May 25, 2015


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Roland Delorme, Winnipeg's UFC fighter

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Roland Delorme is paid to fight for a living.

As a mixed martial arts fighter he spends most of his time training in the gym learning the fastest route to knock an opponent unconscious.

Roland Delorme - or Rolly as he's better known - shadow boxes along with his 2 1/2 year old daughter Taliya after a sparring session at Winnipeg Elite Boxing and MMA Academy. Delorme will be the only Manitoban competing at UFC 161 on June 15 at MTS Centre.

MELISSA TAIT / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Roland Delorme - or Rolly as he's better known - shadow boxes along with his 2 1/2 year old daughter Taliya after a sparring session at Winnipeg Elite Boxing and MMA Academy. Delorme will be the only Manitoban competing at UFC 161 on June 15 at MTS Centre. Photo Store

When he's not training, Delorme is chasing his daughter around the house.

"Honestly, taking care of my 2 1/2 year-old is probably more tiring then going to the gym and working out with a bunch of grown men," he says.

Delorme, better known as Rolly, grew up in a small house in St. Norbert. He travelled extensively as a young judo competitor. He used to own a pizza restaurant in Niverville.

Now, he fights professionally with the UFC - the top tier of MMA fighting.

On Saturday - for the first time ever - he'll be paid to fight in front of a hometown crowd at the first UFC event in Manitoba.

"I want to be able to go out there and show everybody that I belong on this level, and that I'm here for a reason. I want to do the best I possibly can for my friends, family, for my city."

The crowd will include Delorme's mother, who usually watches his fights through her hands, and his younger brother, who tempts him at home with onion rings and ice cream while Delorme tries to keep his weight down for the bantamweight division limit of 135 pounds.

It's not just the hometown pressure. The fight against Edwin Figueroa will be Delorme's first in nearly a year, after surgery in December to remove bone chips from his elbow.

But if you ask Delorme, he's most excited about fighting in Winnipeg.

"That's something that I've wanted ever since I got into the UFC, it's something I wanted for so long but never though was going to happen," he says.

"There's a buzz in the city. People are starting to get to know me. This is my fourth fight in the UFC, most people think it's my first fight because it's in Winnipeg."

As for the plans for Saturday, Delorme is straightforward.

"I want to go out there and just dismantle him, I want to go out there and destroy him because that's how I'm going to make good money," he says.

"If you stand between me and money, you have a serious problem."

melissa.tait@freepress.mb.ca

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