Posts Tagged ‘Up and Comers Unlimited XIV’

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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 for the UPC UNLIMITED Promotion, and will also be featured on there June card at the Agua Caliente Casino.

By Jonathan King

Up and Comers Unlimited XIV at Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa in Palm Springs California provided an extremely entertaining night of fights. Amateur fighters began the night, throwing with reckless abandon. All of these fighters made the most with the opportunity of fighting in a pretty large arena, and in front of a packed crowd.

With a total of 6 professional and 5 amateur fights, promoter Jason Weiner worked feverishly to produce an exciting fight card, even as the event was under way. In a very strange twist, Co Headline fighter Anthony Shifflet (0-2 MMA) disappeared after having his hands wrapped. Leaving Dethrone Base Camp prospect Chris Honeycutt without a fight. Honeycutt, who has been featured on NuvoTV’s “Fight Factory” had several family members fly in for his debut, including his father from China.

Weiner made the Honeycutt family’s trip worth while, finding a local fighter Jessy Torres (who was sitting at home when he got the call) to step in for the absentee fighter. His fighting spirit, enabled the co main event to go on as scheduled  However he ran into the juggernaut that is Chris Honeycutt.

Honeycutt was able to secure an early take-down  and transition to Torres’s back. Once he was able to flatten out Torres, Honeycutt began raining punches from the back mount forcing the stoppage. The crowd reacted with boos, as they thought the stoppage was early. However replay shows Torres was not defending himself.

Steve Swanson (brother of UFC fighter Cub Swanson) added to his reputation for finishing fights quickly, defeating Eric McMorris in just :17 seconds. Swanson immediately landed a chopping leg kick to McMorris’s knee, leaving the young fighter unable to stand. Swanson swarmed with punches that seemed academic as the referee stopped the fight.

Swasnon has now won his last three bouts in less than :45 seconds. At 10-0, Swanson seems destined to join his talented brother in the UFC. His power and speed will translate well in the UFC 125 lbs division.

Thoughts on UPC Up and Comers XIV: Jason Werner has created an incredible promotion that blends together a talent pool of young, hungry amateurs with seasoned professionals creating an intoxicating cocktail of fights for both the casual and the hardcore fight fan. Not many fighters ever get to fight in the UFC, but the UPC offers a great chance for those who are trying too, to showcase their skills on a large stage. A great night of fights!

Pictures By: John Walsh