Canadian Rumour Mill – June 5

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Amateur MMA in Ontario sure got off to a poor start last weekend. Seems like it’s not the way you’d want to debut Amateur MMA. Check out Showdown Joe’s thoughts on the event HERE.

  • Rick Hawn almost missed out on fighting (and winning) the Bellator LW tournament final. He got injured while training at Tristar for his Bellator tournament final fight and didn’t heal up until a week or two out from the fight. Tough guy!
  • John Makdessi is taking a few months off to reboot his training and strengthen his overall game. Expect to see him again in the fall.
  • It seems like Vernon has decided to stop holding MMA events until the provincial board is set up.
  • BFL’s next show will be July 28th in beautiful Penticton, BC.
  • SFS in Winnipeg in September. Winnipeg needs some MMA!
  • Own3d, an MMA themed movie will begin shooting in Ontario in July, starring a former UFC champ, a former title contender, and a current number one contender. Look for the MMA stars to be wandering around in Cobourg and Port Hope, ON.
  • Canadian MMA “It Girl” Erin McDougall picked up her 2nd amateur win on Saturday with a quick TKO victory over Stacey Vega at Jackson’s MMA Series 8 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  That brings McDoogs’ record to 2-1, if I am counting right.
  • Roger Hollett was announced to face Attila Vegh on the Bellator Summer Series Light-Heavyweight tournament (see HERE).  Now, it appears that Zelg Galesic will face Vegh and Hollett is not in the tourney at all.

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NOTE: These are just rumors and opinions of the Gossip Queen. If you have a rumour that you want to contribute, email: gossipqueen@topmmanews.com.

72 Responses to “ Canadian Rumour Mill – June 5 ”

  1. Wuzjustsayin says:

    Great Article by Showdown!

    It proves my pervious points of what relying on our Government Bureaucrats can do to the “Health and Safety” of MMA in Canada!

    In the article Showdown Joes states “We worked tirelessly with a government ministry, agency, department and representative, but in July 2010 we were unceremoniously removed from the process in favour of a new group, one that seemingly didn’t have the same interests in mind as we did.”

    I am TIRED of hearing bullshit from people that don’t know WTF they are talking about, who are just regurgitating talking points that sound good, push buttons, but in the end, really don’t mean much.

    If you really care about the sport, this offer from IMMAF is what you need to do something about it! It was posted in the comment section or the article.

    “Anyone interested in the IMMAF can go to their website, and we are now taking applications from groups in Ontario to become the CAMMAF representative for that province;; cont John Williams, metis 98@hotmail.com

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  2. Robin Black says:

    I have tons of respect for Showdown and always fnd him to be honest and passionate.
    Him giving full disclosure that he CASK ended up “with” amateur MMA instead of his and Terry Riggs’ group shows his honesty.

    Showdown is speaking from the heart in this article and I respect that.

    ***************

    Some additional thoughts:

    On two main Showdown Joe points, we will have a very very hard time finding any educated MMA people who disagree with him.

    – standing 8 count in MMA

    99% of MMA people, including myself, think this is terrible and hope it can get changed going forward and

    – the rules do a poor job of preparing an amateur athlete for, and directing them towards, pro MMA

    I agree. Currently, it feels a lot like sport Jiu-Jitsu and very little like MMA. Unlike Joe, however, I feel it to be due to necessity and understand it will evolve.

    These two points will be raised time and again by MMA people. We will not be able to get away from these points, and I personally agree with them. They must change over time.

    Some of the reasons that CASK has the support of a growing legion of MMA people and will continued to be supported by myself and a number of others:

    – while CASK is short on real MMA knowledge and experience (and was missing key MMA experts and experienced people during the rules development), CASK has a fantastic track record with amateur combat sports. CASK has people who understand process, development and government dealings

    – many experienced MMA people who support CASK understand how government process works, and understand that some of the rules structure exists because it is a starting point that was influenced more by safety experts, doctors, brain specialists etc rather than MMA people, and that some of the rules structure reflects a “this is as far as we can go at this time” sensibility; those of us who prioritize safety-first understand and support that; at the same time, the MMA community hopes rules structure will “quickly” evolve to reflect “real” MMA

    – in our experience CASK puts safety first

    – CASK has taken the important and challenging first step, and should be commended and supported and assisted rather than criticized (no offense to Joe)

    – CASK’s track record shows the ability to learn and evolve on the fly

    – with the unsafe and bottom drawer “quality” of amateur MMA elsewhere in Canada (when developed by people with much higher understanding and expertise of MMA, but infinitely lower understanding of safety and process and development), CASK’s approach is refreshing and shows promise for safety, quality, and long term viability and needs to be supported

    – there’s more but you can see the positives here and the basic reasons for support

    **********

    Like I said, I respect Joe and respect his points. From Showdown Fightwear to his radio show to his involvement as a promoter and sponsor, Joe has been a grassroots pioneer in Canada longer than 99% of the rest of us.

    I appreciate CASK, appreciate that the rules and structure they could accomplish at this stage is imperfect, and choose to see if I can contribute to its improvement and evolution.

    I have no vested interest, no stake, and feel this way from my own research and education.

    Again, got lotsa love for Joe and his passion, and know that he always acts for the best for the sport.

    Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  3. Wuzjustsayin says:

    So how do you feel about IMMAF?

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  4. Robin Black says:

    Still educating myself on it but the first thing I want to know is who “owns” it (ie when the company makes a profit, who buys a house with it?).

    Sounds good on paper but there’s nothing there (“The purpose of IMMAF is to further the development and recognition of the sport of mixed martial arts, enabling international competition through the organization of national MMA federations around the world” etc) that couldn’t have been written by any partially educated MMA fan seeking to create such an organization.

    The big questions about businesses like these are motivation. Who gets paid? What’s in it for them? How educated are they really? Who polices them?

    Also, there’s questions about the reality of it.
    Do you really ever see a situation where government legislators and just regular parents will be comfortable with some unrecognized Swedish organization protecting Canadian kids?

    Will do my due diligence and do some research tho.

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  5. Wuzjustsayin says:

    Please let us know your results.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  6. Robin Black says:

    Will do gimme a few days.

    Man, amateur MMA is sure a hot button now. From unsanctioned and unregulated fights between barely trained or untrained individuals in Saskatchewan to a heavily regulated completely sanctioned new amateur PSO in Ontario, there’s a lot goin on.

    With real professional work (for me managing Nick, tv, analysis, calling fights) and training and regular life, it sure is tough to try to contribute to the amateur system.

    I guess that is a problem for everyone.

    Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  7. Wuzjustsayin says:

    You’re a busy man Robin!

    Got to respect the effort you put in.

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. Robin Black says:

    Thanks man kind of you to say.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  9. Donald Duck says:

    Dr. John Williams? The same guy who perpetuated a fraud on MMA with his fixed match?

    I’m suppose to believe a guy who has done public damage to the sport has the best interests in mind for Canadian MMA?

    Wuzjustsayin, I’m hoping you just didn’t put a little time into researching this McDojo fraud. I’m really hoping you just didn’t realize who he was. Cause if you knew who he was and still recommended him then said you have just tanked any credibility I may have been willing to give you.

    Donnie

    PS – Looks like the video for this travesity has been taken down but a quick search will get you what you need to know… http://www.mmafighting.com/2010/07/29/70-year-old-mma-fighter-john-williams-got-in-the-cage-to-feel-al

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  10. Wuzjustsayin says:

    Donnie are you talking about denying a 70 year old man one last chance to participate in something he loves a “perpetuated fraud on MMA”.

    In his own words in the article “If people don’t remember you, then you’re just a little checkmark in a cemetery somewhere. This is kind of my shot at immortality, I guess. They’ll always talk about the 70-year-old who got in there and fought.”

    I really don’t think this was a travesty.

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  11. Wuzjustsayin says:

    Are you sure this is even the same person?

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  12. Donald Duck says:

    Same guy and (again benefit of the doubt) I’ll assume you haven’t seen the so called ‘fight’. Shannon vs Severn was a higher quality work that what Gumshoe Williams put on at Elite1.

    Williams and his son (I think) were chased off of here to fast after that fight card was aired that I think he was renamed “Swift Wolf”.

    Donnie

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  13. Hollett fan says:

    I heard bout Hollett a bit ago… didnt he have an irregularity in his heart test or somethin?

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  14. McDooogs says:

    Thank you!!!! :) Being on the Jackson card was rad. Great experience.

    Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  15. I understand you are busy Robin. Even at Top MMA News we do a poor job of covering amateur MMA as there is so much of it across Canada and there is not as much interest in it by our readers. I am definitely no expert when it comes to amateur mma.

    I have not seen any amateur MMA live, but I would suggest that few, if any, other shows in Canada would allow competitors to execute double leg takedowns on cement or give 8 counts to a fighter who remained knocked out for 20 seconds and not rush medics in to provide aid instead.

    There is a ton of regulated amateur MMA in Canada – BFL under Bill Mahood’s BCMMA, Hard Knocks under Calgary’s Commission, Saturday Night Fights and Alpha Fight under the SKMMA, Hybrid under the Regie, and Extreme Cage Rage under the Moncton commission. AFC, Unified, and Rumble on the Rez had ammy on their undercards as well.

    I don’t think any of the above would risk their fighters like CASK did according to Showdown’s report. Its sounds like a very bad first crack at amateur MMA.

    Based on this report, it sounds like CASK needs to go back to the drawing board and replace those safety experts.

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  16. Robin Black says:

    I spoke to the CASK people.

    Obviously they are disappointed with Joe’s report.

    Apparently after the government informed Showdown and his partners that they did not meet the government regulations, CASK invited Joe and his partners to be a part of the development process.

    They felt that Showdown’s report was filled with untrue reports on an injury-free and successful day. They are very upset that he would write something that is untrue.

    I was not there so I can’t comment.

    I know Joe to be a good ambassador and good dude.
    He has always tried to put the sport first.

    I also know the CASK people to be experts in safety who spent tens of thousands of man hours in development.

    The good thing coming of all this amateur MMA talk lately, Joe’s comments on AMMA in Ontario and a number of people’s comments about unregulated shows in Saskatchewan and that death in an unregulated show in SD, is that we are taking a good hard look at this issue.

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  17. Bdc says:

    @ kg i swear you must have been a diff show than me, prestige fc in fort mac had amature fights on it and you were there…

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  18. Say What? says:

    Having Terry Riggs involved in any group will not help your cause by any means. I know more educated people are needed to create a strong organization, but some of these current people are very biased and clueless when it comes to mma, regardless of there previous involvement. Showdown joe has jumped on and off more bandwagons, he has a permanent brown streak on his face. If its the flavor of the month, joe is there, but only as long as it keeps his interest and brings exposure to him

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  19. Robin Black says:

    I disagree. Joe has been around doing a lot for this sport for a long long time.

    Joe has the sport’s best interests in mind.

    I may be supportive of what CASK is doing while Joe is not right now, but the longer I know Joe to be a tireless proponent of the sport.

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  20. Showdown Joe says:

    Ummm….

    “Apparently after the government informed Showdown and his partners that they did not meet the government regulations, CASK invited Joe and his partners to be a part of the development process.”

    That’s like saying “The UFC’s first event was in 1993; and the rest his history”.

    My personal issues, and that of my group’s has long been filed away as a learning experience, not in government processes’, which we TRIED SO HARD to follow and adhere to, but more of a case of “should have saw the writing on the wall”. Not after the first meeting with them, but the second one on July 17th, 2010, in Burlington, Ontario.

    Robin (et al) – when folks stop returning NUMEROUS phone calls, emails, and/or any type of contact with you, after how many attempts do you realize “wait a second…we just got ????”.

    Ask C.A.S.K. about my follow up email attempts on July 26th, 2010, August 04th, 2010 and August 11th, 2010. Ask about the messages left on their voice mails on the same dates.

    Ask C.A.S.K. what some of their own members told me, about their plans for me (or lack thereof).

    As I said, I stopped pursuing, as I figured out what happened. So I let them do their thing. Our work from 2001 to 2010 was taken over by them, and it is not what I saw this past weekend.

    It matters not what group oversees Amateur MMA in Ontario – what matters to me, is that it’s done correctly. I was and am still, in constant dialog about AMMA with UFC Executives here in Canada, and south of the border. I also work closely with Big John McCarthy, who helped put together C.A.M.O., the body who oversees Amateur MMA in California.

    You tell me, which option the government should have considered? :)

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  21. Showdown Joe says:

    “Showdown joe has jumped on and off more bandwagons, he has a permanent brown streak on his face. If its the flavor of the month, joe is there, but only as long as it keeps his interest and brings exposure to him”

    Feel free to expand. And your real name would be nice as well.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

  22. Robin Black says:

    Joe we both want the same things.

    I was just passing on what the CASK people told me in an attempt to be fair and balanced (ish).

    I’ll call ya later my man and we can compare notes and see if we get on a similar page.

    If not, like I said, I’m behind you, your track record for over a decade, and your freedom to express yourself and point out things that you think are dangerous and wrong for the sport.

    If you see something that, in your educated opinion, is bad for the sport I urge you to talk about it.

    I do that from time to time- I’ve done it with some dangerous promoters in Ontario and a certain show in Belleville, I’m doing it about unsanctioned shows in Saskatchewan, and I’ll continue to do it when I see something dangerous for the sport we love.

    I believe if we try we can assist CASK in improving.

    But you won’t find anyone who will support your right to publicly make your points more than I will. I support your candor and openness wholeheartedly.

    Respect.

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  23. Showdown Joe says:

    FYI – here’s a video showing some bouts: the first portion there is a tapout, and the ref barely does anything. Is the fighter telling him that his opponent tapped?

    The second portion shows a bout where a tapout does not end the fight, it ends the round. They restart for round two…and another tapout…and so on, and so forth.

    But of course, my reporting has upset C.A.S.K. – here’s video evidence…and I have more on the way :)

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  24. Donald Duck says:

    Did you know that Donnie has a pair of Showdown Fight Wear boxing gloves?

    If, and I mean a big ole massive Patches IF, Joe has wagon jumped then I don’t know what to call what the rest of the community has be doing all this time.

    Donnie

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  25. @BDC…

    Thumb’s up on your comment. I have seen live amateur MMA on the Prestige cards in Fort Mac.

    Update: I also went to a UMC event in Saskatchewan in 2009.

    I’m old. I forget things.

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  26. Shar 1 says:

    Go McDoogs! Go!!!

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  27. Bring the Pain says:

    I have a showdown Fightwear T-shirt…Anatomy of Victory….

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  28. Donald Duck says:

    I think the gloves make me more ‘old skool’…

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  29. BJ Penn said ‘yes’ to Rory MacDonald’s challenge.

    http://www.mmaweekly.com/b-j-penn-accepts-rory-macdonalds-challenge

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  30. Wuzjustsayin says:

    Wow!

    Would of never guessed this fight would come together.

    Too bad for BJ!

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  31. Jeff harrison says:

    I had fighters Compete last weekend. It was well run well organized and safety was a priority. A great experience under a great set of rules that suited our 15-18year old athletes , who I would never dream of putting into a cage or ring to be ground and pounded at that developmental stage of their career. After 2-3 years of amateur experience these teenagers will be men and women and turning to a pro set of rules will be a natural progression. I completely trust the krus, champions, and bjj blackbelts that designed the set of rules. When you factor in the expertise of these martial artists that dedicated their time and effort into providing a rules and regulations model that would be deemed safe by the Ontario government, and combine this with the insurance policy and safety record of CASK… It is a no brainer for me to send kids to compete and continue to help the amateur sport grow.

    Well-loved! Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  32. Amanda Domenichetti says:

    I posted this on Sportsnet.ca and wanted to share my views here as well :

    I’d like to start off by stating that I have never met Showdown Joe, and I have been working as an official with CASK since its development. Many may say that my view is going to be skewed, or bias. My goal is simply to relay what I know of the AMMA situation in Ontario and bring further information to light.

    Full contact and combative sport has had a very difficult past in Ontario. Up until a few years ago, I was officiating full contact events in the US due to the legalities this side of the boarder. Amateur Kickboxing, Low Kick, and K1 disciplines all had to modify rules and regulations in order to gain reasonable insurance and government sanctioning. This is also what has happened with Amateur MMA (AMMA).

    Showdown Joe states:
    “The goal (in my personal opinion) is to foster the development of athletes, in a safe and progressive manner, so one day they may evolve into professional mixed martial artists. I am steadfast in my belief that there should be three levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced, all of which require the wearing various pieces of equipment — more coverage at the beginner level, and subsequently less at the advanced.
    The Unified Rules of MMA should be modified and tapered down for beginners, and as the athletes progress up the system, they eventually get closer to competing under the true Unified Rules. Age, weight and experience will have merit in also determining where an athlete fits in the system, and as they garner more experience, or in the case of a teenager reaching adulthood, they will be more than ready to enter the pro ranks. They can then take this amateur experience and hopefully excel at the pro level, with the ultimate goal of reaching the big show”
    The current rules of AMMA do exactly that. There are two different levels, ring and tatami, which involve competitors divided by weight, age, experience, levels of contact and equipment requirements. It seems to me that these differ from what Showdown feels they should be. That does NOT make the current rules wrong. The highest priority of CASK has always been the protection of our amateur athletes. Including rules like the standing 8 count ensure that these young athletes are healthy enough to make it to the pros!
    Showdown also states

    “We were constantly and consistently beat down by the government, forced to jump through hoops, cut through red tape, only to repeat the process every 3-6 months. These guys obviously got carte blanche.”

    I would say that the simple facts are the following: CASK has an incredible wealth of knowledge behind it. This includes medical teams, those who understand and can navigate government policy, those able to write policy documents, those who can write rules and regulations documents and can conduct certification courses based on said documents, and those who can provide the necessary requirements insurance companies demand. To go along with this knowledge are dedicated experts in all fields of combative sport, who volunteer and give enormous amounts of their time. CASK and those involved in the development of AMMA in Ontario did not get carte blanche; they succeeded in developing a program that the Government and Insurance companies would support. Other organizations did not meet these requirements and therefore failed.
    AMMA has now had its first event. The rules which we are currently following are in the very earliest stages of development. As there are more events, and more SAFE outcomes, the rules will evolve. However, without a starting off point AMMA would still not be sanctioned in Ontario. The sport had to be modified from what we know traditional MMA to be in order to be allowed in this province. We have seen the same developments in K1.
    I was present at the event in Toronto on Saturday. In speaking with competitors, coaches and the spectators I heard both positive and negative comments. I was most pleased to speak with several young gentlemen in crowd who thought that the event was fantastic, and they were upset that they were not able to come back for the evening event. They stated this after a ten minute conversation regarding the rules and the process it took to get AMMA to this beginning stage. I was witness to the bout Showdown Joe wrote about which two “concerned (and bitter) coaches” had called him. I will fully back the call of the center referee based on my knowledge of the current AMMA rules and what I witnessed. However, being a certified official for semi-contact, light contact, full contact, low kick, K1 and AMMA, as well as being a former world champion with many bouts behind me, I can say that in any event there are incorrect calls made, there are calls made which athletes and coaches disagree with, and there are calls made that have prevented unnecessary injury. This is the nature of all sports! All that we, as officials, can do is to give our best performance and train in our role just as the competitors train in theirs.
    I was not present on Sunday and cannot comment on any bouts or events on that day.
    In conclusion I would like to say that the goal of CASK has, and will always be, to promote Amateur Combative Sports in Canada while mitigating risk to those athletes participating. Having been involved with this organization and its leadership for more than twelve years, both as an athlete and competitor, I can say that this is not an organization that rules with fear. All of our rules and regulations are developed with the feedback from our member clubs. Without the continued support of these clubs CASK would not exist. If you do not agree with the direction that AMMA is moving in Ontario I would urge you to get involved! Become educated in the current rules and regulations. Learn what it takes to run a PSO, and get government approval and insurance.

    I do what I do for the love of the sport and the continued development of amateur athletes in this country. The root of all Martial Arts is respect and dedication. I respect the right of all individuals to voice their opinions and I can only hope that Showdown Joe realizes our end goals are the same; the safe development of Amateur MMA athletes in this province.

    Amanda Domenichetti
    Chief Official, CASK
    Director of Officials, Kickboxing Ontario

    Well-loved! Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

  33. Jeff harrison says:

    http://www.thestar.com/iphone/sports/mma/article/1205236–mixed-martial-arts-for-kids-packs-punch-while-avoiding-knockouts

    There is an article about my 15 year old student in the largest newspaper in Canada the toronto star. This kid is amazing and performed like a champion !! THAT is what the weekend was about.:) It is great he can compete safely in a sport he loves, but at a level made to suit his physical and technical abilities, as well as his understanding of the game. Cheers.

    Well-loved! Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  34. Barry Ogg says:

    I have been a CASK club member since 2005 and am also on the CASK Goverance Board. I created the PSO for Kickboxing for my province and I have promoted events with Amateur and Pro athletes. I have known Muzammal Nawaz, CASK President, since 2005 and I know he has seen the best and worst of Pro Kickboxing in his lengthy career. When he created CASK he used his vast knowledge of how to deal with Gov’t and Insurance companies. Yes, he was frustrated many times having to take baby steps to reach his ultimate goals but he perservered with the big picture clearly in mind. CASK has given thousands of Canadian Amateur athletes National and International opportunities to compete and excel in sport. Their record is impeccable. For this reason, the Gov’t considered CASK the best choice to lead AMMA. The same frustrations and baby steps start again for AMMA. The same perserverence is needed again. Muzammal has surrounded himself with experts in MMA, medical safety etc etc to create a starting point.
    It’s soooo easy to be critical but Joe’s report, whether intended or not, came across as sour grapes resulting from his failed attempt to “run the show” Had he been successful in his attempt to run AMMA he would have been under the same restrictions and baby step process that CASK had with Kickboxing and has now with AMMA. How would he have handled the critics? Would he have preferred the critics applauded his efforts, understood the process he was forced to work under and offered to come on board to offer their suggestions to help build the sport? I expect so.

    Respectfully,

    Barry Ogg
    Kickboxing PEI

    Well-loved! Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  35. Tyler Mc says:

    weighing in on the “unregulated MMA in Saskatchewan with poorly trained fighters” I have attended the last two cards hard knocks has put on in Estevan Saskatchewan and have no concerns with how the fights were carried out and the quality of the officials and organization of the event. Robin and Showdown you may want to check with Jesse Bongfeldt to get his two cents as he had about a half dozen fighters on the card. The big beef I have is people beating up the poorly trained fighters arguement. The reason these cards have got much press at all is there’s been crowds of 2000 people coming out to watch amateur MMA because they are fans of the sport. Had these events attracted typical amateur MMA crowds they wouldn’t be on anyone’s radar period. As for the fighters I can’t cooment on the out of town guys but the majority from Estevan have trained MMA for 3+ years including some trips to vegas to train with pro’s and deserve a little more respect from the readers on this forum as every MMA fighter has to start somewhere.

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  36. Robin Black says:

    Cord Crowther, involved with the promotion, indicated to me that, yes, they have fighters with “3 months experience or so fighting guys with similar experience”.

    In my opinion that isn’t even an amateur fighter yet. That’s, imo, an untrained kid starting a hobby.

    No one cares how many of these fighters’ friends and families buy tickets. I have no interest in the finances, and am not involved in the promoting business in any way.

    People care about fighter safety for the individuals and for the sport as a whole.

    If some kid with “3 months training” or so is killed in a show that does not have an sanctioning body or impartial 3rd party policing safety, everyone involved in this sport will be hurt.
    Someone’s son dies because a company believed, incorrectly, that they were doing enough to ensure safety.

    And the sport is damaged irreversibly.

    I’m really glad people in Estevan like the sport.
    I’m trying to make sure we all get to continue enjoying it.

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  37. Robin Black says:

    “the majority from Estevan have trained MMA for 3+ years”

    That’s great. I look forward to calling their fights when they are pros.

    Its the minority we’re worried about. Its that kid who tells the promoter he’s been trainng MMA for 5 years, when really he trained 8 times at a TKD school 5 years ago. When that kid gets put up against one of that better trained majority you talked about.

    When a promotion polices itself in a province like Saskatchewan with no sanctioning and no impartial protection for athletes, and this kind of thing is going on, all the best intentions in the world won’t stop the inevitable bad outcome.

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  38. Robin Black says:

    A part of the Hard Knocks business plan is the belief that competitive MMA is for everyone, not just for people with years of training.

    I may not agree with that thinking as I think when untrained kids fight its dangerous and waters down the sport but it is beyond my pay scale to think its my business to tell someone how to run their business.

    When they do that in Calgary there are people in place to police them. Not my business.

    But in Saskatchewan there is no one to police them, and no commission or impartial protector to ensure safety.

    That’s when idiots in the media (like me) come in.

    I care about young fighters’ safety and I care about the health of the sport.

    I am not a lawyer so I can’t do anything about that.
    I am not a coach in Western Canada so I can’t complain to the promotion or tell my fighters not to fight there.
    I am not a government official or a cop.

    If I care, all I can do is try to use media in 2012 (tv, radio, web, facebook and twitter, message boards on websites like these are all modern media) to try to put out some thought-provoking information about safety in Saskatchewan.

    I don’t really have the time, and it is tiring and sometimes doesn’t do me any good.

    But I care and I want people to think about the fact that their friends and children are competing in an unregulated province that doesn’t have any impartial safety nets to protect their safety.

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  39. Donald Duck says:

    @ Tyler – You have one AJ Scales affiliate in Estavan and I’m not sure AJ is sending fighters to fight on HK considering he had (at last check) his own promotion.

    Outside of one legit gym you have a bunch of TKD and Kroty schools. Who exactly are these trained athletes training with in Estevan? What school are they with? Who has been teaching MMA for three plus years now.

    I’m not saying it isn’t happening but the facts don’t hold up.

    Donnie

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  40. cromero says:

    Our son competed in the amateur MMA event on Sunday. He is skilled in both jiu jitsu and kickboxing and was thrilled with the opportunity to incorporate both sports in the debut of amateur MMA. I would like to thank all of the people that spent so much time and effort on this project and finally brought amateur MMA to fruition in Ontario. It was not done for any financial reward or personal benefit. It was created for kids, like our son, who is an elite athlete, but had no opportunity to test his MMA skills in competition. This was an awesome event to witness. We did not fear for the safety of our son in any way. He has competed in Cask for a few years and it is a very safe organization. Our son was able to test his skills and came away saying, “this is the best thing I have ever done”.

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  41. Donald Duck says:

    Further to Robin’s comments, I’d like to know what people think about the creation of a “2nd class” ammy fighter. In a sense this is what a lot of these groups end up doing when they put stages into the regulation. The end result is that more people feel entitled to fight and promoters get to fill their cards with lower caliber fighters.

    In one sense this would be like paying to see a major act (Red Hot Chili Peppers or U2) and instead getting a couple of bands made up of people who just started playing a few months ago. Good experience for them but not all that healthy for long term development.

    While I think there should be ‘club league’ or ‘pick up’ MMA much like there is hockey, football or soccer I don’t think it should be promoters who are providing this service (due almost exclusively to the conflict of interest between business and safety).

    Sorry, Donnie hasn’t had coffee yet.

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  42. Robin Black says:

    I apologize for muddying up the waters here.

    There are 2 distinct amateur conversations going on here.

    A conversation about Saskatchewan and the unregulated events there.

    And a conversation about Ontario and the new PSO and the first amateur show there.

    Sorry if we’ve confused anyone.

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  43. Donald Duck says:

    Maybe I’m just old and cranky but I have some questions for cromero with regards to the above post:

    It was not done for any financial reward or personal benefit.
    How were the costs off set? Seems to me this organization has a “head of” or “director of” just about everything. Is this all volunteer? Was there a cost to participate? How were the costs allocated after the fact? Tournaments are very profitable things.

    It was created for kids, like our son, who is an elite athlete, but had no opportunity to test his MMA skills in competition.
    This was created for elite athletes? Granted as a parent myself I can see how my view of my kid’s achievements may look super human but… Also if your kid really is ‘elite’ then I don’t think a beginner event is the right venue for them at all.

    We did not fear for the safety of our son in any way.
    This comment frustrates me and gives me flash backs to the ’80s. MMA is not suppose to be safe it is a f**king fight! If you want ‘safe’ go sign up for the musical kata division. When we bubble wrap a sport like this up to the point where there is no level of risk involved then it just isn’t what I want to be associated with.

    Call me a caveman but I want to know that when my kids start training in MMA that there will still be a chance for them to leave the mat bloodied. I mean this within reason but I want Iron sharpening Iron not some foam wrapped rounded corners ‘near touch’ scored watered down bullsh*t replacement.

    Donnie

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  44. Jeff Harrison says:

    Donnie,

    I am positive that the board members volunteer their time.

    Elite?? Maybe not, depends on your definition.. but amazing young athletes yes.

    It is not a fight it is a sport. A competition. Do parents fear their kids getting hit by a puck? Checked into the boards? Speared to the ground in football? I am sure it’s an underlying concern..but probably not the same fear as if they were going into a full rules MMA fight.

    That is the point of this, it takes the extreme violence out of PRO MMA and makes it safe for the kids man. There are still risks, but they are minimized by safety protocol.

    Enroll your son in an unsanctioned MMA fight at the age of 15, show up wishing him harm, death before dishonour and all that in a caveman manor.. Hell even bring a six pack of Budweiser to the show just to spill on yourself as you flex your chest and display the painted words ” Just Bleed!” while screaming like a lunatic. See how long he stays injury free and interested in the sport.

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  45. Robin Black says:

    I am on the same page as Kru Jeff.

    I think CASK has done a great job getting AMMA started in Ontario. There is a long way to go but a successful injury free first event is a great start.

    I believe they want to evolve and improve going forward.

    I hope people will contribute time and effort helping them going forward.

    (just bleed?)

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  46. cromero says:

    I don’t think any government would sanction a sport allowing 2 minors to beat the crap out of each other. There is risk involved in any sport, but with kids the risks have to be mitigated. Noone wants to see a young kid get a concussion etc. on purpose. It is definitely a competition. MMA is just not about fighting, it is a tactical competition. That is a point a lot of people don’t understand. It is not just 2 cavemen with muscles knocking each other around. It takes years to learn submissions and how to react to your opponent. It is because of people like Donnie that it has taken such a long time to become legal in Ontario. Kickboxing Ontario is a not-for-profit organization. People in the organization are involved because of the love of the sport. They have done a great thing by helping to allow kids to compete in amateur MMA in Ontario.

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  47. Donald Duck says:

    it takes the extreme violence out of PRO MMA

    allowing 2 minors to beat the crap out of each other

    See, y’all just don’t get it. MMA is not about either of these two points but you guys instantly go there when challenged. Secondly, since neither of you know me, I don’t know how you could say I’m the detriment to the sport.

    Frankly all I did was challenge the notion of Tournamentizing MMA.

    Donnie

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  48. GM says:

    I will attempt to describe my experience with CASK in 2 parts. The first part deals with a session that helped prepare for this weekend’s event.

    I am not a member of CASK but I was asked to participate in a training session where I sparred with many individuals to simulate an Amateur MMA (AMMA) Match in the ring. The light contact Tatami MMA is different and I cannot comment on that. The purpose of this session was to test the officials and judges to see if they knew how to score/judge, officiate/regulate an AMMA match.

    This was accomplished by having
    Full matches using a mix of legal and illegal maneuvers
    Ground sparring matches only using legal and illegal maneuvers

    Note not all matches had illegal maneuvers. It was up to the sparring athletes to come up with such scenarios without telling the judges or referees ahead of time. The execution of illegal tactics was to see how the referees would react and if the proper actions were taken. They were very attentive and took all the necessary steps to catch such acts.

    I definitely disagreed with some of the AMMA rules. The first one being the standing 8 count. My belief is that a athlete should not be allowed to continue if he is overwhelmed with too many shots and cannot defend. However I learned this standing 8 count is applied even when an athlete’s head snaps back. So this can be from a simple jab. It’s a bit anal but I will explain below. The second gripe I had was with near submissions. If an athlete ‘looks’ close to being submitted it can be up to the referee to halt the bout before the athlete even taps out. Looking close to being submitted is not the same as being submitted. Anyone who grapples knows this. Sometimes people bait submissions to get a guard pass. This could be controversial and it seemed to have happened Saturday afternoon according to Joe’s blog.

    I voiced my above concerns to the CASK reps when asked for feedback and their response was unanimous: safety is their top concern. They said they need to prove AMMA is safe and once they produce a consistent safety track record then the rules could possibly be revamped to allow more techniques.

    I was ok with that. I felt like they were genuinely concerned for the safety of the athletes as well as the continuing growth AMMA.

    The second part deals with my experience as a spectator from this weekend’s event.

    I attended Saturday evening only. I cannot speak for Joe’s experience on Sunday.

    The Toronto Supershow website was not well done. I thought the only Amateur MMA (AMMA) fights were only on Saturday night. I had no idea there were more during Saturday afternoon. I was aware of the light contact Tatami MMA on Sunday. Information to find about this event was very hard to find. I am not sure if this is the promoter’s fault or CASK’s fault or both.

    Upon entering the venue at the Metro Convention Centre I was very happy to see respected members of the Martial Arts community: owners/head coaches of Matador BJJ and Kombat Arts were actual officials.

    Saturday evening was mostly a night full of Muay Thai and kickboxing matches. I was disappointed that there were only 2 scheduled AMMA fights. I was hoping to see more. Having said that the actual 2 MMA fights were very entertaining.

    The first match were 2 athletes around 135lbs I believe. I found they were evenly matched. Great striking with an average ground game. It went to decision. There was a cut in that fight but I thought the athlete was attended to and there was no health risk or danger imposed on either of the competitors. The second fight were 2 athletes around 145lbs. This fight ended quickly with the winner submitting his opponent from what looked to be an arm triangle from side control. The only question mark I had was the big slam that preceded the groundwork which led to the submission. I thought slamming was disallowed. Nevertheless, the athletes and coaches/cornermen were all respectful to each other before and after both fights.

    Even with only 2 AMMA fights, I thought the event was great as a whole. With the exception of the slam, I didn’t see anything unsafe or questionable about the event. The crowd looked to be very entertained and into it. I believe everyone was happy spending their $20 to support the athletes and the combat sports. I would do so again!

    In summary, is AMMA in Ontario perfect? Not at all. But I do think this event was a great start and can only get better. From the above posts it appears CASK is willing to take feedback. Hopefully a common understanding between conflicting groups or parties will happen for the good of the sport and athletes.

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