Life has thrown a few unexpected curve balls in the direction of 26-year-old mixed martial artist Josh Samman, a standout competitor on season 17 of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) where he trained under UFC light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones. The rising middleweight has been sidelined since his sole turn in the Octagon -- a 2nd-round TKO win over Kevin Casey in April of 2013 -- while recovering from two frustrating injuries.
Some fighters and athletes have managed to enjoy the surplus of time that stems from a surprise layoff, finding solace in the ability to recharge their bodies or refocus from a mental standpoint. Samman is not among them. In the video interview embedded below, Samman relays some of the heartbreaking tragedies he's endured in his time off, how he's coped with the hardships through music and writing, and how the adversity has inevitably skyrocketed his determination.
Before concluding with a projected timetable for his return to action, Samman discusses his thoughts on Jon Jones as a fighter and coach, the rise of Olympian Daniel Cormier and how their upcoming confrontation might unfold.
Follow Josh on Twitter: @JoshSamman