Thursday, September 29, 2011

Making a pass

One of the best things about mixed martial arts is that the sport itself is constantly evolving. There is almost always something new you can learn if you train in the sport. Complacency should be and probably is a foreign language to those training in MMA.

A particular form of MMA that requires a great deal of teaching and thinking is Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Danny Ives of Ivey League MMA in Annapolis, an affiliate of Team Lloyd Irvin in Camp Springs, held a seminar earlier this month at a MMA school in Pennsylvania.

Ives used the seminar to teach a type of guard pass in BJJ, one of what I'm sure is hundreds, if not thousands, of those types of moves in BJJ. Many people refer to BJJ as a game of human chess, which I think is pretty apropos. You have to constantly guess what your opponent is going to do then figure out how to counteract it before they actually do it.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Representing the DMV

Normally I loathe nicknames that describe certain regions of the country, i.e. the "DMV", which refers to D.C., Maryland and Virginia. But local events featuring Maryland fighters is not limited solely to UFC's upcoming live event on Oct. 1 in D.C. and Shogun Fights V in Baltimore on Oct. 8. Other events, both locally and nationally, feature fighters who train and compete here in the Free State.

The first event was Stellar Fights V in Delaware, which took place earlier this month and featured several fighters from Practical MMA in Dundalk. A pair of fighters in particular managed to land "Knockout of the Night" and "Submission of the Night" honors at the event and the card also featured fighters from Method MMA in Forest Hill, according to the link posted above. Judging by the posted photos that accompany the article, those fighters brought their A-game and weren't kidding around.

Another event that takes this weekend is Bellator Fighting Championships, a distant third competitor to the UFC and Strikeforce. Brian Van Hoven, a Virginia fighter who has competed at previous Maryland events is scheduled to compete in Bellator's tournament format in the lightweight division. I saw Van Hoven compete at an event in Pikesville last year and while I can't remember off the top of my head if he won or lost his bout, I do remember coming away impressed with his effort and that he made quite an impression on my friend who accompanied me to the event. The first link I posted at the onset of this paragraph notes that Van Hoven is a member of the U.S. Marines and based on my very basic familiarity with the Marines, the word "quit" is nowhere near their dictionary.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Upcoming attractions

With the calendar turning to September and events such as football beginning to take full swing, the schedule is also becoming more packed in mixed martial arts, both on the national and local level.

The UFC has put all their chips in the center of the table for its network television debut Nov. 12 with having a UFC Heavyweight Title fight between Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos. The UFC is also getting ready for its debut in Washington, D.C. next month, right next door to Maryland.

Shogun Fights, the premier MMA organization in Maryland is also getting ready for its fifth card Oct. 8 in Baltimore. Several of the usual suspects who have competed on previous cards will also be featured at this event, including names such as including Dave Daniecki, Ryan Mackin, Binky Jones and Ryan McGowan, who all train out of Team Ground Control in Baltimore.

Another Team Ground Control member who will compete at Shogun Fights V is Dan Root, who won his first Shogun Fights in impressive fashion with a first-round submission. Word of Root's appearance has already gotten around.

Other Maryland fighters will compete at Shogun Fights V, including Jason "J-Mo" Morris from Evolve Academy in Gaithersburg and Cole Presley from Clinch Academy in Frederick.