Oscar ‘Superman’ Martinez had decided to retire from MMA after his upcoming bid for a belt on November 18, 2017, though any final word on the matter, according to Martinez, will actually be determined by a twelve-pound stipulation.
Before Martinez enters California Fighting Championship (CFC) 1 to meet Steven Cartwright for the CFC Lightweight Title, the long-time resident of Sonora appeared on Episode 86 of the @norcalfightmma Podcast (link here) to discuss the trophy he expects to wrap around his waist at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds. Not only will the shiny hardware mark an unforgettable memory for Martinez in MMA, the audience discovered the CFC crown at 205-pounds will simultaneously serve as an anchor, harboring the hard-hitting combatant with over a decade in the sport for just a little bit longer.
Much like Martinez’s strategy for Cartwright at CFC 1, he shot from the gates upon his introduction to the show. After the host of the @norcalfightmma Podcast, Dave Madden, welcomed Martinez and outlined that CFC 1 would be his final contest, Martinez immediately invited listeners into his mindset as a competitor.
“Here’s the thing: before we get into that [retirement], if I do get a title, you’re not really a champion until you defend it.” Martinez continued, clarifying his position on closing the door to his life as a professional prizefighter, “I kind of threw that [retirement] out there, but I don’t want this guy [Cartwright] to think that if he beats me, he retired me—because he didn’t. If I win that title, I will defend it. I was thinking about it, and—honestly—I do want that belt. But I want it to be something I earn and defend.”
Since retiring from MMA has become en vogue, for any doubters of Martinez’s willingness to walk away, he recalled his slot as the headliner was initially designed as a send-off into the sunset in his own backyard.
“He [Cartwright] and I used to be friends. He crossed the line a few years ago, and we were supposed to fight a year ago. He hurt his knee.” Although time heals wounds, Cartwright, as Martinez continued, still simmered in animosity, “I got over the issue we had, so it was no longer an issue. One night, in the middle of the night, at 1:14 am, I get a text message from Al Joslin that said, ‘Hey, Steven Cartwright sent me a message that said he wants to fight you.’ I roll over and say, ‘Yeah, I’ll fight him,’ and then went back to sleep. A bunch of promoters were coming up here and trying to get a show up here, and I was like, ‘Hey, if you let me be the main event, I’ll help you drive this [CFC 1] through.’ That was my asking gift: let me fight at home for my last time because, like I said, I was retiring.”
As the days to CFC 1 disappear from the calendar, the vision Martinez musters for how things will play out with Cartwright for CFC’s Light Heavyweight Championship could mean: Northern California’s MMA collective can expect to catch Martinez in the cage sometime soon.
“How I see it going: he comes out jab, jab, head kick—oh shit, he got taken down and beat the fuck up.”
The remainder of the fight card at CFC 1 includes:
Oscar Martinez vs. Steven Cartwright for the CFC Light Heavyweight Title
Abner Perez vs. Brandon Bettencourt in the flyweight division
Richard Rigmaden vs. Joseph Ramirez in the middleweight division
Benjamin Lewis vs. TBD in the welterweight division
Ernie Juarez vs. Tyler Milburn in the lightweight division
Jaime Hutcheson vs. Joshua Subjack in the middleweight division
Laura Anderson vs. Kailyn Hansen in the bantamweight division
Gregory Morales vs. David McDaniel in the light heavyweight division
Wesley Greene vs. Louis De La Pena in the lightweight division
Ramiro Hernandez vs. Michael Reid in the super heavyweight division
Adam DeNu vs. Shane Rivera in the cruiserweight division