UFC 139′s Alex Soto moonlights as a dolphin trainer

Maggie Hendricks

When fighters are working up the ladder to the big time, they'll take any job to make ends meet. Cain Velasquez cleaned the mats at American Kickboxing Academy. Clay Guida was a fisherman in Alaska and then a union carpenter. Training to fight is a huge time commitment, and fighters need jobs that are flexible to deal with MMA's demands.

Alex Soto, who will make his UFC debut against Michael McDonald on Saturday, worked as a dolphin trainer. MMA Fighting reports that Soto works for the U.S. Navy, training dolphins. He started out at Sea World, when he volunteered to work with the animals because he wanted a challenge.

He'll face another stiff challenge at UFC 139, though this is not of the porpoise variety. He will face Michael McDonald on just two weeks notice. McDonald was impressive in his last three fights: a first-round submission of Clint Godfrey at WEC 52 and decision wins over Edwin Figueroa and Chris Cariaso in the UFC. Their bout will air on Spike before the pay-per-view fights begin.

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