Gary Balletto Jr. is just a few weeks away from the biggest fight of his life, his first professional MMA debut. The Cranston native and son of world championship boxer Tiger Balletto, currently trains six days a week, four hours a day. He says this fight is something he has trained his entire life for.
"I was born and raised in a gym, just from birth I was carried in there in my cradle. When I learned how to walk i was in the gym, at the same time I learned how to punch,"says Gary.
To give balletto some last minute training advice, world renowned trainer, Sayed Najem paid a visit to Balletto's gym. Najem is a three–time Olympian, receiving a silver medal at the '92 games in tie kwon do. Over the years he has trained many people, from Olympic athletes to celebrities. Still, he says training Balletto is an honor.
"Finding out that Gary's grandfather was a golden gloves winner, and was Rocky Marcianos best friend apparently. And his father was also golden gloves, and a world champion,"says Najem.
During the 2–hour session, his famous fighter father, Tiger, watched from the sidelines. He has no doubt in his sons ability to excel.
"Gary is a well rounded fighter, I wouldn't recommend anybody turning professional if they weren't well rounded,"Says Tiger.
Balletto's fight will be on August 14th at Twin River Casino. Gary says his overall goal is to be a world champ.