JC Fight Promotions: Best of the Best II – A Proving Ground for South Texas Fighters

Luis “the Law” Vega, and D J Fuentes, will be on the same card, come June 14, 2014 at Hero Fighting Championship’s “Best of the Best II” hosted by JC Fight Promotions and Charlie Clark Nissan.

Vega will be fighting as a Featherweight in the main event, where he will be going up against Jamal Emmers, whoTexas Fighters will be conducting a first time defense of his Featherweight title.
Defending the title against a tough, and very hungry, Luis Vega, will require everything Jammal Emmers can bring into this fight. Those in the Valley who have witnessed Vega’s ability in a fight will be betting on him. Rest assured, this main event fight will be a memorable one.

Fuentes will be defending his Bantamweight title in the co main event fight against Jose Ceja. Fuentes is old school, stand up, karate kickboxing, with good hands, and devastating spin back kicks that those like myself so appreciate, having drilled such into students of bygone days. This will be a thriller to watch, and to watch closely. Outside the ring, Fuentes is Mr. Charisma, making friends with everyone. Once inside the ring, he is all business.

Among the remarks of commendation to be spoken about the challenger, Jose Ceja, is this; he doesn’t back away from a fight. In a business where fighters try to pick and choose their fights, he takes them as they come. There are those who will question the wisdom of such a determination on his part. “Look,” one will say. “Build up your reputation by taking on fights you can win. You’ll be gaining experience at the same time. What’s the rush?” There is much truth to that. On the other hand, Jose’s take is that you learn the most by taking on and fighting the best. Hurt? He’s been hurt. All fighters get hurt. But if you must get hurt, do so against the best. At 2-0 as an MMA Pro, and 1-0 as a pro boxer, he is coming into this fight as an underdog to take on the experienced and very tough Dee Jay Fuentes, just as he assented a year ago to an offer to fight an equally tough Ricky Palacios, in a fight which never materialized. In agreeing to take on D J, Ceja is taking on a versatile all around fighter. Ceja can box, Ricki Palaciosand comes to the cage eager to fight. He’ll get a fight against D J Fuentes.

Ricky Palacios will also be on this card. He has been fighting on a reality show “Combate Americas” and will be fighting Joel Scott of Beaumont. In a previous encounter, Palacios TKO’d Scott in the 3rd round of their fight. I have written about Ricky Palacios in the past, and of the much potential I see in him. He is a versatile fighter, with hands that thus far have spelled a KO for those who have faced him, in mixed martial arts or boxing. On this note, it is Palacios, and not Jose Ceja, who should have been meeting up with D J Fuentes. This, perhaps, will yet be a fight future.

Another up and coming fighter is a Jeff Bonugli student, Soryu Karate fighter Raymond Banda, who is currently 2-0 as a pro. He will face a strong opponent in Harlingen’s Daniel Duran. I mention Ray Banda because much is riding on him. Can a Soryu Karate trained fighter make good in MMA fighting? I believe he can, particularly if trained by Jeff Bonugli. As I have from the beginning envisioned Texas Soryu Karate, (and I differentiate it from its weak traditional parent in Japan) its parameters go far beyond traditional karate. I shall yet see that. Yes,
much is Jeff Bonugliriding on Ray Banda, but he can handle it. He carries on his shoulders the reputation, not only of Jeff Bonugli as his instructor and trainer, but mine as well, as Jeff Bonugli’s instructor.

We have heard Jeff Bonugli speak of his desire to see to it that fighters are rewarded financially for their hard work and sacrifices. This is true, and there are those who can attest to it, having been recipients of his willingness to give generously. And yet, I would suggest that there may some who would take advantage of such goodness. They have forgotten the value of a simple “thank you”. There is a Spanish saying: “Eres como el azadon, todo para aca’, y nada para alla’…” It translates roughly: “You are like a garden hoe, everything is scraped your way, and nothing goes back in return…” We get the picture, don’t we? Gratitude is a wonderful thing.

Consider that some very tough Valley fighters are in the offing. They are developing, and JC Productions is playing a vital role in such development. And this is it, a financial scholarship, $2,400 monthly for the aid of those who become the best of the best!

JC Fight Promotions - Best of the Best II

Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios Making a Comeback for JC Productions “Texas Pride” MMA Event

jc promotionsA New and rejuvenated Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios is making his comeback in Beaumont Texas at the Montagne Events Center, with Jeff Bonugli’s JC Productions “Texas Pride” MMA event on Saturday, September 28. Comeback? Yes, following some tough times in his life, some of them self made, what follows now is a comeback. He’ll be fighting a very tough Jose Ceja who is currently 1-0 as a pro MMA fighter and 1-0 as a pro boxer, which will make for a very interesting fight, considering that El Gallero favors stand up, and boxing in particular. While I am personally a friend to both of these boys, the odds stand in Ricky’s favor, but by no means should he be complacent. Jose will come to fight, and he comes undeterred by the stats, which show Ricky 6-0 as an amateur, 2-0 as a pro, and 1-0 as a boxer, all fights won by KO. In Jose’s favor is the fact that he can box. I’m partial to either of these boys. Expect a slug fest. I would be very surprised if either of these boys take the fight to the mat.

“I See Myself Walking Out Victorious!” – A Few Words With Le’Ville Simpson

Le'Ville Simpson

A few words with Le’Ville Simpson who will be stepping inside the cage on Saturday March 23rd in Corpus Christi at the American Bank Center. Coming off an impressive Pro debut in San Antonio. Lets get started!

sPidA: You are coming off a great Pro debut in San Antonio,TX, was going Pro the best decision for your MMA career?

Simpson: I really felt going pro was the best decision. Everyone in the TWMMA family felt I had proved myself in my amateur bouts and they gave me the thumbs up to make that next step.

sPidA: You have a strong Team in TWINWOLVES MMA, what sets you guys apart from other gyms?

Simpson: TWINWOLVES is a family more than a team. On teams you have guys that like to compete against one another, but all my brothers in the gym we push each other to help better one another. There is no jealousy among us. Our coaching staff is phenomenal ranging from Kasib Taylor, to Daniel Moraes, and Jamir Toledo. We always joke we’re the hidden gem in the middle of Texas.

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sPidA: I keep up with the news and am shocked at how much your team mates are willing to travel to compete, is fighting away from home a norm for you guys?

Simpson: It’s been like that since we all started. We’re always traveling – a promoter calls and we show up to fight.

sPidA: Your upcoming bout you will be traveling to Corpus Christi, are you nervous or excited about this next match up?

Simpson: I’m excited about fighting in Corpus Christi.I’ve seen some good fights there so its exciting to know I’m going to be apart of that.

sPidA: What do you know about your opponent, how do you see this fight going?

Simpson: All I really know about Kirk is that he had a good amateur career and that he’s a hometown guy that’s gritty. I’m not intimidated by his record or the hometown fans, its me and him only in there and I still see myself walking out victorious.

sPidA: What got you into Mixed Martial Arts? Was competition something you’ve always been involved in?

Simpson: I starting training to get into shape really, but when an old school football teammate and current TWMMA fighter Geoff Neal made his debut, I figured what the hell why not.

sPidA: A big part of MMA is entertainment, are you looking to put on a good show for your next bout at ROCKS Xtreme MMA?

Simpson: I always look to put on a show for the fans, nobody wants to feel like they wasted their money on boring fights. You will never get a boring fight with Twinwolves on the card.

sPidA: Who (other than your coaches or team mates) do you look up to in the sport of MMA?

Simpson: Rafael Cordeiro hands down man, one of our coaches Jamir Toledo actually worked with him at the Chute Boxe Academy back in the day in Brazil. Watching the old Pride Fc fights and seeing how successful all his guys were really makes me want to learn from him.

sPidA: Harlem Shake or Gangnam style, why or why not?

Simpson: Neither man, they’re both stupid dances.

sPidA: Thank you brotha for your time.  Is their anyone you would like to thank to wrap this up?

Simpson: First off I would like to thank GOD for everyone He has put in my life to help me achieve everything I have so far. My family for their support. All the coaches at TWMMA for passing on all their knowledge down to us and spending the time they do with us. Everyone in the TWMMA family who help prepare us for fights, its really a honor to represent our school.

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Rio Grande Valley MMA Fighter, Ricky Palacios, Believes in Making the Impossible Possible

Ricky Palacios MMA Fighter from The Rio Grande Valley
[Ricky Palacios – image courtesy of townnews.com]

Ricky “El Gallero” Palacios loves to fight, not because he likes to hurt people, but because he wants to share his unique talent with the world. He’s worked extremely hard to build a solid fight record, he owns his own gym, has a large Valley fan base, and continues to push his way to the top. His amateur record stands at 6-0 and he concluded his amateur career after obtaining two titles. In his pro debut he won his fight by TKO stoppage putting him at an uptick of 1-0. His next opponent, Loroy Martinez, comes into this fight off of a decision loss but won his pro debut by TKO as well. Ricky intends on making a name for himself, not just in The Valley, but whenever he steps into the cage, ring, or mat… Enjoy the interview!

Tell us about what led you down the martial arts path and why you fight?

What led me to mixed martial arts was mainly my weight. I was close to 200 lbs, which is very large for my stature. I was determined to lose weight. I started out getting into street fights so I set a goal to lose weight and get a legit fight in the cage. It was part of my bucket list to get in there and after I fought and won my first fight, I made it a goal to become a champion!

What would you like to accomplish in your MMA career?

To be honest everyone wants to be a world champion but to me I see it as a goal like everyone else. The main thing is that I’ve done it so later in life when I’m older I won’t be haunted with the question, “What if?” or “I should have?” knowing that I tried something I wanted is an accomplishment in itself and not too many people get to do what they dream of doing. With that being said, I would like to give others the opportunity to do what they dream of. I’ve been blessed to be where I am at and with my own gym “El Galleros Den” now I can help others make their dreams come true. That’s what I’d love to accomplish!

As a pro MMA fighter and boxer, what else would you like to compete in? Which discipline are you most passionate about?

I’ve been working to be an all around fighter. I’ve been thinking about trying out kickboxing or Muay Thai just to see where I stand. I fell in love with boxing and I think I’m good at it. I’m not afraid to try other martial arts and compete. All I need need to do, or anyone for that matter, is to set a goal and have a positive mind set, and never give up.

What advise would you give to someone who’s currently struggling with obesity but wants to make a change like you did?

Now that’s a great question that I love to answering! I was close to 200lbs and now I walk around 148 lbs. I set a goal to lose 15 pounds but the main thing is your mind set and how dedicated you are to accomplishing that goal. I had no one to push me and I didn’t know anything about a diet or fat burning. I did everything naturally just worked out and the willingness to do it. No one was going to stop me no matter what! I set high expectations for myself even when it seemed impossible. I made it possible and that’s how it should be.

Who inspires you?

My inspiration is my spouse and children, They give me the drive to succeed. They have been my back bone since day one. I had a lot of financial problems when I first started training and they have always stuck with me. I was never alone when it came to motivation before or after a fight. Like I said, “make the impossible possible.” We use to sell chicken plates for gas money just to get to the northern cities in order to fight. The we’d come back broke again. The promoters didn’t really care if I was broke or not, they just wanted me to make a fight happen.

Tell us about your upcoming fight and your training regimen going into it.

My upcoming fight is against Leroy Martinez. My training is going great and I feel like I’ve got all the tools to come out victorious March 16! I see every fight as a championship fight and I never think I’m the best or that I’m going to walk through anyone. It’s a fight – anything can happen.

Your opponent Leroy, is there bad blood?

I really don’t take anything personal but I feel like he talks too much. I don’t know, maybe that’s how he pumps himself up but I could care less. I just see it like any other fight. He has said some stuff that shouldn’t have been said. Ido feel like he needs to work extremely hard to beat me. He says that he wants to knock me out or break my arm or something like that. I really don’t care. All I know is that he has a good training camp and I’m pumped because he should be at his best with no excuses. It should be a very entertaining fight. He may want to make it a jiu-jitsu match but I hope he worked on his stand up cuz I’m coming at him hard!

Anyone you’d like to thank, any shout outs?

I would like to thank GOD for my blessing with him anything is possible. My big brother Jeff Bonugli, my family, LX BJJ, Green Ghost Academy, all my sparring partners, Vitamin Shack and shake, H&B fitness, Charlie Clark Nissan, Phatboy racing, and all my sponsors, and fans.  – Ricky Palacios – El Galleros Den

El Gallero’s Highlight Reel

[Interview] Richard Odoms Feels the Burden to Keep Big MMA Cards Coming to San Antonio; Prepares for Legacy FC 17

Photo courtesy of Pro Elite
[Photo courtesy of Pro Elite]
San Antonio, TX, Jan. 14, 2013 – Richard Odoms is a humble man, who puts his family first, but still has the time to manage a super busy schedule that includes serving his community as a police officer and a local business owner. He has officially been studying martial arts for over 19 years and is a 5th Dan/Master in American Moo Duk Kwan karate. He has been teaching this traditional martial art for the past 9 years.

Richard Odoms will be stepping into the cage for the eighth time with a clean 7-0 record.  We had the privilege to get a quick interview with him before his fight in San Antonio, TX for  “Legacy Fighting Championship 17.”  This will be his biggest fight to date in his home town as the co-main event against All-American collegiate wrestler Jared Rosholt on AXS.TV.

What’s your biggest motivation to fight at this point in your career?

My biggest motivation is my family. I want to set the good example to my children and students to be the best in whatever makes you happy. I don’t want to be that old man that everyone knows, who says I could of, would of, should of. My dream right now is to compete with the very best martial artists in the world.

How do you feel about fighting for Legacy FC in your home town?

Man……I am on top of the world right now. I couldn’t believe that it was going to happen. San Antonio has taken the backseat when it comes to MMA. A lot of people here like mixed martial arts and there is a lot of good martial artists in San Antonio. I feel our city has been overlooked when it comes to big MMA cards. I feel the burden to keep big MMA cards coming to San Antonio is on the local fighters’ back. I’m glad to be one of those local fighters that plan to keep big cards coming our way.

Being a cop, a martial arts school owner, and an mma fighter – how do you prioritize your time? Do you feel that each area of your career compliments one another?

I am so busy. I hate when people tell me that I can make time to do this or to attend that. I just don’t have the time. Other people are depending on me! At work, as an officer, the community is depending on me. At my school, Martial Arts Academy of San Antonio, my students are depending on me to be there to provide quality martial arts for the children and adults I teach. As a fighter, I am to inspire others in their walk through life. My children depend on me to inspire them. I feel it is my job to show, not just talk about becoming a productive member of this society, but to live it. Not being afraid to dream, knowing how to set and conquer goals towards achieving that dream, and show them that hard work is rewarded with success. Then you top all that with being a father, not just a donor. When all of that is said and done I still have to be there for my family. It is what I have helped to create, so yeah I have to still make time for my children and wife. Everything I do compliments each other. It has to or else it would have to be thrown out. I’m a big believer in not wasting my time, everything I’m involved in, I love. If you make the things you do in life what you love, it all becomes a pleasure rather than a chore. It also has purpose.

What can your fans expect from you in this fight and moving forward?

Expect that each time I get into the cage I will be a more improved and exciting fighter than the last time I competed. When I step into the cage Feb. 1st, I will have been out of competition for one year. I am not the same fighter as before. Everything has improved, and I can’t wait to show the world.

Richard Odoms
Photo via Richard Odoms FB page

With your last fight dating a year ago – what have you been doing to prepare for this fight? Who are some of your training partners?

I try to twist negatives and turn them into positives in everything I do. Being out for a year was not my choice. I had some contract issues, along with other mishaps. I got new management with U.S. Elite Fight Management, made other connections to make myself a better fighter, and stayed in the gym waiting for opportunity to knock. Signing on with U.S. Elite Fight Management is a great asset to my MMA career. This will be the first fight I go into with sponsors. I just didn’t have the time to seek sponsors. It has opened a lot of doors for me. Mike Rangel of Know Pain MMA has helped me with my overall MMA. Aaron Rosa has been helping with sparring. There is no substitute for top caliber heavyweight sparring. Pete Spratt (Big Brother) / RPBJJ has been helping me with Muay Thai. His high caliber experience and knowledge is top notch and doesn’t get any better. I’m always learning from him that’s why I call him Big Brother. Rodrigo Pinheiro has helped me with my BJJ. Wallace Tarver gives me an outside of the box look at MMA from a traditional martial arts perspective. Mr. Moreno of Blue Tiger Academy always keeps a stack of guys to push me in sparring. Suzy Swinger got me an opportunity to coach on Cage Quest. Ms. Swinger is great and has opened so many doors for me. I met King Webb of Luling MMA through her. Mr. Webb has been helping me with my BJJ as well. Through Mr. Webb I met Luiz Charneski. Luiz is from Curitiba, Brazil, home of some of the greatest fighters ever. He changed up my striking and added a new approach to my MMA game. Training with Luiz has been great. He doesn’t speak a lot of English, and I… very little Spanish and no Portuguese. We communicated with the language of mixed martial arts and it is lovely. While I wish I was in the cage the entire time, it was like I went to MMA college and I’m back ready to show everyone my new stuff.

How much do you know about your opponent Jared Rosholt’s fighting style? Do you have a specific game plan coming into this co-main event fight?

I don’t know much about him. I do know he is a top caliber and All American collegiate wrestler. He is tough, has a good chin, improved his boxing, and is hungry for a win! My game plan is to leave Cowboy’s Dancehall with a win and leave a good representation of what MMA is all about in San Antonio.

How do you mentally prepare before stepping into the cage?

I relax, I’m calm. I visualize the fight. It is all mental. There is nothing more I can do to change what I’m about to do. All of the work has been done in training. I have trained to win and all that is left for me to do is pray with my wife, Thank God for the Victory, step into the cage, and go out there and perform.

Any last words? Anyone you’d like to thank?

If you are in the San Antonio area, please come out and support the Legacy Fight Card. All of the local fighters plan to come out and put on outstanding fights for you. I would like to thank my wife, Janie, for all of her understanding and putting up with me while I’m training and getting better. She has to pick up the slack when I’m unable to be there. I’m very appreciative. I’d like to thank all of my training partners from the many different schools I train at that come to help me get better, take a bruise or two, and have the respect to come back out and train with me again. Thank you all for making me a better martial artist and extending a helping hand. I would like to thank the leadership at The Martial Arts Academy of San Antonio for keeping my school running the way I would have it if I wasn’t absent while training. I would like to thank the U.S. Elite Fight Management family. Mr. Claudio and Mr. Royer thank you for the work you do. I would like to thank my fans and sponsors. Thank you all for your support.

Taking Your Game to the Next Level – Nomad

I wanted to start the New Year off by talking about how Strength, Conditioning, and Nutrition play a vital role in mixed martial arts (MMA). Often times we see fighters, both amateur and pro; run out of energy in the cage. Good energy levels from bell to bell play an important role when it comes to whose hand is raised at the end of the fight. I’m sure many of you have seen a fighter come out for Round One with high energy, however; by Round Two or Three become sluggish and unable to defend themselves and ultimately loose the fight.

Ray Rod The Judge
Photo courtesy of Spida Photography

Fighters must find the right balance in their training and in their fight. Fighters should understand that strength, conditioning, and nutrition are also part of a successful game.

Joel Jamieson, founder of 8weeksout.com, is one of MMA’s top Strength & Conditioning Coaches and pioneers and is widely regarded as the nation’s leading expert in the science of physical conditioning for MMA. His no nonsense scientific approach and Precision Conditioning training system is helping to revolutionize how today’s top fighters get in shape and has been instrumental in the success of more than 20 of the world’s best fighters from the UFC, Dream, WEC, Shooto, K-1, PrideFC, and other major organizations.

In one of Joel’s articles titled “Ultimate Fight Conditioning – Push the Pace” he writes “regardless of a fighter’s weight class, every cell in their body needs a constant supply of energy to function. This includes the cells within muscle fibers, of course, and they need energy in order to do their job of contracting and producing the force it takes to throw strikes, go for and defend takedowns, attempt a submission, etc.”

He goes on to say “Dynamic sports like MMA that require an athlete to produce a ton of energy to support high levels of muscle force and power for up to 15-25 minutes no doubt rely on both aerobic and anaerobic energy production – there is simply no way that either system alone is capable of producing enough energy by itself. This fact is generally well known and accepted, but what’s often misunderstood, however, is just how important the balance between these two energy systems really is.”

He then breaks it down to three major components, developing your cardiovascular system to deliver as much oxygen to the working muscles as possible, training the muscles to become more efficient at using the oxygen that your cardiovascular system is able to deliver and finally incorporating a training method called pace work. For combat sports, this type of work should take the form of sparring or pad/work and the general guideline is simply to deliberately train at the maximum pace you can sustain without any real measure of fatigue.

Right here in Texas we have great strength, conditioning, and nutrition personal trainers who are making a difference for Texas fighters. The Muscle Factory, of San Antonio, is one of those training facilities. Roland Gonzalez, Owner and Head Trainer, of the Muscle Factory has been helping amateur and pro MMA fighters for years. Roland will tell you that “we are not here to replace the importance of stand-up, wrestling, or jiu jitsu, we are here to supplement it.”

Roland continues “We can help improve a fighter’s game by first improving their cardio and muscle endurance by incorporating a variety of exercise regiments that fit the fighter’s needs and lifestyle. Secondly, we would start a diet plan that would help with strength and muscle recovery that will help maintain fighter energy.”

“The only real way to make lasting changes, regardless of your goals, is to use a holistic (meaning whole body) strategy. Every muscle group, including the heart the lungs, nutrition and diet, and positive mental wellness all have to be included in your overall program.”

While at the Muscle Factory I was able to watch Roland put Ray “The Judge” Rodriguez, a pro mma fighter out of San Antonio, though one of his two hour work out. Wow….it was high paced! I was impressed with Roland’s personal attention to detail and motivation during Ray’s work out.

After his workout, Ray told me “Training at the Muscle Factory has made me a complete fighter. My size, strength, stamina, and speed have all improved greatly.” Ray also said “Roland Gonzalez is amazing at what he does, and is one of the most genuine people I have ever met in my life. He’s been at every weigh in and been able to help me put back on 15 to 20 pounds before my fight time.”

In closing I would say seek out a professional trainer who can help you with taking your game to the next level.

If you wish to contact Muscle factory please call 210-771-9044 or visit them at www.themusclefactory.synthasite.com

Nomad
Photo courtesy of Spida Photography