Impa Kasanganay went from sleeping in his car to winning $1 million and the PFL light heavyweight championship. And his life could get even better.
Kasanganay is one of four title fights scheduled for the PFL vs. Bellator fight card on Feb. 24. He'll fight Johnny Eblen for the middleweight title. If he wins, he'll become only the second PFL fighter to hold titles in two divisions (the first was Larissa Pacheco).
"Johnny is good everywhere," he said. "He's done his thing in Bellator He dominated, he's fought well, he comes from a solid gym, he's one of those fighters who's put a stamp and made his place in history and those are the moments in the fights that you look to elevate yourself and I think it is a thing to consider like a catapulting moment, that David versus Goliath or whatever you want to look at it. Like, I'm grateful that this is the fight that I get. It's not somebody who's looked down upon. Some consider him a great fighter."
Impa Kasanganay says fight with Johnny Eblen is forcing him to 'become who I'm meant to be'
His future opponent is considered one of the best middleweights outside of the UFC. And Kasanganay isn't underestimating him.
He continued, "I respect him. I think he's earned that in ways. He pushes the pace. He strikes well, he comes to fight he's not backing down from a challenge. He's fought some of the best fighters from Gegard Mousasi. He's done his thing. And he shows that he's fought through adversity, he's been cut fighting, and kept coming forward. I like that about him. So for me, this is the fight when you start writing down what it means to be a fighter, what it means to be a warrior. Johnny is one of those fighters that fits the bill of the kind of person that I'd want to fight. I need this in order to become who I'm meant to be and believe to be, so nothing but respect, I'm looking forward to showing what I'm going to do."
Some might think winning a million dollars and potentially making history could change a man. But not Kasanganay.
"Who I come home to is still the same in the way, like my family my parents are still my parents, my friends are still my friends. You know I stay more to myself in a way so I can be focused and just train," he said while speaking to FanSided. "... My coach still yells at me and the coaches still demand the best, my training partner will still make fun of me and that's the same."