Sports

Mixed Martial Arts: Clash of the Titans

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team-hitman-logo.jpgNo Mercy Extreme Fighting, in partnership with Rocky Mountain Bad Boyz, is bringing fighters together to bring extreme entertainment to southern Colorado. The Pueblo Convention Center will host the “Clash of the Titans II,” Friday at 7:30 p.m., as fighters from as far as Texas converge in the cage.

Tickets are available at Tickets West, King Soopers or at the door. General admission is $30 and reserved floor seating is $35 and $45.

Main Event #1

Manuel Gallardo (5-2) vs. Nick Buschman (4-4)

Gallardo, a 31-year-old, independent fighter, does not belong to a fight team. He’s coming off two straight losses, but said he’s feeling good about the upcoming fight and is ready to make a mark again.

Gallardo has done his homework on Buschman.

“He’s a warrior. Real tough. Aggressive,” Gallardo said about his opponent. “The fight could go either way. I’m looking forward to it.”

Gallardo has been fighting for three years, after going to a “Kick-Down” event in Denver. He has a background in wrestling, and said he prefers to fight the whole match on the ground.

This strategy seems to work for Gallardo. In his three years of fighting, he has won the Colorado International Sport Kickboxing Association title for 145 pounds and the Light Weight, and Super-Light Weight “Kick-Down” titles.

The majority of Buschman’s wins have come by knockout and most losses have come from submission. Expect Bushman to try to keep standing, rather than taking his chances on the ground with Gallardo. In January, he knocked a man out seven seconds into the first round.

Main Event #2

Shawn Ramsey (1-0) vs. Mike Aragon (0-2)

Ramsey, 26, fights on the Kongo-Do Fight Team, in Colorado Springs. His amateur record is 6-2.

His opponent, Aragon, has both a professional and amateur record that begs the question: what are they thinking?

Aragon fights for Freedom Fighters, but has no wins on his record, professional or amateur, sanctioned or not. He is 16-4 in kickboxing, though.

Chuck Dailey, 42, who puts together the fight cards and runs the Kongo-Do fight team, explained when Aragon approached him about retiring, he asked to face Ramsey again. He had lost the title at their last fight. They had won the “fight of the night” for being the most crowd pleasing fight.

Dailey denied that Aragon is not qualified to fight Ramsey, and assured that Aragon has a fight record to make the match worth watching.

“Really, Ramsey has nothing to gain, and everything to lose,” Dailey said.

Ramsey hopes to have a fight that is just as entertaining as the last fight, which lasted 1:31 into the third round.

“I already beat him once. I’m not going to go bulldog him,” Ramsey said. “We’re going to fight, but we’re going to give the people a good fight, one worth watching.”

The “Chick Fight”

Leslie Smith (1-0) vs. Anita Rodrigez (0-0)

Smith, 26, fights for Kongo-Do Fight Team, while Rodrigez is a debut fighter out of Texas.

Smith isn’t bothered that her opponent is not well-known.

“I think it’s great that there are more girls fighting,” she said.

Smith has only been training since December 2007, with her first fight in January. Since then, she said, she has been waiting for an opportunity to get back in the cage.

Smith said her inspiration comes from knowing she will only be fighting for a limited time.

She plans on ending her fighting career when she receives her degree, and moves on with her career. Until then, she works every day “…to reach my personal best, then to make it more than it was before.”

Smith considers herself to be an aggressive fighter who feels comfortable either on the ground or on her feet, but admitted she prefers to fight standing up. Her first fight ended when she knocked out her opponent 47 seconds into the second round.

While the Colorado Boxing Commission makes the rules and regulation for mixed martial arts, they have not yet published them. Keith Schmelzer, who owns Rocky Mountain Bad Boyz and runs Freedom Fighters, laid out the rules for the upcoming event.

  • A professional fight is three, 5-minute rounds
  • Amateur fights are three, 3-minute rounds
  • Fighters get a 1-minute rest between rounds
  • Fighters may use the forearm as a striking tool, but they may not use the point of the elbow
  • If one fighter is on the ground, the other may not kick at their fallen opponent’s head.

Other parts of the body are off limit from attack like the eyes, throat, groin and joints. While accidental strikes happen, most fighters are working hard to become the best through skill, not out of their ability to cripple their competition.

All statistics from fighters not interviewed taken from www.mixedmartialarts.com