Moments after pummeling Jorge Pereira so severely that the ringside doctor stopped the fight in the first round, Matt Hughes was backstage being photographed and measured by employees of a video-game company so that the Hillsboro, Illinois, native could be digitally rendered as a playable fighter in the inaugural UFC video game. His reaction to this official recognition of his growing reputation in the world of mixed martial arts? "Kids all over America and the world would be able to skip over me when picking Mark Coleman or Kevin Randleman to be their character." Made in America, Hughes' honest and self-deprecating account of his rise to the top of the UFC (nine championships and counting) reveals a small-town boy who learned about fighting and never saying die on the farms and wrestling mats of the great American Midwest. Hughes signs copies of his autobiography at 1 p.m. at the Festus Wal-Mart (650 South Truman Boulevard; 636-937-8441). Admission is free, and the book will be available for purchase.
Sat., Jan. 12, 2008