Posts Tagged ‘OC Fight Club’

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By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Since Scott Coker has taken over Bellator MMA has survived a lame-duck transitional period of uncertainty only to emerge in a more tenable situation than ever before. The new regime has not only updated the drab promotional image by polishing the broadcast with elaborate entrances, but they have also updated an antiquated roster as well. Coker and has team have signed a diverse group of veteran fighters with name recognition to go along with some of the sports top prospects. The move ensures the future, while staying current with relevant big name fighters headlining televised events.

Two of those prospects are Michael Page (7-0 MMA 3-0 Bellator MMA) and Curtis Millender (7-0 MMA Bellator MMA Debut) who are set to square off in January as part of the promotions series of fights titled ‘The British Invasion’. Page has been highly touted as one of the best young fighters in the welterweight division, while Millender has remained under the radar for the most part. A trend the man they call ‘Courteous Curtis’ plans to reverse with an explosive debut.

In Page, Millender finds his toughest opponent too date. Essentially he will be fighting his mirror image. Both fighters are exactly the same size, at 6’3 they tower over the rest of the division, and both are known for their electric striking. However if the fight were to find its way to the ground, Millender would be comfortable as well. “Let’s just say I am more than comfortable on the ground, and if it does end up there, he is in trouble!”, Millender said.

The fight will be Millender’s first bout outside of the confines of ‘The OC Fight Club Hangar’, a place he has called home for all of his 7 professional fights. A trend that is a direct result of his ability. Once promoter Roy Englebrecht and manager Mel Valenzuela saw ‘Curtious’ in action they knew they had discovered a gem. They locked him up to a contract and then they realized Millender’s main problem. No one wanted to fight him!

Much like Pat Cummins who also trains at Reign MMA, Millender presents a nightmare for most fighters to match up against. His reach and striking prowess make him almost impossible to hit, and even harder to avoid! With opponents heading for the hills, Englebrecht and Valenzuela had to fly in opponents with well known pedigrees to test Millender. The only problem was, he walked through them too!

So now here we are set to witness two of the sports best young welterweights fight each other in the Bellator MMA cage. Even though Millender predicts a victory, he realizes he may see Page again, as this may be an emerging rivalry. “I wouldn’t be surprised if I have to beat him again!”, Millender said. However he doesn’t see a need for a third! “We are both young and I could see myself having to beat him again, but I don’t think a third time will be necessary!”

The problem facing a prospect is that at some point he has to shed that moniker in order to take on that of a contender. For Millender this journey started long ago. The countless hours of preparation are starting to pay off. However the hard work is just beginning. Although Bellator MMA currently only has 23 current welterweights on the roster, the depth of talent makes it one of the toughest divisions in the promotion. With current champion Douglas Lima scheduled to fight British slugger Paul ‘Semtex’ Daley, the winner of this bout could find himself on a short list of contenders for the 170 lbs title.

Curtis Millender (7-0 MMA) is signed to Bellator MMA and  is represented by Mel Valenzuela. Millender would like to thank his family, and friends, and coaches for supporting his career, but especially wants to thank anyone who “ever gave [him] a ride to the gym”. He would also like to personally recognize Roy Englebrecht and his manager Mel for supporting his efforts.

Curtis Millender is currently sponsored by: Everlast,  Via Diamond Termite, Nu Image Marketing, Kolor Splash of Anaheim, and JP 23 BBQ , and Grand Casino Bakery of Culver City.

Millender trains out of UFC Gym Fullerton and Reign Training Center

REAL COmbat Meda’s Jonathan King with UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz at OC Fight Club, Costa Mesa California

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Making a name for yourself in the world of mixed martial arts was much easier during the infancy stages of the sport. Today very talented fighters are left struggling for an opportunity to showcase their skills. At the amateur level, fighters give their all just for a chance to become a professional. Most never make it past the amateur ranks. The very few who do, face extremely difficult odds. In the business of fighting, your foundation is the key to your success.

Roy Englebrecht and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, and UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz are providing that strong foundation for several young fighters in the southern California area. Fight Club MMA is a burgeoning promotion that is full of young professional talent in both Boxing and MMA. They also provide an amateur showcase that gives young fighters the opportunity to compete in an a extremely professional environment.

Set up in an old hangar, this amateur showcase has the look and feel of a professional fight. Awaiting the fighters is a packed house of friends, family members and MMA fans in general. The competition is raw, aggressive at times sloppy, but never boring. As the fighters enter the ring, to catered music, the look and feel of the event surpasses some of the larger professional shows. The motivation is evident with Tito Ortiz looking on, these young martial artists are looking to impress.

The full fight card of 10 bouts featured fighters at several different weight classes. who specialized in several different aspects of the sport. For the most part striking was on display, with several exciting exchanges that had the crowd a buzz. The amateur status of some of the participants was evident, however most of the young fighters appeared to be well trained and in excellent condition.

This is an amazing promotion. The fights are exciting, and the showcase is extremely ‘fighter friendly’ with each fighter receiving an equal push and opportunity to perform under the lights. The OC Fight Club is a great place to separate the gym rats from the prospects.

MMA as a sport has seen the talent pool explode over the years. The days of ‘one trick pony’ champions are over. In order to succeed at the highest level, fighters have to be well versed in all aspects of the sport, not just one. The amateur division is where these skills become honed, and polished. Roy Engelbrecht and Tito Ortiz have provided the opportunity for young fighters to display those skills, on a very grand scale. With promoters like Roy and Tito, the future is looking pretty bright for the future stars of MMA.