To say Jason "The Athlete" MacDonald is a busy man is a bit like calling Mt. Everest a nice little hill: It's massive understatement.
The Alberta fighter, who traded in his jail guard uniform for surf trunks and five-ounce gloves, shares his time between being a full-time fighter, a new business owner and a father of four.
He is in the middle of a typically-Canadian moment when he stops to talk about the hectic pace.
"It's non-stop at our house. No time to watch soaps in the afternoon, that's for sure," says the 32-year-old middleweight between picking up the kids from school, running to a doctor's appointment and getting his oldest ready for hockey. "It's busy, but I'm living a dream."
MacDonald burst onto the international fight scene 16 months ago, disposing of reality TV favourites Ed Herman and Chris Leben in quick order. He has since suffered a pair of losses to former UFC champ Rich Franklin and Yushin Okami and is hoping the UFC's first foray into Canada in April will spark a win streak.
MacDonald (19-9) will take on Winnipeg UFC vet Joe Doerksen (39-11) at UFC 83 on April 19 in Montreal.
Georges St. Pierre's title match against Matt Serra will headline the card. The event, which sold out in one minute last week, will be the biggest crowd to take in a mixed-martial-arts event in North America and already stands as the quickest sellout in UFC history.
The 6-foot-3 MacDonald is no stranger to Doerksen. The two fought in 2005 with MacDonald notching a rear-naked choke victory.
"When you beat a fighter and you beat him convincingly, you move on and I thought that fight was behind me," he says of Doerksen.
"But I'm not paid to match fights and if the UFC wants me to fight Joe Doerksen, that's exactly what I'll do."
MacDonald, who had spent time last year training in New Mexico with the Greg Jackson camp, says he hopes to do all his prep for the Montreal card in his adopted home of Red Deer in the new gym he's just opened.
"This training camp I'm going to try to bring some fighters to me. With four kids and the family it's a little tougher for me to get away," he says.
MacDonald hopes to train with some of Jackson's fighters -- who include Nate Marquardt, Keith Jardine and Rashad Evans -- as well as former Pride star Dennis Kang. Still on leave from his correctional officer job at Bowden medium-security institute, MacDonald says he doesn't miss the old grind one bit.
"The job was good for me and I made a lot of wonderful friends. But do I miss going to work from 3-11 and driving 25 minutes and having a boss to tell me to do this or do that? I don't miss it."
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