Posts Tagged ‘Bob Cook’

By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Champions are made, they are not born. It takes years of work, unyielding dedication, daily sacrifices, and even a little luck to get to the top of the mountain. In the world of MMA, that mountain is made up of the souls you’ve defeated. Each victory brings with it a target, which beams brighter and looms larger, with each win.

There is a “Ying and Yang”, to be recognized in a sport early on in your career. Pedigree can open doors for you and exposure can add zeroes to paychecks, however the learning curve is steep and unforgiving. For every Peyton Manning, there is a Ryan Leaf.

So although those doors may be unlocked with your name, your performance ultimately is what keeps the doors open. For some this ‘target’ can be an uncomfortable burden, for others it can be their ultimate motivation. For Chris Honeycutt (1-0 MMA), the latter is true! “I’m used to having a target on my back!”, Honeycutt said. “That target on my back is a positive thing, it means I am doing the right thing!”

For many this ‘target’ carries with it extraordinary pressure to perform. Often times the anxiety to perform stifles the performance. This is not the case with Honeycutt. “If you don’t feel pressure you are not doing something right!” the affable young fighter said. “It motivates me, I don’t plan on being average, I plan on being the best.” Honeycutt said.


To ensure his success Honeycutt has surrounded himself with a top notch team of advisers, managers and trainers. Training primarily in Fresno CA, the east coast native has found a home at Dethrone Base Camp where he trains with owner and MMA legend Josh Koscheck (Fellow Edinboro College Alumni). Now training full-time under the watchful eye of John Salter and ‘Kos’ Honeycutt focuses on every aspect of the game.

Methodically he began to transition from the power wrestler, into a well rounded and disciplined martial artist. As rapid as his growth has been, each day at the gym serves as a reminder that there is still much to learn. “I have a hard time keeping up with these guys!” Honeycutt said. “It’s not easy working with Lavar(Johnson), Koscheck and Salter, but each week I’m getting more fluid, and more confident.” Honeycutt said.

When his future calls, Honeycutt will rely on the wisdom of his team. “DeWayne Zinkin and Bob Cook have been in business a long time, they guide my path.” Honeycutt said. For now, “It’s my job to get better and to train hard.”

Last year Honeycutt made his successful debut with the UPC Unlimited Promotion winning with impressively with his trademark ground and pound. With the win and a few more months on training under his belt, for Honeycutt the skies the limit!

His next fight will be May 11th in Fresno CA at the Sierra Athletic Club (For tickets http://upcunlimited.vbotickets.com/event/upc_15/3032) for the UPC UNLIMITED Promotion, and will also be featured on there June card at the Agua Caliente Casino.

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By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

The State of California has more mixed martial arts events than anywhere else in the country. So, very often the product becomes watered down. Many promotions have been in business for so long, that the display of exciting fights becomes secondary to running a business. This is why it is refreshing to see a fairly young promotion breaking through the model of ‘regional’ mixed martial arts promotions.  UPC Unlimited based out of Fresno Ca, has created an exciting environment for some of the sports best prospects!


Going to a regional event becomes that much more exciting when you see fighters that are destined for Bellator or the UFC. Much like the minor leagues in other sports, these regional promotions can and have developed some of the sports most recognizable names. Creating an environment for young fighters to grow while also allowing veterans to re-tool their games is the goal for every promotion. Consistently achieving this goal, is what separates UPC Unlimited from the rest of the pack.

The roster of fighters is quite an impressive mix of young stars, and savvy veterans including: Poppies Martinez, Steve Stryker, Steve Swanson, Billy Evangalista, Zac Bucia, Tim Eastom, and several fighters that are featured on NUVO TV’s Fight Factory including Ron Kessler, Chris Honeycutt, Gabriel Carrasco, and many other great fighters. The impressive and extensive roster allows the promotion and matchmakers the flexibility to stack several exciting cards in succession, that leave each fighter hungry, and each spectator enthralled.

UPC 15 is scheduled to take place May 11th in Fresno at The Sierra Sport & Racquet Club. For tickets go to http://upcunlimited.vbotickets.com/event/upc_15/3032.
If you are a fan of Mixed Martial Arts, this is a show you can not miss!

by:Jonathan King

Wrestling in MMA, may be the strongest of all bases for an athlete to excel in the world of Mixed Martial Arts. As UFC commentator Joe Rogan has pointed out several times. The MMA ranks are littered with  former collegiate  wrestling champions. As Rogan pointed out the competitive wrestler is a different breed, an animal-like humanoid who literally starves for competition. This rare mentality translates poetically to the organized violence that is MMA. Simply put, wrestlers know what it takes to win.

Chris Honeycutt (Dethrone Base Camp) is cast in the familiar mold that several current and former champions originated from. As an NCAA finalist, Honeycutt announced his intentions to pursue a career as a mixed martial artist. Immediately making him one of the hottest sought after prospects in the sport. After a short tryout, he signed on to become a member of Dethrone Base Camp in Fresno California, alongside fellow Edinboro alumni Josh Koscheck.

Koscheck’s transition from wrestler to striker is legendary, his protege Honeycutt’s athleticism should translate similarly. In his debut, at UPC Fights Honeycutt was dominating the early exchanges with powerful shots, and only resorted to his wrestling pedigree once he caught a kick parlaying the defensive move into a single leg take-down. Once on the mat, Honeycutt’s transitions were extremely sharp. Taking his opponents back he ended the fight with a barrage of strikes to his opponents head.

With his debut in the rear view mirror, Chris Honeycutt is well on his way to a successful career. However the transition from prospect to contender is never a guarantee. So far he has made excellent choices with regard to his team and training partners. Under the watchful eyes of Bob Cook, Josh Koscheck, and DeWayne Zinkin his path is well lit. However its his foundation as a wrestler, the work ethic instilled since childhood, that will assure his success.

 

 

 

 

Phil “The New York Bad Ass” Baroni is one of the early pioneers in the sport of Mixed MArtial Arts. The Massapequa Long Island native, has fought in some of the biggest stages in the world. Baroni became an immediate fan favorite with his brash style, his unapologetic demeanor, and his vicious aggressiveness. With his legacy assured, and losses piling up many people wondered why Baroni was still fighting at all.  Baroni recently said in our 30 minute interview. “I’m a Pride fighter.”

Below is a few of the questions from our MMA discussion.

JK:You have been fighting since 2000, in some of the biggest shows in the world. Why in your own words do you still compete?

Baroni:”I’m a pride fighter, you know. I fight for money. Records are for DJ’s, Money talks and bullshit walks. But my goal is to win the One FC belt. However, a shiny belt only puts food on the table if you sell it on ebay, at this point in my career money talks.”

JK: You seemed to be a different fighter in your last fight,(win at One FC Debut) do you feel more comfortable fighting under the unified Pride Rules? (with soccer kicks and knees to grounded opponents)

Baroni: “Yeah, I’m a New York street fighter. I’ve been kicking people in the head since I was a little kid! But I play by the rules whatever they are.”

JK: What was the difference between the last fight, and the one before, the one you lost to Holland in Denver?

Baroni: “I have to give a lot of credit to my cornerman, Mike Swick. Everyone before had been telling me to pace myself, and try not to get tired, but Swick told me to be the old Phil Baroni, the guy who comes out guns blazing, and something clicked in my head. At the time I was listening to too many people, my own press clippings, but Swick told me to fight my fight, and thats what I did. He understands me, he was coming off a few losses and a long lay off as well, so he knew where i was at”

JK: The Holland fight was featured on the “Fight Factory” television show. Did having the cameras on you put any added pressure on you? It was a pretty heart wrenching scene with you wife crying after the loss.

Baroni: “The show didn’t show it, but Javier Mendez begged me not to take that fight. I had a few major injuries that hadn’t healed yet, and I took the fight cause i needed the pay day. I should have never taken that fight! I didnt watch that fight, still…I’d rather watch the last one!”

JK: Good segway. How do you feel about Jon Jones not taking the Chael Sonnen fight on short notice?

Baroni: “I would have taken the fight, but look what happened last time, I lost. But, I’m not Jon Jones. I think everyone should get off this kids back. He is the champion, the Boss, what he says goes. Would I have taken the fight, ‘yes’ but who the hell am I? I am not sponsored by Nike, when you’re the champion you get to make those decisions. I don’t think it was his fault the event got cancelled. He is young. In this sport he doesn’t even have hair on his balls yet, is he brash and cocky, ‘yes he is’ but he is the champion, and the champ calls the shots, do you think Don King ever forced Mike Tyson to fight? Tyson would have told King to go fuck himself!”

JK: How has training at AKA changed you as a fighter?

Baroni: “It hasn’t really changed me, but I get to train with the best all the time! Everyone here is a great!”

JK: Did any of the drama between Josh Koscheck and Javier Mendez have any effect on the team?

Baroni: “On me, no. But the team and the trainers yeah it caused a strain. A lot of the fighters were close to Josh, some aren’t. I personally respect the guy, he is a former NCAA champion, and he is super tough…trains his fucking ass off! But business is business and that was it. It disrupted the coaches and managers, but not really the team. at one time Javier and Josh were really close, so there are personal things involved. thats none of my business.”

JK: How did you feel when all of this stuff was airing on television?

Baroni: “Would I have said and done things differently? Maybe I don’t know I got a big fucking mouth too, but yeah maybe some of it was better left off camera.”

JK: How was it having your life documented at every turn?

Baroni: “I’m used to the cameras. I’ve been in this game for a long time, I don’t even pay attention to them.I got nothing to hide.”

JK: What is next for the New York Bad Ass, I saw some rumors that you may be signing with Rey Sefo?

Baroni: “I would love to fight for the One FC belt, but like I said at this point in my career, I have to go where the money is. I have bills to pay, and have to put food on my table!”

JK: Do you have another fight booked?

Baroni: “Not sure what is next. I feel great. I’m in great shape. Old injuries, I don’t make excuses, everyone fights injured but I had some old injuries finally heal, and working at AKA i have learned more in the last six months than I have my entire career. I get to wrestle with Daniel Cormier all the time, I feel great. Feel like I could jump right into the NCAA’s and do great.

JK: What can Phil Baroni fans expect to see in your next fight?

Baroni: “You’re gonna see the same as the last fight. I’m gonna come out guns blazing, looking to finish in the first round. If you can get passed it, hats off to you. I used to train with the Team Quest guys a little (Matt Lindland, Dan Henderson) Like those guys and Randy Couture, I’m getting better as I get older. Physically I am just as strong as ever, and technically I’m faster. ”

JK: When you do decide to hang up the gloves, do you see yourself still part of the fight game in another capacity? Or will you do something else completely.

Baroni: “I love the game man, after fighting I’ll be involved somehow.”

Interview note: I would like to thank Mr Baroni for taking the time to speak with me. We will keep the post updated with any Phil Baroni Information and fight announcements. You can also follow “The New York Bad Ass” on twitter @philbaroni