Day Tripper/Dream Weaver
Posted On:10/13/2005 7:14am
Style: Shorei-ryu & Kumdo & TKD
Originally Posted by maslinc.com article
"This is going to be one of the most exciting sports to come to the U.S. in a long time," declared Chuck Norris as he opened the inaugural World Combat League event in Dallas, Texas on October 8, 2005. And Norris was on the mark as the crowd of nearly 5,000 witnessed the start of something very big. With an audience full of excited spectators as well as key potential sponsors, TV executives and celebrities, the first four World Combat League teams went head to head in the debut of this new sport. Unfortunately for those who were not in attendance, the event was a pilot so it's unlikely to be shown in its entirety to the public anytime soon (the footage will be used to put together a pilot to market the league to networks). But, for those in the audience, it was quite a treat to see the action, the excitement, the hard hits and the knock outs provided by the combatants in the concave circular playing arena.
The WCL's premiere event ended well for the home state of Texas with the Houston Enforcers winning a narrow victory over the Los Angeles Stars and the Dallas Dragons winning big over the Oklahoma City Destroyers. Read further for highlights of the action from each team match up.
Long before the action on Saturday night, the World Combat League (WCL) administrators worked hard to put together a professional environment for the combatants as well as the audience. When this reporter arrived on Friday in the early afternoon, the fighters were relaxing in the hotel lobby but were clearly full of excitement and anticipation. The first comments from all were to compliment the WCL for excellent treatment thus far. Upon arrival at the event, the fighters were greeted at the airport, taken to their hotels and immediately provided with all the information they need such as schedules, uniforms, WCL t-shirts and hats as well as accomodations. They had already participated in a dinner with Chuck Norris, a weigh in, photo shoot and pre-event video shoot. It was a whirlwind of excitement.
Saturday afternoon was the trip to the Dallas Convention Center for a walk-through of the team entrances to the arena (to prepare for the filming of the main event), to get equipment ready and to warm up. The competition was to begin at 7:00 p.m. It was dead silence in the hotel lobby as the fighters filed into the vans. Everyone realized that this was it - it was time to perform and, since this was the inaugural event, a lot was resting on the shoulders of the fighters as well as the promoters and organizers of the event.
The action began at 7:00 p.m. with an opening video montage and a short opening speech from Chuck Norris and then it was on to the action! The format for the World Combat League is to match teams of seven fighters (6 men and one woman) against each other in two halves of competition. The fighters are matched by weight/gender. In the first half, the combatants fight one three-minute round against his or her match. Each match is scored and the scores are cumulated for an overall team score. At the end of the first half, there is a ten minute half-time with entertainment and then a second half with another three minute round between each of the matched competitors. At the end of the second half, the total team score determines the winning team. The fighting arena is a unique circular, concave platform with no ropes to allow maximum viewing pleasure and the arena had the professional touch of giant teletrons that show highlights of the action, the scores and slo-mo of great hits.
Houston Enforcers v. Los Angeles Stars
The first battle was between the Houston Enforcers and the Los Angeles Stars. Houston was banking on its numerous kickboxing champions but the rules of the WCL are definite equalizers because the requirement of constant action is not a favorite for kickboxers. The sport karate fighters in the mix for this match up would be Jennifer Santiago, Jason Tankson-Bourelly (both representing Houston) and James Decore and Carlos Tearney (representing Oklahoma City).
Los Angeles won the opening coin toss and selected Peyton Russell, an international kickboxing champion as their first match fighter. He faced Ryan Madigan, a full contact and muay thai fighter. When the opening bell rang, the two fighters went hard but a spinning elbow by Russell caught Madigan in the head, opening up a gash that bled sufficiently for the medic to declare Madigan unable to continue. Since the cut was caused by an illegal technique, Russell was disqualified and Madigan won the round for his team. More blood was in store as Nathan Bagby (Houston) faced Benjamin Brotherton (LA) when Brotherton suffered a cut to the head. The women were next on the agenda as Jennifer Santiago (Houston) entered the arena to face Angie "Mingo Warrior" Woolum (LA). Woolum's background was as a full contact sport Jiu Jitsu champion while Santiago was not only a sport karate fighter but a two time Golden Gloves champion. Santiago ran to the ring looking like she was ready to eat a raw steak and she dished out head jarring straight punches to Woolum but Woolum took them all and stayed in the round. In the end, Santiago won the round for her team.
Derrick Panza (LA), a former Team Paul Mitchell member and now the current ISKA heavyweight kickboxing champion, found himself in a difficult match as he faced Dan Erickson (Houston). Erickson's credentials noted that he is a pro and national kickboxing champion. Erickson's longer legs, arms and his better conditioning were his assets as he battered Panza enough to warrant a standing eight count partway through the match. Kevin Hudson (Houston), a two time world kickboxing champion, had his hands full with Carlos Tearney (LA). Tearney dominated the match with his fast and accurate ax kicks and successfully dropped Hudson. Stephen "The Wonder Boy" Thompson (Houston) made WCL history with the first knock out of the league as he faced James Decore (LA). Decore, who definitely got the vote from the females in the audience as the best looking fighter of the evening, came from a continuous fighting background in the National Black Belt League (NBL). Decore was holding his own during the match until he threw a round kick and followed with a punch. Thompson caught Decore with a counter round kick straight to Decore's head and Decore never saw it coming. He dropped like a stone. Although Decore didn't win the match, he was still the winner in the hearts of his fans as some of the girls in the audience were almost in tears at the sight of their favorite fighter down on the mat. Look for Decore to make a comeback in the arena and make his adoring fans go wild.
The final round ofr the first half pitted sport karate fighter Jason Tankson-Bourelly against five time national Jiujitsu champion, Craig "The Hammer" Oxley. Tankson-Bourelly was strong throughout the round, hitting Oxley at will and controlling the match. In the final seconds, Oxley caught Tankson-Bourelly with a hard shot to the groin that halted the match for a moment but in the end, it was Tankson-Bourelly with the better score. At the end of the first, half it was tied 74-74 between the teams.
The halftime performance was a demontration featuring some of the top sport karate forms and weapons competitors from the NASKA circuit. Steve Terada, Mindy Kelly, Steven Horst, Chloe Bruce, Chris Walker, Vince Johnson, Ryan Wells, Rudy Reynon, Marcel Jones, John Su and Marc Canonizado worked for hours to put together a well-choreographed ten-minute performance to entertain the crowd.
The second half of the competition began with a great second round between Santiago and Woolum. The three minute first round had definitely tired out the fighters but Santiago worked hard to land her straight punches and in this round, they were more effective as Santiago faked a round kick and then buried a punch in Woolum's face, knocking Woolum out and earning Santiago the first knock out for a female in the WCL.. Tankson-Bourelly was back to face Oxley in the second match. This time Oxley was much stronger but Tankson-Bourelly was still able to hold his own. However, it was clear that the first round had taken its toll on Tankson-Bourelly as Tankson-Bourelly's ax kicks had little effect on Oxley despite their landing over and over. Oxley started to take his fight to Tankson-Bourelly's body alternating with a couple hard shots to the head and it was the best decision he made as Tankson-Bourelly dropped his hands just long enough for Oxley to land a spinning heel kick to Tankson-Bourelly's head, dazing Tankson-Bourelly and opening him up to a flurry of punches from Oxley. As the center referee stepped in to pull Oxley back, Tankson-Bourelly staggered across the ring and collapsed. The center referee gave him a standing eight count and allowed the match to continue, but Oxley's next attack was quickly cut short as Tankson-Bourelly dropped again and the referee ended the match with a TKO call.
Tearney gained more points for his team with a 15-10 score after another dominating match against Hudson. Tearney had the advantage throughout the match but knowing he was ahead, he seemed to not want to risk his lead by going in for the finishing blows on Hudson at the end of the match. Erickson and Panza met again. Panza faired much better early in the round, rocking Erickson during the first sixty seconds with blow after blow to Erickson's head and using kicks to take advantage of the rule that allows a fighter to kick the upper front leg of an opponent so long as it is immediately followed up with an above the belt technique. However, Erickson was not fazed as he stayed in the match and began to meet Panza's punches with his own. In the last ten seconds Panza turned it on again and managed to end the round with a 17-12 score putting Los Angeles in the lead for the team score.
In the WCL, fighters who knock out their opponent's in the first round get to bask in the glory for approximately twenty minutes and the reward for that effort - a fresh fighter to face in the second round as the second string fighter for that weight will be brought in to take the place of the downed fighter. This is what happened to Thompson as he came back for the second round and had to face a new fighter, Tim Nunez, in the place of Decore. But it made no difference to Thompson as he pasted a nice kick on Nunez' head that resulted in another knock out and a new record in the WCL. Thompson's knock out blow also made the difference for his team as Los Angeles was ahead before the final round. Thompson's 15-0 score in the final round allowed Houston to edge out Los Angeles with a final score of 125-121, giving Houston the first win in the WCL.
Dallas Dragons v. Oklahoma City Destroyers
The second team fight for the evening featured the hometown favorites from Dallas and the crowd went wild as its local team was announced. In the first round, local favorite Freddie Poole (Dallas), an international kickboxing champion, faced Shannon "The Cannon" Hudson (Okl. City). Although Poole had the crowd on his side, it was Hudson who was scoring the points as he battered Poole with his punches and kicks. The final score for the round was 17-10, giving Oklahoma City the starting lead. The women took to the ring in the next fight as sport karate turned kickboxing fighter Angela Hayes (Dallas) faced Jiujitsu champion Jeri "Fists of Fury" Sitzes (Okl. City). Hayes started out with a flurry of kicks and punches but Sitzes surprised everyone when she started dishing out some fantastic fists of fury and kicks of her own. As the fight wore down to the final seconds, it was Sitzes with the advantage as her combinations stymied Hayes and controlled the match, giving Sitzes the win and putting Oklahoma City further in the lead.
Big Ed Burris (Dallas) is an undefeated kickboxing champion and he also has some continuous sparring experience in the NBL under his belt. Burris faced the undefeated kickboxer Toby "TNT" Tillman (Okl City) as the representatives of the super heavyweight category at the event. If you got a look at Burris' photo in the event program, you'd be hesitant to step into the ring with him as his photo looked like an angry mug shot. He brought a no holds barred mentality into the ring with him and showed no mercy with his leg kicks, body kicks and the constant pounding of his fists into Tillman's face. Not many could withstand the battering delivered by Burris. Tillman was not one of the few as he went down late into the round and received his first standing eight count. Tillman proved his determination and resilience by getting up to face Burris once again but was soon down and receiving a second standing eight count. Tillman tried one more time and Burris pounced on him as only a 6' 4", 260 pound man can do. As the bell rang, the center referee called Tillman down for good and Burris left the ring with a TKO under his belt.
One of the shortest fights of the evening was between Crafton 'Blaze' Wallace (Dallas) and Lemont "Bad Boy" Davis (Okl City), both with kickboxing backgrounds. Within the first 30 seconds of the match, Wallace delivered a knock down blow that had Davis receiving his first standing eight count. Soon after, Wallace landed a beautiful knee to Davis' face that brought Davis down for the count. With the Burris' TKO and Wallace's knock out, Dallas moved ahead in points with a total team score of 53 for Dallas and 35 for Oklahoma City.
The next three fights went to the judges for decision. First, Takuhiro "Kamikazi' Kamikozono duked it out with Thomas 'Thunder Kick' Longacre. Kamikozono, representing Dallas, was clearly the favorite going into the round but the World Combat League rules were not to Kamikozono's advantage as Longacre dominated the match with his furious kicks and punches. Kamikozono ended the match with a bloody cheek and only 10 points to Longacre's 16. With Longacre's win, Oklahoma City was starting to mount a comeback. In the next round, sport karate fighters Angel Huerta and Askia 'Ski' Allison went head to head. Although Allison probably had more muscle mass than Huerta, Huerta had more action as he pulled out all the stops and got aggressive with Allison. Huerta's combinations had the desired effect as Allison wore down throughout the three minute match and was unable to respond blow for blow to Huerta's techniques. In the end, Huerta kept his Dallas team ahead with a 17-11 win over Allison. The final match for the first half pitted undefeated kickboxer Pete 'The Secret Weapon' Spratt (Dallas) against Colby 'The Cobra' Snyder (Okl City). Spratt controlled the match all the way - it even appeared that he could have knocked Snyder out at any time but was saving that dramatic blow for the second half. When the first half ended, it was Dallas with a solid 97 points and Oklahoma City trailing with only 71 points. Oklahoma City would need a lot of knock outs in the second half to regain the lead and win.
The half time entertainment for this team match up was provided by Chuck Norris' Kickstart students, both underblack and black belt. The Kickstart program brings martial arts to at-risk schools in the sixth grade and provides martial arts training as a supplement to education for kids all over Texas and beyond. The entertainment between the two team match ups was provided by Team Chip of Abilene, Texas, featuring ISKA world champion breakers Chip Townsend and his wife Glenna.
The second half of the Dallas versus Oklahoma City battle started with Big Ed Burris taking on the second string replacement for Toby Tillman since Tillman was unable to continue. Any fighter who suffers a knock out blow is forbidden from fighting in any WCL events for 30 days and only with medical clearance. Unfortunately, Burris had expended most of his energy beating down Tillman in round one and taking on a fresh, rested new fighter after that grueling first half made it impossible for Burris to provide as dramatic of a round. However, Burris stayed in the game and hunted down his new prey. The replacement fighter tried valiently to kick and punch Burris and bring down the giant. But the blows were like little bug stings to the unfazed Burris and Burris moved forward unrelentlingly while punching and delivering the occasional kick to his opponent. In the end, Burris won the round 16-11, allowing Dallas to maintain its lead.
Angela Hayes got another shot to try and bring down Sitzes in the next match but after Hayes' initial burst of punches and kicks, Sitzes went back to her game plan of landing leg kicks followed by punches to Hayes' face. Sitzes even threw a little of her Jiujitsu training into the mix as she rolled backwards and flipped Hayes at one point when Hayes lost her balance. Later in the match, Sitzes caught Hayes with a nice spin backfist but Sitzes was not able to reach her stated goal of knocking Hayes out although Sitzes did win the round with a 15-13 score. Sitzes' win helped her Oklahoma City team but not enough as the overall score was now 126-97 in favor of Dallas. Oklahoma City was badly in need of a couple of knock outs to keep it in the game.
Huerta and Allison were next on the agenda and Huerta came out looking even stronger than in the first round. He attacked from his corner with a fury, raining down punches and kicks on Allison before Allison had a chance to react. Although Allison began to counter Huerta's volley, it was too late as Huerta was able to dominate the match and finish with a 15-11 win, keeping Dallas in the lead. With only four more matches to go, it wasn't looking good for Oklahoma City. However, the next match was Poole versus Hudson again and Hudson had done well in the first half. Poole wasn't willing to let Hudson have the advantage again in front of his hometown crowd and in the second half he summoned up all his strength to go head to head with Hudson and win the round with a 16-11 score. Dallas was still on top with a 38 point lead. The only way Oklahoma City could possibly win was with a dominating round and at least two knock outs in the remaining three rounds.
Kamikozono and Longacre went at it for their second round. Kamikozono's cheek was taped after it had opened in round one but that band aid didn't last long as Longacre went right to work. Kamikozono needed a much stronger round here against Longacre - not necessarily for the team score but for his own pride. But it wasn't in the stars this evening as Longacre again dominated the match and received a 16-9 score, putting Oklahoma City in a position to win if it could get two knock outs in the next two rounds. However, knock outs were not to be as Wallace faced the second string replacement fighter in his round since he had knocked out Davis earlier. Although there was no knock out by either fighter in this round, Wallace did dominate and win with a 15-9 score. The crowd was hoping for Spratt to finish off Snyder in the final round of the evening. Spratt worked Snyder's body hard but couldn't capitalize on his success with a knock out. Snyder made it through the round - barely - but in the end, it was Dallas with a definitive 196-153 win over Oklahoma City.
With the end of the final match between Spratt and Snyder, the World Combat League's inaugural event came to a close. Everyone was still excited about the event and the concept and when asked, many commented that it was "awesome". Of course, there were things that didn't go quite as planned but nothing intrinsic to the concept of the sport itself and nothing that couldn't easily be fixed for the next event. The World Combat League has the potential to really be the next great sport in the United States and internationally.
Make sure to stay up to date at SportMartialArts.com and the World Combat League website to find out where the next World Combat League event will take place and how to get tickets. Remember, the first two WCL events may not make to TV as they are pilot programs so the only way you will get to see the action in full is by being there in person. In addition, the more enthusiastic people in the crowd, the easier it will be to sell the sport to potential investors!
The World Combat League will be holding another debut event (not for TV broadcast but for sponsors and to develop an additional pilot) in March of 2006 in either Las Vegas or Connecticut. The first season for the World Combat League will begin in late April or early May of 2006 and the regular season events are expected to be televised. Fighters interested in the upcoming pilot events or participating in the season can still apply at the World Combat League website. For sport karate fighters, SportMartialArts.com has been selected as an official scouting orgainization for the World Combat League. This means, if you apply to be a fighter, the World Combat League will be asking SportMartialArts.com for a recommendation and input as to your fighting ability in the sport karate world. SportMartialArts.com will be scouting at all its Full Coverage events for the rest of 2005 and throughout 2006. SportMartialArts.com will focus its scouting on the individual divisions and Superfight division at the Diamond Nationals (October 14-15, 2005 in St. Paul, MN), the individual and team sparring matches at the AKA Grand Nationals (October 28-29, 2005 in Chicago, IL), the individual and Superfight divisions at the Pan American Internationals (November 10-11, 2005 in Miami, FL), and the individual and continuous sparring divisions at the NBL Supergrands (December 26-31, 2005 in Buffalo, NY). Scouting will also take place at all Full Coverage events in 2006 but initially at COMPETE Nationals, World Series of Martial Arts, Ocean State Grand Nationals and Quebec Open. You can find our list of Full Coverage events by going to our Supporting Tournaments links listing, which is frequently updated.
So it looks like they are recruiting not only point fighters but boxers, MT and Jujitsu people as well.
Jeremy M. Talbott
Originally Posted by Phrost
"Bullshido isn't just a place to hang out when you're browsing the net. We really are trying to accomplish something fucking extraordinary here that nobody's ever had the balls to do before."
Originally Posted by D.Murray
"Which is better, to learn the truth, or to enjoy the illusion of being right when you are not?"
Originally Posted by hangooknamja88
My definition of Ki is our energy. it's rather hard to explain it in words. It's not some mystical type of energy like white people...
Posted On:10/13/2005 12:06pm
Style: Maybe Kyokushin soon...
I dont know what to think of this event. One on hand they seem to have fighters from various background, and some seem to hold major titles. On the other, it also says that they will look at applicants with a background in sports karate with some favor. I would have to see a list of what the rules are. If it all is standup, why the hell would a JJJ compete?
And really, how could can it be is good ol' Chuck is promoting it.....
Posted On:10/13/2005 12:21pm
Originally Posted by Jaric
And really, how could can it be is good ol' Chuck is promoting it.....
Don't underestimate the power for Chuck-do :sleepy5:
Posted On:10/13/2005 12:26pm
That and the BowFlex :XXonlyamo
Hole in one.
Posted On:10/13/2005 12:45pm
Style: LongFist CMA
You mean the totalgym
Posted On:10/13/2005 1:00pm
I need Video links and pics ...
Becouse this writing style could make a TKD forms tourney sound this good .
Posted On:10/13/2005 1:27pm
Style: MT (no, not "empty")
Sadly, there was little press coverage of this event by Dallas media. Never saw results in the Dallas Morning News and there was a fairly sarcastic article on the WCL in the Observer (the weekly alternative paper).
Posted On:10/13/2005 1:58pm
Style: Mushin Dao, BJJ
so i'm unclear on the rules, they said several guys were jiu jitsu but then talked about them throwing kicks to the head? is groundfighting / throws/ takedowns allowed?
I think it was two ninjas taped together, to make one GIANT NINJA!!!!
Posted On:10/14/2005 3:33am
Sounds like kickboxing. Wich is obviuosly not a new sport. Maybe they are wearing lighter gloves or something. Did they mention anything like that? I didn't read the whole thing...
"The depressing thing about tennis is that no matter how good I get, I'll never be as good as a wall." - Mitch Hedberg
El Guapo says dance!
Posted On:10/14/2005 8:22am
I believe they tally up the points for the teams for the overall decision of who wins. From the picture in the article it looks as thought they are wearing boxer gloves. It seems to be more of kickboxing match in a team form. Didn't they do that concept a long time ago in the infancy of kickboxing? There is no grappling in this that I'm aware of.
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