“I rank Doomsday as very good,” says Brazilian Jiu-jitsu black belt Alex Costa, who helps coach the fighter. “But as a coach, he’s always mad at me because I’m never happy. Every fight is going to be better. That’s the Wai Kru style.”

As Howard rises through the fighting ranks and faces tougher opponents, the risk of injury only becomes greater. His career as Doomsday could end any day, whether in the cage, in the gym, or out on the street, in which case he’d probably go back to school and start a new life as plain-old, mild-mannered John Howard, the electrician from Roxbury. It’s something that he thinks about, but he doesn’t let it affect his fighting.

“At the end of the day, you can’t stop fate,” he says. “I believe in fate, and I believe in God. If something’s meant to happen, it’s going to happen.”

Jonathan Seitz is a freelancer living in Allston. He can be reached at jonseitz@ymail.com.

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