Fight Night LO 3.15-22

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

The 4th of July holiday may be in the rear view mirror, but Thor Skancke (6-6 MMA) saved his fireworks for July 10th. On that night Skancke will be taking on a very tough Jason Cordero (5-6 MMA) in the main event of ‘Fight Night 3′, and as always he promises to bring his own breed of fireworks.

“I am looking to put the pace on him early”, Skancke said. “He is not going to get past round 2. If he (Cordero) trained real hard his reward will be losing in the 2nd round, If he took me lightly he won’t last past the first!” Skancke said. At first the prediction may seem full of bravado but for Skancke its how he handles the reality of fighting.

Even though he sees his hand being raised, Skancke refuses to take anyone lightly. “I am physically and emotionally unable to take anyone lightly, anybody has a chance to beat me, so I train the same way every time.” Skancke said. “I come to knock you out quickly, I want to punch your teeth down your throat” Skancke said.

So although it may be an athletic contest Skancke makes no bones about his attitude when it comes to fighting!  “I don’t play games, I take every fight as a threat.”

Maybe that is why so many people come to watch him fight. Consistently one of the top draws on the local MMA scene for some reason Skancke translates to fight fans. Its not only his name that sets him apart, he truly is a showmen. From his entrance to his appearance, and his comical way Skancke is a guy you want to like. His fighting style reinforces that belief. Although he is awkward with the notion of popularity, he is not oblivious to his drawing power.

“People can tell when someone is the genuine article.” Skancke said. “I am a pretty exciting fighter to watch.  Many guys leave it ‘all out there’, but I handle business with a ferocity, and a reckless abandonment that most fighters lack, I have a kamikaze way about doing work, and I think thats why i put asses in seats.”

Skancke, a notorious brawler has spent the last year or so fine tuning his ground game. Recently under the tutelage of UFC/WEC veteran Gabe Ruediger, Skancke has made huge strides to increase not only his technique, but his confidence as well.

“My ground game has always been decent, I even won a few grappling contests, but for some reason in MMA it just wasn’t working. It took a new coach (Ruediger) to tie it all together, and to instill the confidence I needed in order to execute on the ground.” Skancke said. With his last win coming via submission it is difficult to argue with the results.

July 10th will be the test. In the end, the fight game may be cruel but its quite simple. Each fight produces a hammer and nail. For Skancke, the ends justify the means. The work will speak for itself, until then we can only anticipate. Until then we can only be satisfied with the fireworks we have seen, yet we can revel that their are still some more to come!

Thor Skancke Fights out of Tarzana Boxing Club/Systems Encino/10th Planet HQ

He is Sponsored By: Bottle and Pint, “The Hell and The Hunger” by  Mike Reynolds (In stores now), Pain Away, and Nutri Shop of Woodland Hills, and Ten Braves Apparel

He would like to thank his coaches Bernie Hopalian, Gabe Ruediger, Chris Buckner, and his manager George Bastmajyan. He would also like to thank all the fans that always come out in droves to support him. 

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Videoed And Edited By: Arin Ian Lights Out Promotions

Daniel Clark (3-2 MMA) Is one of Southern California’s most exciting young fighters, and he makes his return to the Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing Cage on July 10th at The Sportsmen’s Lodge in Studio City. Clark, a muay thai specialist returns to action after almost 8 months on the shelf due to nagging injuries.

Now fully healed, and with his edge as sharp as ever, Clark will be looking to make an example of the very well rounded Marlen Magee. Magee, currently in the midst of a 3 fight win streak, will be out to prove that he is nobodies stepping stone. The fight on paper could be an early candidate for Fight of The Night, so make sure you are in your seats early for this one!

For Tickets go to: http://www.valleyfightnight.com

 

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By: Jonathan M King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John J Walsh The Clinch Report and Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

The wait is almost over, the time is drawing near. ‘Fight Night 3′ returns to the Sportsmen’s Lodge courtesy of Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing. Following in the footsteps of previous ‘Fight Night’ installments, tickets are almost already sold out, and July 10, is still over a week away. For Tickets go to www.ValleyFightNight.com

The near sellout crowd is set to witness an absolutely stacked card, from ‘rooter to the tooter’, the card features a unique blend of battle tested veterans looking to punch their tickets back to the show, and hungry young predators looking to make a name for themselves as The City of Angels bears witness.

The main event features local legend, and avid face puncher Thor Skancke (6-6 MMA) who will take on the grappler Jason Cordero (5-6 MMA). The classic matchup of grappler vs. striker will be on display once again in this bout. Will it be a battle of transitions? Or will the lights go out in Studio City? A fight that cannot be missed!

The Co Main event features Alfred Khashakyan (4-1 MMA) vs Anthony Paredes (3-1 MMA). Khashakyan is arguably one of the top prospects in the area. His punches leave opponents unconscious, sipping their meals through straws. However this time, he may have finally found a rival with equal pedigree. Paredes comes in with a very well rounded striking game, backed up by a stifling wrestling game. If he can get Khashakyan to the mat, he may be able to maintain a solid advantage. This is another fight that could end being a marathon, or a sprint. Either way is another battle of top prospects you will eventually see fighting in the UFC.

The card also features the return of UFC and Strikeforce veteran Eddie Mendez (7-3). Mendez is looking to return to form, coming off of two very tough loses, one being his UFC debut the other being a title fight to now UFC fighter Kevin Casey under the RFA umbrella. He will be a facing a fighter very much in the same situation. Johnny Mercurio (5-6 MMA) is coming off of two tough losses himself, one of those being his Bellator MMA debut. These two veterans will be meeting head to head full speed, at a catchweight of 175 lbs. This one should be zero to sixty, in an instant. Put your seatbelt on!

Also on the Card:

Marcos Bonilla vs. Adel Al Tamimi (1-1 MMA) Both fighters are exciting strikers with very different styles. Bonilla has deadly accurate hands, that make a mess when he throws them around. Add in his footwork, and snapping leg kicks and he is a nightmare for anyone. Al Tamimi may be the perfect match. If he can keep his distance, and move in and out of Bonilla’s range, his karate style and hammering kicks can accumulate damage quickly, and his pace is always very measured. This fight could produce the *Knockout of The Night Candidate.

Ron Scolesdang (4-2 MMA) vs Paul Amaro (3-5 MMA) Both fighters are veterans of the ‘Fight Night’ series and always come ready to perform. What happens when a typhoon meets a tornado? This fight should give you the answer. Scolesdang is looking to build off his last ‘Fight Night’ performance, while Amaro is looking to end a five fight skid. With both fighters only knowing one speed, this fight should get the blood going.

Daniel Clark (3-2 MMA)vs Marlen Magee (3-2 MMA) This fight features two very well rounded tacticians, who have both been on the verge of the next level for quite some time. Clark may be the more well rounded fighter, but Magee is riding a 3 fight win streak, and will need to utilize his wrestling to neutralize the jiujitsu of his foe. Clark has all the tools for this game, however its been 8 months since his last fight. Ring rust is something Magee will certainly being looking to expose. This fight could produce the evenings slickest submission! *Submission of The Night Candidate

Dmitry Gerasimov (4-3 MMA) vs Max Ceniceros (6-2 MMA) Another early candidate for Fight of the Night. Ceniceros is currently riding a five fight win streak and standing in the way of his sixth, a one very tough Russian. Gerasimov’s karate pedigree and aggressive style coupled with Ceniceros explosiveness will make this fight one of the best on the card. *Fight of the Night Candidate.

Joe Bryant vs Joe Hernandez Whenever the heavyweights get locked in the cage you cannot afford to blink. This fight should come with that as a warning label. Both Bryant and Hernandez are both young, strong and extremely hungry. This fight could go either way, but it doubtfully will see a judges scorecard. Remember Don’t Blink. *Knockout of The Night Candidate

Levon Sargsyan (2-2 MMA) vs Chris Rodriguez (1-2 MMA) Intriguing bout that pits two talented prospects, cut from similar molds, in a fight that should deliver machine-gun action from the opening bell. Make sure you get to your seats early this is a fight that is certain to entertain.

Vardan Sholinian (5-1 MMA)  vs Anthony Hernandez (4-0 MMA) Hernandez undefeated atop a four fight KO pony, is risking his undefeated record against perhaps his toughest opponent yet. Sholinian one of the top young prospects emerging from Team GFC possesses heavy hands, a strong ground game and a granite chin. How is this not a main event? This one is worth the price of admission alone! *Knockout of The Night Candidate

Matthew Spencer (2-0 MMA)  vs Jonathan Ferrell (0-1 MMA) Ferrell making his ‘Fight Night’ debut will be looking to showcase his striking skills early. Spencer will be looking to utilize his strength and grappling skills to bring Ferrell into deep water, where he can drown him. Whoever wins, it should be a fun scrap to watch.

Izic Fernandez (1-0 MMA) vs Derion Chapman (1-2-1 MMA) How often does the curtain jerker actually have a chance to be Fight of The Night? This one does. Both fighters recently became professionals after extensive amateur backgrounds. This fight could end up being too close to call! *Fight of The Night Candidate

 

 

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Video and Edited By: Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report
Chad ‘The Savage’ George has been around the mixed martial arts block a few times. He understands the game as well as anyone. He first burst into the rankings while fighting for the now defunct WEC (Which was purchased by ZUFFA in 2008 and later absorbed in 2010). While under the Zuffa umbrella, George earned his first win over John Hosman before losing to Scott Jorgensen, and Antonio Banuelos. The latter of the two bouts was a title eliminator bout, a fight George lost by a close decision.

Leading up to his last fight in the WEC, George was the subject of a documentary called “Occupation Fighter” which received a huge following on Netflix. The movie documented his training camp leading up to the bout with Banuelos. The movie brought a lot of attention to George, and it looked as though the UFC would be calling. Shortly after his last fight in the WEC, the UFC absorbed the promotion, however they only created one new division, leaving George and a host of others without a job.

Not one to wait, ‘The Savage’ returned to the regional scene and quickly picked up 3 wins in a row. Once again on the precipice, George stepped up to face current UFC contender Joe Soto under the Tachi Palace banner. George started out doing very well until he made a mistake and got caught in a choke that cost him the fight.

A subsequent loss to UFC bantamweight Cody Gibson followed . Then the storms came. The normal struggles that plague fighters began to pile up on George, however they were happening all at once. Two losses in a row set back his aspirations of UFC gold, but the injuries that followed threatened to end his career. A back injury and other assorted ailments left George’s fight career in limbo, however through the turmoil George found another passion; coaching.

George split with the former gym and created his own brand in California Mixed Martial Arts and Fitness. In a very short period of time the CMMA team has left an undeniable mark on the Southern California fight scene. The wins continued to pile up for the team, and although the head coach was proud of his new family, something was missing.

While getting the gym prepared and his injuries tended too, George soon found himself scratching at the old itch himself. A win over Sam Rodriguez on the regional scene primed George for his return to the national spotlight. He found that opportunity inside the Bellator MMA cage.

During the fight his opponent Mark Vorgeas attempted a guillotine choke however George deftly passed to side control where he applied what has become known as a ‘Von Flue’ choke. (A shoulder choke, that is named after Jason Von Flue who used the technique often with success!) George, an accomplished grappler knew his opponent was in a precarious situation and could tell by his disrupted breathing that the end was imminent.

As Vorgeas drifted into a state of unconsciousness a rather bizarre discussion ensued. “He’s out!”, George stated as he postured up, ready to drop hammers that remained holstered. ‘No he’s not!’ the referee blindly countered. After a few weird moments the referee looked in and finally agreed waiving off the fight.

The win and perhaps the bizarre circumstances behind the victory again thrust George into the spotlight. This time not as young gun with pink hair, but as a seasoned veteran and a true ambassador for the sport. Normally fighters are taught to wait for the referee to pull them off before relenting their attack. Had George acted like most, the whole sport itself would have been colored with the barbaric brush once again.

Although his recent win for Bellator MMA grabbed them a ton of notoriety (which they most definitely exploited), for some reason they have yet to book him another fight. In George it appears they could have what the UFC lacks, a marketable 135lbs fighter that could translate to the masses outside of the cage.

Instead it appears Bellator would prefer to promote aging legends and ‘never have beens’ whose only relevance is in projected ratings on a piece of paper. However one thing is certain in the MMA world one man gathers what another man spills, and its only a matter of time before the UFC realize the earning potential a fighter like George can bring.

 

Video  —  Posted: June 6, 2015 in Combat Sports, UFC
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By: Jonathan M. King

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

And Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Jose Lopez looking for the finish!

Jose Lopez looking for the finish!

History sets the tone. It may not always give you an accurate depiction of the present, but the past tells the story. Yesterday is what makes us look forward to today. In the fight world, the past serves as a reminder as where you are, where you were, and most importantly how far you have come!

When Santiago Diaz (3-1) looks back at his still young amateur career he can see progress. After losing his first bout (a close decision), Diaz has rallied with 3 straight impressive wins, with two of those victories coming by way of  impressive knockout. The string of victories have vaulted Diaz up the state rankings, where he sits as the #5 Heavyweight.

His opponent Jose Lopez (4-0), is no stranger to Diaz. In fact it was Lopez who handed Diaz his first and only loss. Since that win, Lopez has only managed to fight once, a bout he won via disqualification. Unfortunately since no one will fight him, his inactivity has led to his current ranking as the #7 Heavyweight in the state, despite his win over Diaz.

History’s only flaw, is today. Today history has melted into the present, and currently we have two colossal men set to face off for the second time. Lopez looks to remain undefeated as an amateur, and a more confident Diaz will look to avenge his only loss while maintaining his current win streak.

This fight has the makings of being better than the epic first bout. Will Diaz’s new found success in the cage carry him over the undefeated Lopez? Will Lopez once again be able to vanquish his familiar foe? (Insert Batman Music Here)

There is only one way to find out! Come to the Hollywood Park Casino on May 30th, buy a ticket and enjoy the carnage! For tickets and information go to: www.SparStarPromotions.com

 

Video By: Arin T Ian and His Team Of Killers

Check out the video highlights from Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing.

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By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Photos By: Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Walking out of the Sportsmen’s Lodge in Studio City among the crowd, the same sentiment reverberated multiple times on the way to the car. “Hey man, when are you guys going to do another one?”

Once again the Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing team has succeeded in putting together one hell of an entertaining night of fights. ‘Fight Night 2′ featured some of the regions top mixed martial artists, in a wide range of weight classes. The main event featured a mixed of young talent, and hard hitting veterans that left the crowd satisfied and asking for more.

Six fighters on the card in particular had heavier burdens than normal. With the up coming anniversary of the Armenian Genocide at the hands of the Ottoman Empire as the back drop, 6 Armenian fighters took to the cage to fight for not only themselves but for a nation as well. Alfred Khashakyan, Levon Sarsyan, Armen Bakanyan, Tigran Grigoryan, Davit Yeghiazaryan, and Leon Shahbazyan each represented their Armenian roots with hard fought efforts that led to a 5-0-1 record on the evening.

In the co main event of the evening Alfred Khashakyan plowed through Blackhouse MMA fighter Vitor Oristanio (1-3 MMA) with a first round KO that left the young Oristanio unconscious. After trading kicks early on, Khashakyan caught a charging Oristanio on the chin with an uppercut that folded his legs beneath him. Wasting little time, Khashakyan dove in with some vicious right hands that with the mat underneath gave Oristanio’s head no place to go! The last punch removing him completely from his senses. The knockout, his fourth in a row, puts Khashakyan in a prime position to get a call from the UFC. Normally fighting at 135 lbs, Khashakyan’s power and wrestling back-round immediately make him a contender in the bantamweight division.

The second co main event saw local fan favorite Thor Skancke (6-5 MMA) defeat journeyman Daniel McWillams (9-24 MMA) in the first round via submission (Americana). Skancke showcased his heavy hands early in the first round, landing with heavy hooks to the body of McWilliams before the fight found itself on the ground. McWilliams flirted several times with an arm bar/ triangle transition, but eventually Skancke threw his legs to the side and  landed in side control. Once there a few ground strikes softened McWilliams enough to allow Skancke to get a hold of a wrist lock. Which he rotated into the Americana, finishing the fight.

The win for Skancke returned him to the right side of .500. He also didn’t receive any damage, making him eligible for the next card at ‘Fight Night 3’!

Over all the event was extremely entertaining. The fights were a good blend of Knockouts and submissions, with a few leading up to the suspense of a judges decision. We saw a Liz Tracy make a huge splash in her pro debut, with a big upset over Maria Rios. We also will probably being saying goodbye to Alfred Khashakyan who now stands 4-1 in the midst of  a 4 fight KO streak. He should be getting a call from Sean Shelby and Joe Silva at the UFC very soon,

Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing put together some pretty amazing events. The dynamic blend of young talent, coupled with well known regional talent makes them a highly desired promotion for fighters. There are no stepping stones at a ‘Fight Night’ event. Like Thor Skancke said following his fight, “If you are not in the UFC, this is where the best competition is!” and like Annie Lennox said, “Who am I to disagree!”

 

 

 

 

Fight Night LO 3.15-83

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Photos By: Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

After a very solid amateur career Erick Gonzalez (2-0 MMA) leapt into the professional ranks with a :26 second KO over Derrion Chapman. In that fight Gonzalez connected with a vicious elbow ending the fight in less than :30. His second fight went a little bit longer but ended in the same fashion.

Gonzalez took on a very tough Christian Bizarretty (1-3 MMA) and quickly took control of the fight landing the more effective strikes. Bizarretty was on defense pretty much from the onset of the fight, and was never able to get settled. Gonzalez utilized a stifling top game to keep Bizarretty flattened out, once the fight found its way to the floor.

Once Gonzalez had both hooks in with his opponent flat as a pancake, the ground and pound from the back mount reigned down. It was only a matter of time before veteran referee Mike Beltran had seen enough. With the win, Gonzalez continues to develop into a legitimate prospect. However the competition Gonzalez faces will continue to improve, therefore he will have to train harder and smarter than ever before if he wants to maintain that momentum!

Fight Night LO 3.15-47

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Fighting in your debut can bring on a weird spectrum of emotions, or in the case of Liz Tracy its simply just another day at the office. Minutes before her walk out Tracy stood alone at the entrance to the ballroom stoic. Placidly pacing it was impossible to tell she was preparing for a fight. Her calm nature and cold stare almost made it seem Tracy knew something we were all missing.

Her opponent Maria Rios (2-2 MMA) came in with three times the experience, and would possess a huge size and reach advantage.  Early on it appeared that the reach advantage would tell the tale, as Rios kept Tracy on the end of her jab. However Tracy was able to get inside and drop Rios, who seemed to be concerned with the take down. Rios was never able to recover and perhaps her difficult weight cut coming into the fight contributed.

Once the fight was grounded, Tracy deftly took positional control and transitioned to the back. With one hook in Tracy was able to get her forearm under the chin of Rios, securing the choke and the finish in her first fight as a professional.

As her hand was raised the shocked crowd caught there first glimpse of a smile. One undoubtedly brought on by the realization that she did in fact know something, we all had only just recently discovered!

Fight Night LO 3.15-28

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

For almost two minutes both George Garcia (2-2) and Ron Scolesdang (3-2 MMA) kept the entire crowd on the edge of their seats. From the opening bell both fighters threw heavy hands, with little regard for defense.

At first it was Gracia who tested Scolesdang’s chin early and often. However, Scolesdang’s beard never faltered. After surviving Garcia’s initial charge, it was Scolesdang who struck the decisive blow. After landing with a left, Garcia looked to follow but did so recklessly and walked right into a Scolesdang right hook that starched the advance.

The shots that followed fell Garcia leaving him prone on the canvas forcing the referee to prevent any further damage. Although the fight did not last very long, it certainly delivered. It is rare see two well rounded prospects square off this early in their careers and the fight was certainly one no one who will soon forget.