Like a cheesy Hollywood script, UFC welterweight Josh Burkman recounts the moment he locked eyes with Octagon Girl Arianny Celeste in a recent feature on Yahoo!Sports.com.
Here are the steamy details:
"... Burkman was hot, tired and sweaty and had the arms of a trained professional fighter [Chad Reiner] who was trying to choke him unconscious wrapped around his neck.
The rear naked choke is one of the most effective finishing holds in MMA. Burkman knew, even as he was gasping for a breath, that a submission loss would put his dreams of gaining a welterweight title shot in jeopardy.
As he lay on the mat, wondering how to extricate himself, his eyes gazed through the cage and into the crowd, where they met those of Celeste, who was seated at ringside.
Burkman managed to wriggle free of the choke and went on to win a unanimous decision. A few weeks later, he saw Celeste in Las Vegas. He summoned the courage to ask her to dinner. They've been an item ever since."
It gets better.
Burkman mustered the energy and will to escape because he didn't want to lose in front of the ring card siren.
Here's a snip from "The People's Warrior:"
"I saw her and I thought to myself, 'I can't let myself get choked out in front of her. I had to figure something to do."
Heroic and tender, ain't it?
I can barely contain the waterworks.
(The article actually does have a nice write-up of the upcoming UFC 71 fight between Burkman and Karo Parisyan set for next Saturday -- check it out when you get a chance).