Posts Tagged ‘Edmond Tarverdyan’

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By: Jonathan M King

Marquee Match Of The Week:

Kashakyan vs Archuleta

“For Present joys are more to flesh and blood than a dull prospect of distant good!” John Dryden

Finally fight day is upon us and although the main event features a two former big leaguers, it is the up and comers that are in support that have captured the eye of many. Both Alfred Khashakyan and Juan Archuleta have been well known names on the fight circuit for quite some time. Especially within their specific disciplines they have even become known as “specialists”. Archuleta has become one of the most feared grapplers in the division, while Khashakyan earns equal respect with regards to his stand up skills. So it seemed inevitable that these two would eventually find themselves locked in a cage together, but to have it happen in Studio City is truly a gift.

To call a fighter a prospect, is a dangerous thing. While the wins can inflate ego, the losses can crush your confidence.  I guess thats a term we as the media feel necessary to use. It makes us warm and fuzzy on the inside. But it takes a coach to recognize a true prospect from a fraudulent one, and it a takes a great coach to save a prospect from himself! Lucky for both of these fighters they have two coaches that genuinely care for them and their well being beyond just the cage.

Ranking the Prospect

“Its hard to say about ranking, I just think they are two really tough fighters with good records” Edmond Tarverdyan said. “Alfred is a monster he is a very powerful fighter, but he needs to keep stepping up in competition and that is what this fight is the next step.” Khashakyan survived a few tough rounds in his last fight to score a late come from behind knockout, a fight that exposed a few holes in his game.

Since then Alfred has been working relentlessly on his wrestling with 3 x Olympian Martin Berberyan, and on his jiujitsu with wizard Alberto Crane. Adding those arrows to the quiver can only solidify the arsenal Tarverdyan has already created. Put them all together and you should have a pretty well rounded frankenstein of a fighter who hits harder than guys 15 lbs heavier than him.

Meanwhile Somewhere in the desert….

Juan Archuleta is the type of guy that really doesn’t need to fight. He could pretty much do anything. And do it well. In fact, he is currently acting on the hit television show Kingdom on Direct TV. However like most people that is just his job, and his passion is something different. His passion is punching people in the face. Juan is a fighter.

Training under Joe Stevenson, Archuleta is what I would call a demon fighter. His goal is not to hurt you right away, (although he can if you get careless) his goal is to steal your soul over the course of 3 rounds. He does this by grinding you down methodically, not allowing you to breathe, taking you down relentlessly, and essentially dry-drowning you like an anaconda does. Its heartless to watch. You add in his granite like chin, and it makes the other guy want to take his ball and go home!

The best part about this fight is we get to see this happen on the regional scene. We rarely get to see two prospects this good fight each other on a stage this small. Because fighters feel they are risking too much, But what good are two distant prospects that never see each others eyes? A true test, is a test. Not a quiz you already have the answers for!

Tickets may still be available. go to www.valleyfightnight.com

 

 

 

 

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By Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Video By: Bob Fisher and Alex Linares

Manny Gamburyan burst on the scene as a contestant on the ultimate fighter early in the genesis of that reality incarnation. At first he was known for his grappling, being the cousin of Karo Parisyan, Gamburyan possessed a slick judo game but his striking was always an issue. However at only 5’5 inches tall, the vertically challenged Gamburyan was constantly at a size disadvantage, and usually ended up losing most of his power as he reached for his opponents. His punches landing past their peak power.

Still he was able to maintain a pretty good record, and eventually when the UFC began to take on the lighter weight classes, Gamburyan began to test the waters. At 145 lbs, Gamburyan made it all the way to the number 1 contender spot, earning a shot against WEC champion Jose Aldo, when he was ale to knock out divisional stalwart Mike Brown. Since that win Gamburyan has gone 2-4 with 1 no contest.

After Gamburyan lost a 3 round decision to Nick Lentz, dietician guru Mike Dolce joined him in the cage and told him it was time to try 135 lbs. Under Dolce’s guidance Gamburyan rearranged his training and diet in order to drop the weight. Gamburyan is now set to make his mark in a division that is full of young hungry lions frothing for a title shot. Gamburyan’s power and pure judo automatically make him a dangerous opponent for anyone in the division.

For “The Anvel”, the new division is not an excuse to just hang around. In his eyes, this is his last shot at making a legitimate run for a title. It doesn’t matter who or when, Gamburyan is ready. The question remains, is the division?

Manny Gamburyan trains at The Glendale Fighting Club under the watchful eye of head coach Edmond Tarverdyan. Make sure to tune in to the UFC 178 preliminary card to see Manny take on Cody Gibson.

 

Marina Shafir

Marina Shafir

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

All Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

The Past:

Pedigree can only carry you so far. God given ability without a champions work ethic may get you to the dance, but it certainly is not enough to ensure your tenure at the top. Becoming the best is one thing remaining there however, is a completely different animal. One only tamed by embracing the grind that accompanies everyday training. Champions live, they don’t simply exist. They are fueled by a different fire, cut from a different cloth. Sacrifice their only constant, and pain their only guarantee.

For Marina Shafir, that sacrifice began long ago. As a world class Judoka, Shafir cut her teeth competing against some of the best judo players in the game. Along the way becoming very close friends (“sweat sisters”), with UFC Champion Ronda Rousey. Together they trained to become the best, along the way forming a bond that would continue as Ronda transitioned from Judo to MMA.

“I have seen her transition from an athlete to a machine” Shafir said. “We used to eat peanut butter whole wheat bagels, because that was all we could afford. Now each meal is planned and only the finest fruits and ingredients! Its overwhelming to think about how much she has evolved to become this champion!” Shafir said.

The gulf between hype, and champion is wide. The chasm is filled with the crushed potential of pretenders who although once promising,dared to contend. Proper preparation is the only way across this divide. Still, there is no guarantee. Walking the tightrope of expectation can be a daunting task even for the most confident.

However for Shafir the motivation is simple. She fights for her brothers, she fights for her mother’s brutal honesty. She fights for the gym in Moldova her father opened to keep kids off the street. “I am my mom, I am my dad, I am made from them! I fight for them, for the last name they gave me. Not to make me something, but to make our name something.” Shafir said. 

In a world where prize fighters fight for, well…the prize, Shafir’s take offers a fresh breeze in a rather stale locker room full of hyperbole.

The Present:

The past is a majestic world filled with accomplishments, and stepping stones that have led to this moment. Unfortunately the present for Shafir is a cruel bitch named reality. Sure the reasoning is pure. Yes, her camp is sexy. But without the wins nobody cares. The great WWF manager Jimmy Hart was once asked why he dressed the way he did and he said, “The minute I dress like everyone else, I’ll have to sit with everyone else!”

And although not a wiry weasel with a megaphone, Shafir is not unlike Hart, at least for now. Until its her turn, she is perfectly content playing her part. As long as she is still on the players side of the fence. To stay there Shafir must simply do one thing, win!

Without the wins, the ends just won’t justify the means. Justification resumes August 10. On trial, will be Amanda Bell. At only 1-2 Bell would appear like fodder for the touted Shafir, however a close look at Bell’s amateur career reveals a glaring TKO win over Shafir’s teammate Jessamyn Duke. So, the plot thickens…well…a little anyway.Bell a well known grappler is a tough test for Shafir, however she is confident in all aspects of the game.

“If she wants to stand and bang, we can stand and bang. If she wants to grapple, well thats fine too we can grapple.” Shafir said. “I have been training very hard on my striking with Edmond Tarverdyan and would like to showcase it[my striking], but you have to see where the fight goes.”

Wise beyond her years, Shafir has a patience that allows her to enjoy the ride, without taking anything for granted. A ride she is extremely grateful to be on. “I really want to thank my coaches and training partners (Ronda Rousey, Shayna Baszler, Jessamyn Duke, and Jemyma Betrian), they all know who they are! My mom and dad, for making me, and George Bastmajyan for booking my fights.” Shafir said. “George goes out of his way for all the fighters, not just me. He is easy to fight for. I want to put on a good show for him!”

The Future:

Trusting in uncertainty is your best bet. At least it is when you are built fundamentally sound. Each building block serves as a stepping stone for the next. Each step rewarded with another waiting to be taken. The future is only a breathe away from the present, and moments from being in your past. Marina Shafir walks in some pretty big footprints, that carry high expectations. Unlike Rousey, Baszler and Duke, Shafir fights at 145 lbs. A weight class that doesn’t even exist in the UFC. However she believes its only a matter of time before it does. Maybe Shafir can serve as the defacto 145 lbs ambassador as Ronda did, to help usher in the new weight class. Maybe a stint in Invicta will be on the docket. Either way her patience and her surroundings never let the future blind her.

“I can never get lost in the shuffle, because of the people around me.” Shafir said. “You are the company you keep, and my company is pretty fucking cool!” Shafir said.

Wherever the future takes Marina Shafir, and whatever it holds for her, one can only make an educated guess. It may be here… It may be there.. However it will never be far from her past, and it will never be far from where she currently sits, whether on the brink or years past the break, Marina Shafir like her moniker claims, is a Supernova. The light from a distant burning star that can last long after the star itself fades.

It may not be set in stone, but it appears to be a ‘sure thing’, that in the sport of MMA Marina Shafir’s legacy will burn on, long after she is gone.

 

 

Marina Shafir trains at Glendale Fighting Club and is Sponsored by: Virus, Cucuone, Core Power

You can follow Marina Shafir on Social Media Here: Twitter, Facebook

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