MTV’s new docu-series “Caged” premiered Monday night, and after seeing it, the first reaction of castmember Wes had little to do with his performance in the cage. “Damn, I was fat and out of shape,” the amateur mixed martial arts fighter told MTV News via Skype. “I guess because I hadn’t trained and fought in so long [before] the first episode, and then me getting back into it I was just like, wow, I didn’t really realize how big I was, and then the camera, it adds, like, 10 pounds.”
“Caged” follows Wes and two fellow cage fighters, Daniel and Danger, as they try to better their lives in their small town of Minden, Louisiana. A revealing (and somewhat revolting) subplot in the premiere involved Wes trying to cut weight before a fight. He needed to shed several pounds in a short period of time. “We don’t have a sauna to go to in Minden, and I had three or four hours to make weight. And if you don’t make weight, you don’t fight,” Wes said. He decided to use the brutal Louisiana heat to his advantage. “I was like, the inside of my car’s leather, it will be like a sauna in there. So we get our sauna suit and I get in there and I’m just like, ‘Oh my God, I’m dying.’ You do what you got to do, I guess,” Wes said.
The episode’s climax, fittingly, was the big night during which Wes, Danger and Daniel all had fights. Wes recalled that the time leading up to him stepping into the cage was filled with his usual pre-fight jitters. “Can you just imagine being somewhere, and then a guy comes running up at you and he’s like, ‘I’m about to fight you right now.’ And you take that little split second that you’re so scared, and then magnify it times a hundred and then stretch it out for about two weeks long,” he said. “Because two weeks before a fight you’re like, ‘Oh, sh–, I’ve got to fight a guy in a cage. And he’s going to try to kick me in the face, and he’s going to try to hurt me.’”
During the final moments before the fight, the second-guessing comes. “You’re just sitting there and you’re waiting on them to call your name. You’re just like, ‘What am I doing here? I just want the electricity to go out, or some kind of natural disaster to happen so I don’t have to fight,’ ” Wes said. “And then they start playing your walk out music and you’re just like, ‘OK, this is what I’m here for, this is why I do this. I love this.’ And you go out there and it’s such an adrenaline rush, you really can’t explain it. It just takes over your body.”
After Wes won his fight, he watched Daniel struggle in the cage. “Daniel, I’ve known him for a long time,” Wes said. “He’s unsociable and he looks like Justin Bieber, but he’s a cool cat.”
It was clear that Daniel was having trouble. “I’m stressed out watching him,” Wes recalled. “And then he gets hit and I’m just like, ‘Oh my God.’ ” Daniel was down, and all Wes could do was watch. “You can’t do anything because in a cage fight it’s only two people,” he said. “You’ve just got to live with what happens.”
Did you catch the premiere of “Caged”? Leave your comments on the episode below!
“Caged” airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on MTV.