Wes Sims traveled to Bulgaria to fight for MaxFight for a fight on June 16th against Lyubo Simeonov. The original date for the fight according to Sims was the week prior, and the delay in the fight enabled him to have some hilarious and downright scary tales. When Sims started the interview his first words were “This has been the most traumatic and fucked up thing I have ever been through. And I have been through a lot of things.”
As soon as Sims was offered the fight, the first question was who was going to be his cornerman. He was told he could have two so he asked to bring along Mike Davis and Mark Coleman. Coleman for his cornering experience and Davis because he is in law enforcement and can suss out any issues.
“I called Mike and told him that I thought my opponent could be a gangster and I knew that he would quickly get the lay of the land. I know he speaks Spanish, and I wasn’t sure if Bulgarians spoke Spanish, but in my travels with Mike he is able to quickly learn a language. You can drop him off anywhere on the planet and he can figure out what is going on.”
A ticket was booked for Davis and Sims, but Coleman’s was not. According to Sims it was for a variety of reasons.
“At first we were going back and forth about Coleman and that it would cost more as he would not only be a cornerman, but there as an appearance. It was back and forth. Then I was told the date of the fight was going to be changed and they needed to change our tickets. I knew Mike wouldn’t be able to come with as he had a show on the 14th and needed to be back for that. I informed them of this and they said to take his ticket and find someone else. I told them that I wasn’t going to not allow him to come, and if need be, I didn’t need a cornerman. They responded with that they wouldn’t pay for Coleman and if Mike was going to use the ticket, they wouldn’t change it and he had to return on the 11th like originally planned.”
Sims’s, who has been known in the past to not train for his fights, knew that the promoter was thinking this was the Sims they were going to get for the fight and thus they obliged with him not having a corner.
“My last couple of fights I didn’t look great. I didn’t train due to being injured and I had a kid coming and needed to make ends meet. Everything in the last two years has settled down and I wanted to make another run. I got in shape and I know that when the fight was booked they were hoping for the Sims that showed up to fight Bobby Lashley.”
Davis had the following to say about Sims’s shape and about getting an actual corner. “Sims has been hitting hard. He got into a good system now that his son is older. He looks great. He wasn’t six-packed out, but he had lost nearly all of his fat. He’s got good cardio. Of course when he told me he was opting to not have a corner, I told him to find someone else. He assured me that after watching video of Lyubo he would be able to win quickly.”
So Davis and Sims hopped onto the plane and headed to Bulgaria, opting to have the vacation instead of a cornerman. Immediately after they got off the plane, they realized that something wasn’t right.
“We got off the plane, got our stuff and walked through the airport. The airport was small and when we walked through the doors that were tinted, there was a camera crew filming me immediately,” stated Sims. “We looked over and saw our guys that would be following us for the next two weeks. There were three of them, two with satchels which I later found out had guns in them. I looked at Mike and asked him what he thought. Mike said it isn’t going to be good and that we were going to have problems.”
But that didn’t deter Sims. He was there and tried to make the best of it. The two of them got into the car with the three guys and headed to the hotel. Sims started off innocently enough, just going for walks.
“Everywhere we went I couldn’t shake these guys. If we left the hotel, they were following us. We went to a casino, they were there. We went to a karaoke bar and were again followed. It was non-stop. We went for a walk, and after about an hour they just showed up and said to get back in the car and they would take us to the hotel. It really felt like Rocky 4 where the two guys followed him around.”
Sims continued that it was driving him crazy and decided to try and turn the tables. “When we realized we couldn’t shake them, we decided to mess with them. We asked them questions like if they were fighting on the card to if they wanted to have sex with one of us.”
The first time they got away to explore, they tried to go to a club and at first it seemed all was well. “We went to the club and there’s only two clubs in the city. It opened at 11pm and we were there at midnight. The bouncers told us it doesn’t really start till 1am and to come back. We told them who I was and they got excited. They walked us in, showed us the place and it was a really nice club. They said to come back and they would give us the VIP. So we came back an hour later and we got stopped in the hallway. We waited out ofront and the same guy who had invited us in earlier said there were some issues. It turns out they were friends with Lyubo and he said to not let us in.”
The next morning was his first promotional appearance, a spot on the Slavi Show. The show is one of the most popular shows in Bulgaria and has been described as the “Jay Leno of Bulgaria”. Sims started to pitch ideas of what he wanted to do on the show. They all were shot down, and Sims, opted for something spontaneous instead.
“Everything we did was well planned. I didn’t have the opportunity to dictate the show. He came on and speaks Bulgarian, the translator was going real fast. They weren’t going the way I wanted it to, so I took control of it. I gave my number out on the Slavi show. The promoter didn’t attend the taping of the show with us, only a person from his entourage. So after the taping we ran into Andre and asked to watch the show with him. It was all nice and then the last three minutes I took over. As soon as that happened he got on his phone and started talking immediately. But then when I held the paper up with my phone number, within seconds my phone started blowing up. The promoter was so mad, he sent us out on a tour of the country.” (video of the show’s segment can be found at http://www.slavishow.com/en/mma-bad-boy-wes-sims-receives-high-regard-from-the-host-of-the-show/)
While he waited for the tour guide, Sims started to have fun with some of the text messages. He found someone to translate for him and the fun ensued. “I had over 200 calls and texts of people calling me. They wanted me to drive all over and meet them. There was this one call I got a translator. He started laughing and when I asked what it was about, he said the caller wanted to know every detail about my penis.”
According to Sims, the tour guide was anything less than good at her job. “She spoke very little English. She had to talk through our cab driver. Mike decided that since she was a tour guide, she should be able to answer a bunch of questions. Of course she stopped talking to us, so then we upped the questions asking things like what would she do if we got naked back in the car. Next thing we know she’s on the phone with someone.”
Shortly after, the cab was pulled over. Sims and Mike were pulled out of the car, but the driver and the tour guide were left inside. Both immediately hid their cash as they knew what was going on. “The cop talks to the driver and he says he is going to arrest us for prostitution. We tell our cab driver to tell the cop to arrest us then and this freaked our driver. He did and then the cop told him that we would go to jail or could give money. I gave him 50 lev and said that was all the money we had. The cop then goes back to his car and one of the two other cops gets out and goes up the hill. I looked at our tour guide and she was on the phone too! The cab driver then pulled out some of his own money and paid the cop to let us go. We got back in the car and told the driver what just happened. He’s translating to the guide and she’s saying no, that didn’t happen. So we pull over and kick her out of the car. After she was out of the car, I spit on her as we sped off.”
They felt bad for the cab driver and decided to take him out drinking, after all they still had the money they hid. “By the time we got back to the hotel, it was about three. The driver drove us back to the hotel completely drunk. I know that the promoter is just a couple rooms down wanting to spy on me, and after he sent us with the tour guide, I wanted to get him back. I stripped the cab driver down completely and send him in the hall. I call Andre and wake him up and start freaking out that there’s something going on in the hall. Andre comes out of his room ready to fight someone and another person comes out gun in hand. At that point the naked taxi driver goes running down the hall and the two of them start swinging at him until they realized it was just a naked man.”
The next day he felt bad for the cab driver and called him up to take him sight seeing for real. “An hour and a half after we left my phone was blowing up from the promoter asking where I was. He wasn’t speaking English well so we had our cab driver translate for us and the cab driver was told that if he had a problem with me not being able to be paid, that he would take care of him. A lightbulb went off and I decided to help the taxi driver get back some of the money he paid to the cop the night before. I called the promoter back and told him I was twenty minutes out. In reality, I was about an hour out. Then forty minutes later they called and had the driver tell him a story of how we saw some gypsy hookers and got robbed by them. I apologized to Andre and when we got back, the taxi driver got paid from the promoter and got his money back.”
After that, Sims was put on near lockdown till the fight as the antics were trying on the promoter. He wanted to train, but knew not to train at any of the gyms in the area. “The gym they had for me in the hotel was this little fitness room where all the machines were like from the 70’s and 80’s. They had one of those machines where you put the band around you and it shakes the hell out of you. I got on the treadmill and this guy came over yelling at me in Bulgarian that I was too big for the machine. I didn’t want to train where the promoter told me too, after all I didn’t want them to see how good of shape I really was in.”
The pranks died down as it got closer to fight time, but one in particular made Sims break out in full on laughter. “The name of the game is called balls-eye. Basically it is a naked hand stand against the door of someone’s hotel room. You knock on the door and when they open the door all they see are balls and penis.”
Sims holed up for the days leading up to the fight, opting to concentrate on what was going to happen versus the pranks. And while he believes the fight was rigged against him to loose, he admits that he did tap to the submission that was applied from Lyubo.
“I did tap. I never said I didn’t tap. I said the ref jumped on us the moment he applied the submission. But what I know they won’t show is the fact that Lyubo had more than a minute in between the rounds and that’s when the fight should have been stopped.”
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