Michelle Waterson will always be a fighter first, but she will have a lot of new opportunities coming her way after signing on with WME-IMG to represent her as a talent agency.
Waterson signed with the agency following her first-round submission win over Paige VanZant this past December and now she’s already been booked for her next fight against Rose Namajunas at FOX UFC Fight Night in Kansas City in April.
As far as her interests outside the Octagon, Waterson says there are a ton of possibilities, including acting roles and maybe even working on a book at some point down the road.
Article continues below ...
Knowing that mixed martial arts can be a highly volatile and short-lived career compared to most professions, Waterson knows she would be crazy to pass up on opportunities to expand her brand outside the cage.
“Books, movies,” Waterson told FOX Sports when asked what she’s interested in pursuing with her new agents at WME-IMG. “I think that if you don’t take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves, MMA is a very short-lived sport. You have to expand your horizons and you have to learn how to do it all in order to capitalize on everything that happens to you.
“I have interest in all of those things. I have a strong passion for teaching. I think that’s just been since I grew up in martial arts because I was so heavily influenced through my instructor. I think being in the spotlight, you have a position where you can influence younger children to grow up and follow their dreams. Not only make them their dreams but make them realistic goals and just having a young daughter, she’s just six years old, this is the perfect time to just be leading by example.”
Brandon Magnus/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Of course, WME-IMG not only represents Waterson but they also happen to be the owners of the UFC after purchasing the promotion last year for more than $4 billion.
WME-IMG also works with former women’s champion Ronda Rousey, who signed on with the talent agency long before the sale of the UFC went through in 2016, as well as former middleweight champion Chris Weidman.
Waterson will only be working with WME-IMG as a talent agency for her career outside the Octagon and while she certainly sounds excited to pursue new opportunities, her primary focus remains on fighting.
“There’s lots of opportunities on the horizon,” Waterson said. “Just trying to take it one step at a time and whatever opportunities presents itself.
“But going back to it, I have to understand what got me here and it’s the fighting and I continue to train everyday.”