other things, I don’t really have that passion and that motivation. I work on an oil rig; I’m not trying to save the world by digging up dinosaurs. I don’t get behind anything the way I get behind fighting, and I think the benefits of that has in my life make all the sacrifice worth it.”
Doesn’t want to save the world by working on an oil rig? Didn’t he ever see Armageddon?
“I never want to be in charge of my own oxygen supply,” he laughs.