Fighter Spotlight: ‘Jose Ceja’

Jose Ceja – Photo via Jose Ceja’s FB

Port Arthur’s Jose Ceja, a tough young man with a penchant for deep thought, made his professional boxing debut this past Saturday night at the South Padre Convention Center, fighting a four round Welterweight bout against Ramiro Balli. It was a fight which saw Ceja work the body well. Nor did he neglect the head in a bout which saw Balli in trouble in the second round, and against the ropes much of the time, under the barrage of punches Ceja rained down on him. In the end, the judges voted Ceja a unanimous win in this, his pro boxing debut. Ceja won his pro MMA debut this past March in JC Production’s “El Orgullo del Valle” in a mostly s standup brawl against Mission’s Rene Gonzalez. Ceja also won that bout by unanimous decision. Both Balli and Gonzalez will aver to the fact that Southpaws, and Ceja in particular, can be difficult to fight. As in his boxing debut this past Saturday, the MMA judges gave the fight to Ceja, unanimously. Ceja, who fights with the intent of receiving his young sons approval, trains in Los Fresnos at the Green Ghost Academy with Jeff Bonugli and at United MMA whenever he is in Port Arthur.

On June 21st, Ceja will be on the MMA card for the second of four MMA events this year promoted by JC Production’s“El Orgullo del Valle” to be held at the Pharr Events Center. Cody Williams will be the main event of the night at that “Pride of the Valley, ” MMA event June 21st, and he will be pitted against D’Angelo de Souza Vieira. Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios will meet Jay Dee Martinez in the co main event. A lot is at stake, as fighters are vying for the $50,000 contracts to be issued in March 2014 .

“The Pride of The Valley” Coming to Pharr Events Center March 16th

EL ORGULLO DEL VALLE
At 6’3, 205 pounds, 29 year old Aaron Rosa is in his prime. Fighting out of Rodrigo Pinheiro’s Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Rosa has the benefit of working on his ground game with one of the best jiu jitsu practitioners in the world. Here Rosa can also count on excellent sparring partners, one of them being Muay Thai specialist, Pete Spratt.

At the very beginning of his professional mixed martial arts career, Rosa racked up ten straight wins, fighting for various promotions. He is currently 17-5 and is a veteran of UFC, Bellator, Strikeforce, and EliteXC. His wins include six KO’s, four submissions, and seven by decision.

Rosa will be facing Tony Melton in the premier fight for the “Orgullo del Valle” MMA event in Pharr, Texas on March 16. The 31 year old Melton is currently 7-3. Six of those wins came by KO, and one by decision. While Melton appears to be the underdog in this event, Rosa is experienced enough to know that Melton, with at least a thirty pound weight advantage, and six KO’s under his belt can be dangerous.

Immediately before the main event, Cody “Wolverine” Williams, 4-4, fighting out of the Texas Karate Academy in Beaumont, Texas will meet the Valley’s (McAllen) Randy “the Hurricane” Fuentes, who is currently 5-3. Fuentes has been augmenting his training by throwing his hat into the boxing ring, where he won his first pro fight by unanimous decision in the Valley’s “Border Brawl” in September of 2011, and at this date is 4-0 as a professional boxer.

Although not a main event fight, the grudge match between Ricardo “El Gallero” Palacios and Leroy “Guapo” Martinez, promises to be a scorcher. Palacios and Martinez own schools separated by only a few miles in Mission, and each has a substantial following. In the weeks leading up to March 16, there have been insults and substantial “smack” talk traded between the two camps. If there is a war in the offing, we can expect it between these two fighters. Seven prelim matches will come prior to those listed above, with plenty of action promised.

After 8 shows put on by JC Productions over a two year period, promoter Jeff Bonugli, with the support of Valley Nissan dealer Charlie Clark, will be signing 5 fighters onto contracts worth $50,000. Yes sir, the fight game is coming to the Rio Grande Valley in a very big way.

Combate Americas is Casting for a Telemundo Spanish-language MMA Reality Show

combate americas

Combate Americas is a new Spanish-language reality TV series and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) franchise dedicated to identifying and developing emerging, young fight talent from Mexico and other Latino countries around the globe.

Combate Americas has partnered with NBCUniversal-owned TV network Telemundo to deliver Combate Americas reality TV programming to a national audience in The United States.

Combate Americas is being produced by a multi-award-winning production team, including UFC creator Campbell McLaren and Matador Entertainment.

Production on the Combate Americas reality TV series will begin in Miami, Florida in March 2013.
Fighters selected to participate in the Combate Americas reality TV series will be required to live at a designated location in Miami, Florida for a period of 8 weeks.

During production, Combate Americas fighters will participate in daily training camps with an assembly of world-class boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, jiu-jitsu and strength and conditioning trainers, and will be required to compete in MMA bouts sanctioned by the state of Florida.

Here’s an opportunity for up-and-coming Texas fighters to be a part of a Latino MMA Reality show that will be televised on Telemundo. The final casting will take place late March/early April. They are looking for Spanish speaking fighters between 145 and 185 lbs, ages 18-30 years old. If the fighter is chosen, they will cover travel, 8 weeks of living expenses, and the fighters will be paid to fight.

Right now they are just taking bios so no hard commitments up front. If interested, please send a headshot, quick bio, sherdog or mma.tv record, and contact info to media@texasfighting.com. Participants who are interested must send these details before Thursday to be considered.

UPDATE: Along with the bio the fighter should include full name, height, weight, date of birth, city and state fighting out of, pro win-loss record and any notes of interest (if the fighter is a police officer or fire fighter or holds titles or high belt ranks in any martial arts, that is important) as well as one hi res photo and links to any fight footage and/or interviews available online.

Keep Texas Fighting!

JC Promotions is Coming to the Rio Grande Valley and Looking to Make a Generous Impact!

Jeff BonugliRGV, TX, January 7, 2013 — JC Promotions is coming to the Rio Grande Valley March 15th! They’re not only looking to bring an exciting event to South Texas but to become the new home for many of the local mma fighters all across Texas. The promoter has been involved in martial arts for close to 40 years, is a former full-contact fighter himself, and one might add, a large contributor to the local fight scene.

He’s hitting the mma scene hard and looking to make a generous impact. A concern he has expressed to us at TexasFighting.com is that he can remember “fighting for the same scraps the fighters of today are competing for.” While their are a few exceptions, according to JC Promotions, “most promoters don’t care about the fighters and all that is about to change.”

Knowing the financial sacrifice involved with training full-time, JC Promotions will offer a paid contract for the fighters who prove themselves in the cage. This contract will include a monthly training salary, on top of the purse involved in each fight. Perhaps the greatest innovation for fighters on contract will be an arrangement to also be paid during injury recovery.

JC Promotions: “One fighter will be fighting to win a contract and the other will be fighting to keep it. This will create the ultimate proving ground for the best of the best in Texas cagefighting.”

“More information regarding JC Promotions to come”

Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios is no fluke


Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios is no fluke, and he definitely loves to fight. He took up boxing ten months ago, and in a tough Rio Grande Valley, where there is no lack of tough fighters of Mexican descent, took the Valley’s Golden Gloves Championship in his weight class.  “El Gallero” (Palacios) is a class fighter, and with a large following. Some hundred and fifty folks drove up from the Valley to see him fight in his Pro MMA debut, in his new role as “El Orgullo del Valle,” (“The Pride of the Valley”).

I was sitting ringside with Charlie Clark  to watch Rickey take on an improved Gerardo Botello in this main event contest.  The first round clearly went to Ricky, but it was obvious he was scoping out, and testing, his opponent. His buzz saw nature emerged in the second round, which he clearly dominated. I was impressed by his utter confidence. Palacios is exciting to watch; you quickly gather he enjoys what he’s doing, and he’s good at his game, controlling the ring and the fight, and handling his opponent seemingly with ease. He moves with fluid grace and power, like a cat, and although Botello appeared physically larger than Palacios, at no time was he able to control him.  One understands Botello taking him to the mat; Ricky’s  stand up game, between bobbing and weaving, is a flurry of devastating punches and damaging round house kicks.  Nonetheless, when on the mat, Ricky employed alligator rolls at will, and in what ever position he found himself, he was fighting, punching, and from what should have been difficult angles, driving punishing knee strikes. He didn’t punch his opponent’s rib cage, he pummeled it, with such power that the impact could be loudly heard at ring side. As Bottello tried desperately to cover his ribs, it was obvious the pummeling was taking its toll. Prior to the fight Ricky had announced to his stand up fight coach and mentor, Jeff Bonugli, that he would end the fight by knockout or tap out. The fight was called as a TKO at 1:47 of the third round.

Nor does one seek to denigrate Gerardo Botello, a courageous scrapper. After all, his opponent was the best fighter in the house. While there was at least one other better than average fighter in the matches prior to the main event, (there was one, and inevitably there will be an exciting match up);  he too would have fallen to Palacios.  Bias? We shall see. Pound for pound, my money is on Palacios, for whom the sky is the limit.  Yes, if I were to bet on any of the fighters in the arena bridging the gap between now, and a future in the UFC, my money would be on Ricky Palacios, “El Gallero.”

Ricky Palacios