MOSCOW, September 24. /TASS/. Titled American MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) fighter Jeff Monson, who earlier applied for the Russian citizenship, said on Thursday he planned to open his fighting schools for children in Russia and considers at the moment three possible venues.
Monson, 44, announced last year that he submitted documents to become a citizen of Russia and upon his visit to Moscow this June he asked Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), to help him with obtaining the Russian citizenship.
"I have been to many different cities in Russia and we have now three different places in Russia, where we have an opportunity to open a school," Monson told a news conference hosted by TASS on Thursday.
"I think opening a school is not going to be an issue, the matter is where to open the school because we have so many offers," the titled fighter said.
"We have offers in Crimea, Sochi and Smolensk right now and hopefully we will have some more options," Monson said. "My goal is to open a school and then another school and another school. It is not business, it is not about making money."
"Of course I have a family, I want to support myself, but my dream is to support children and see them excited," Monson said. "It is about them competing and growing up and having a healthy lifestyle and then to have confidence in themselves. That is my dream."
Nicknamed ‘The Snowman’ and boasting a record of 81 fights (57 wins, 23 losses, 1 draw) Monson was born in Olympia, the state of Washington, on January 18, 1971. The American fighter is the two-time winner of the ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship, and a No Gi Brazilian jiu-jitsu World Champion.
Among numerous tattoos on his body, Monson sports two tattoos in Russian saying ‘svoboda’ (freedom) and ‘solidarnost’ (solidarity). Tattoos of Hammer and Sickle (a symbol of former Soviet Union) a red and black star are also inked on Monson’s body.
In one of Moscow tattoo salons earlier this year, Monson made a tattoo running up the whole length of his left thigh with the image of Russia’s world-famous monument, The Motherland Calls. The monument, located on the Mamayev Kurgan in the Russian city of Volgograd, was erected to commemorate the heroic feat of the Soviet soldiers in one of the bloodiest WWII battles known as the Battle of Stalingrad.