#MMA #XFE31 (FREE MEDIA OFFER INSIDE) XFE 31: “Chocolate Thunder” attempts to calm the “Psycho” at Harrahs Casino Resort LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv!
On December 7th, XFE returns to the Harrahs Casino & Resort in Chester, PA with an ACTION PACKED night of MMA broadcasting LIVE and around the WORLD on GFL.tv with XFE 31! In the Main Event of the evening, Bellator veteran Shedrick “Chocolate Thunder” Goodrigde (3-6) will be squaring off Elder “Psycho” Ramos (4-2).
This is a stylistic match up and fan of MMA is sure to love! Goodridge vs Ramos was originally slated as the co-main event but due to injury, a cut eye on Mike Pope, this sure to be brutal attraction got the bump. Even though this was originally slated as the co-main event, Goodridge-Ramos has main event material written all over it.
“This was once of those fights that would have been a main event anywhere else and luckily, as always, we stacked the card. When Pope suffered the cut, we had a main event waiting in the wings. Here at XFE we try to make every fight main event worthy just in case something happens to this nature,” explained XFE promoter David Feldman. “Chocolate Thunder”, a Bellator veteran, as always is prepared for war at XFE 31 at Harrahs Casino & Resort in Chester, PA broadcasting LIVE around the WORLD on GFL.tv! “My training camp has been pretty good a couple nicks and bruises but other than that great,” said Goodridge discussing his training camp.
Goodridge, being the type of fighter that never shy’s away from a challenge, accepted his fight with Ramos without having any knowledge of his opponent. “I really didn’t know much about him did some research but I mean nothing really stood out. I see he throws an overhand right a lot from his hip and relies on wrestling. I feel I’m the better wrestler. I’m longer so I will be able to dictate the fight with my jab,” explained Goodridge when discussing his opponent and his opponent’s flaws. “I have no problem where ever the fight goes I feel I have the advantage standing and on the ground,” says Goodridge. Not only does Goodrdge feel that he has the advantage physically but he feels he has the mental advantage do to his big fight experience compared to Elder Ramos. ” I’ve been there I know what to expect and how to handle getting in that cage, putting on a good show, and getting the job done.” Like Goodridge, “Psycho” had a tremendous camp also.
“Camp for this fight has been super hard. I was originally scheduled to fight at 170lbs and I began cutting from 205lbs. When I got to 183lbs I found out my opponent had topull from the fight. After that I went through a few guys who I might fight and I said ok to them all but for whatever reason they decided not to accept the fight. Then I was told Shedrick was willing to fight me so I said ok but the problem was he fights at 185 and I fight at 170. As true professionals we both decided we want to fight and decided to meet up at 180. It has been a long road but I’m glad fight week is finally here. I had a very strong camp with my boys at Vanguard gym, who always kick my butt n push me as hard as they can. I’m also blessed to cross train with Kaizen MMA, Freedom MMA, and several other pro fighters who have made time in their busy schedule to come to VA n kick my butt.”
Unlike his opponent Goodridge, Ramos had a little bit more knowledge of his opponent when he agreed to this promising showdown. “Shedrick is a true professional I respect him and his team. With that being said I feel all my hard work will pay off. I’m comfortable anywhere and I know I can finish the fight from anywhere I want to take it. I’m ready to fight standing or on the ground. I’m confident on my skills so I’m not worried about anything I will finish it from anywhere,” the very confident Ramos.
Ramos also took the time to explain what kind of fighter he is & why he puts his life on the line every time he steps in the cage. “I’m a down to earth fighter who is chasing a dream. I’m doing my best to bring home a win to my beautiful wife n kids. I’m a fighter but that is not all I’m about. I’m also a very proud father of two beautiful kids Joseph and Hailey also I’m married to my high school sweetheart, who is my backbone. I’m very blessed to have a beautiful family that loves me n supports me so I’m already a winner” Both men, beaming with confidence, had two different version of how the night will finish but it doesn’t matter which man is correct because both are surefire was to please the fans in attendance or watching LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv!
Goodridge feels fans can expect, “Fireworks and a big finish coming from me. Last fight didn’t perform how I should of and now I’m coming back with something to prove.” While Ramos differs in opinion, “Fans should keep their eyes open because I’m coming to finish my opponent and I will do whatever it takes to do so. I have the skills, the drive, the knowledge, experience n the heart to bring home a win! Don’t let either of these men’s record fool you. MMA fans are in for a treat any time either man steps in the cage so when they clash against each other fans can expect fireworks made of violence!
Nicholas Wiley taking on Randall Brown for the XFE 170lb Championship, made its way to the co-main event after the departure of Algeo-Pope, is a fight to look out for. With both men’s amateur careers dwindling away, expect both men to go for broke so they can have have a full head steam when they embark in their journey of their pro career.
Also featured on this event is Zach Love squaring off with Andrew Bradley. “The moment this fight was signed it became an early nominee for “Fight of the Night” and that says a lot about these two fighters seeing how stacked this card is,” noted XFE promoter David Feldman.
Rounding up the card will be Justin Lesko Vs. Mouhamadou Sougoule, Charles Kowalchick Vs. Frederick Heim, Phuong Nguyen Vs. Israel Encarnacion, Roy Kofroth, Jr. Vs. Paul Turner, Michael Schlicker Vs. Bobby Malcolm, Jaymes Lewis Vs. John Beck. Also on the is Desmond Moore Vs. Damien Melendez, a fight in which Melendez looks for revenge the 2nd time around.
This is a can’t miss event for any MMA fan! Tickets are still on sale at the Harrahs Casino & Resort, with the low prices of $45, $65, & $100.
For those who can not attend this spectacular night of action LIVE, fear not, because XFE 31 will be broadcasting LIVE around the WORLD on GFL.tv! Order once and re live the action for LIFE only on GFL OnDemand. Click the link below for more info: http://www.gfl.tv/Events/Fight/MMA/XFE_31/2177 XFE 31 is sponsored by Rocco’s Collision, Harrahs Casino & Resort, and Martinez BJ!
ATTN MEDIA: For those who can cover this fight by being in attendance, you can cover XFE 31 via FREE MEDIA STREAM (upon approval) on GFL.tv.
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Former World Champion Kasim Ouma makes his long awaited return to the ring on Dec 11th in Allentown, PA LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv!
by Drew Archer
“I am elated to be associated with Impact Elite again.”
Former IZW head official Mark Wilson recently made the decision to transition away from his position as the most respected, unpartisan individual on the whole IZW roster and cashed that role and identity in for the man that I spoke with for this extended multi-part interview. Gone are the days of modesty and the understated, but respected, striped black and white referee shirt. The IZW World has now come face to face with the era of “The Butterscotch Stallion”; the flashy suits, underhandedness and arrogance that is Mark Wilson.
This Mark Wilson is personality plus and fits in extremely well with the haughty and conceited stable that has run roughshod over IZW for multiple years. With so many things in flux in IZW and as 2014 looms in the near future, it was important to end the year strong with some solid interviews and in this case, get the words straight from the horse’s mouth and find out a little bit more about the newest member of Impact Elite who has already begun to have an immediate effect on multiple feuds and rivalries.
Growing up in Missouri and spending close to a decade in Oklahoma before moving back to his stomping grounds in Neosho, Missouri, Wilson grew up around some of the best territorial wrestling in North America.
“I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t watching wrestling. I often watched All Star Wrestling [Bob Geigel] on Saturday afternoons with my granddad and Tri State Wrestling [Leroy McGuirk] on Sunday nights with my dad. For a time, Harley Race was my favorite wrestler, primarily because he was a part owner of Kansas City’s All Star Wrestling and was the top man in the area, as well as a multi-time NWA World Champion.
“But my favorite, who continues to be to this day, was Ric Flair. No other wrestler in any federation wore a suit and tie to every interview. No other wrestler made the business look classier. He dressed and lived as if he traded shares on Wall Street, except his office was the ring. Flair approached professional wrestling with a sense of pride and self-assurance I’d never seen, and I wanted to be just like that,” Wilson remembered.
Wilson was quite the athlete in his younger days as he became a duel star athlete during his teens. “I played football and wrestled in high school. I actually wrestled as a heavyweight because I was in the 250 pound range. But I loved it because the heavyweight match was always the last match of the night. You could send ‘em home happy or angry.” Even in high school, Wilson’s mentality was that of a pro wrestler, always looking to give the fans their monies worth, especially in the main event, so to speak. But it wasn’t until many years later that Wilson finally took a leap of faith and pursued his lifelong dream of being involved with the business.
“When I was younger, I just knew I was going to be a professional wrestler. Even as late as my early thirties, I still thought I could perhaps find a way into the business as a wrestler. But in my generation, it was well known that, unless you knew someone in the business, there was little or no chance of breaking in. I knew no one, and there were only a handful of wrestling schools in the country, which were far too remote for me to dig up roots and relocate.
“In January, 2009, I contacted Harley Race at his wrestling academy in Eldon, Missouri. I inquired about becoming a manager. He said that I would be better off working as a referee, as managers were mostly phased out at the highest levels of our business. I set up a day, which ended up being after a huge snowstorm, to meet him and tryout.
“I immediately knew this was going to be the hardest thing I’d ever done. But I was all in. I paid my dues to the academy and Mr. Race had me working by March. I made my debut on March 21, 2009 in a WLW Ladies Title Match in which Champion Amy Hennig defeated Stacey O’Brien. The match went perfectly.
“For two years, I made the drive to Eldon to train, oftentimes twice a week. Just the 20 minute warm-up would drive many away from pursuing their dream, but I loved the physical and mental test of the whole experience. My only regret is that I didn’t begin sooner. I didn’t start until I was almost forty years old. I often wonder where I would be or what I could have accomplished had I started 15-20 years earlier.
“In April 2009, I made a point to drive to a WLW show in Slater, Missouri, which was about four hours away and in which there was a possibility that I wouldn’t even be refereeing. Mr. Race decided just before show time that I would have the second and fourth matches. I had been studying the WWE referees on television and had noted how loud they were with their instructions, counts, etc. That night, I made an effort to be more assertive and loud during my matches. After the show, Mr. Race called me aside and said he would start having me do shows on my own going forward. I will always be indebted to Mr. Race and his late wife BJ for believing in me and giving me a huge head start in building my career,” Wilson added.
Breaking into professional wrestling is never easy and very few individuals have what it takes to begin that journey, let alone succeed in a grueling business that chews people up and spits them out. For Wilson that difficult trek was compounded by breaking in to the sport at an older age than most, but he has always been honest with himself and knew it was an uphill battle. One that he would eventually win.
“By the time I contacted Harley Race, I had long given up that dream [being a wrestler]. I was and still am realistic about wrestling at my age. Although I keep myself in shape, I have a lifetime of real world injuries, aches and pains from some of the physical work I’ve done over the years and some sports injuries that left some joints less than perfect. The matches I’ve participated in within the last year are opportunities that I know were too great to pass up. But I am also very careful and I pick my spots. I’m 5’9” and 170 pounds. And I don’t have years of experience as a wrestler, so I have to rely on cunning and my Impact Elite friends to overcome the size and knowledge gaps,” Wilson continued.
But Wilson has always been an optimist and able to use every little detail to his advantage. He brings something into the ring that other grapplers don’t have.
“My experience as an official gives me an edge in the mind game with the referee. I worked side-by-side with George Knight, Brock Landers and Chance Snodgrass and know how they will react in certain situations. I’m certainly not afraid to use that to my advantage,” Wilson added.
For Wilson, the transformation into his current role might be mind blowing to outside observers, but for Wilson, this is always who he’s been. “In a very real sense, I’ve been ‘The Butterscotch Stallion’ my whole life. However, I believe it was former IZW Champion ‘Mr. Saturday Night’ Michael Barry who tagged me with the name several years ago and I ran with it. Barry and I have traveled all over the country together and he is one of my most trusted advisors and mentors. And let’s be honest here: The Stallion isn’t some gimmick. It’s who I am. I’ll make you hate me during a match and steal your girlfriend all in the same night. And your girlfriend will thank me in the morning,” Wilson ended with.
On that note, this concludes PART ONE of my interview with the one-of-a-kind “Butterscotch Stallion” Mark Wilson. In upcoming parts find out Wilson’s take on members of Impact Elite, gruesome injuries he has suffered, thoughts on owning a promotion of his own, why he doesn’t consider himself a manager and much, much more.
Dodd Ready for Mid-Term Striking Exam at EFC Gladiators This Saturday
When it comes to wrestling, New Jersey Phys. Ed teacher and mixed martial arts fighterWill “The Thrill” Dodd (1-0) gets an A.
But when Dodd climbs in the cage this Saturday night (November 30), at the Parsippany PAL, in one of the supporting bouts of The Darwish Brothers’ next epic MMA show: EFC GLADIATORS, he will be looking to work on his new-and-improved striking skills… a mid-term exam in stand-up fighting, so to speak.
Tickets for EFC GLADIATORS are priced at: $45, $65, and $125 Cageside and are on sale now at the EFC website: efcmma.com.
“I’ve been really working on striking and I feel even more prepared than I did for my first fight,” said Dodd. “It’s coming along nicely, so I feel confident about that. I want to see where my stand up is. I feel really good because of all the work I put in.”
A longtime wrestler and a wrestling coach, 26-year-old Dodd and a partner started a wrestling class at the EFC gym last March. The idea to try mixed martial arts came from the persistence of EFC head and event co-promoter Hani Darwish.
“I was teaching wrestling classes for kids, and that was pretty much my only job at the EFC. As time went on, Hani talked to me and asked if I was interested in training MMA and seeing how it goes. I’ve always been interested in fighting and boxing and things like that, so I said ‘Definitely.’ As time went on and training was going well, he said he was able to get me a fight in August. I didn’t hesitate and took the fight. I just kind of hit the ground running with it. I won my debut by arm triangle in round one. ”
Dodd says it’s not common knowledge he’s a fighter at the middle school in Plainfield, New Jersey, where he’s taught gym for the past three years, but those who do know have been very supportive.
“It’s not a widely known thing at work. Some of the kids I teach know. They get a kick out of it. I was trying to get kids into signing up for wrestling for the school, so I printed out some pics of UFC fighters who wrestled in high school and college and put myself in with some of the other fighters. They said, ‘wait a minute, that’s you!’ A few of them wished me good luck on my fight coming up.”
“Will has come along quickly because of his hard work,” said Hani Darwish. “He really is a sponge when it comes to new techniques and skills. He has a very strong wrestling background to begin with and now he’s rounding out his skills very well.”
Dodd says he didn’t expect his life to take this path, but now that he’s tried it, he’s in for the long haul.
“When I first started I thought I’d have one fight and try it, just to say I did it. But, the feeling I got when I won was something that can’t be replaced. I fell in love with it. Now, I want to take it as far as I can. Obviously I’ll go step by step, but once I feel I’m ready, I would be interested in turning professional and having a career.”
But for now, he continues to study and prepare for all the tests and exams he will have during his evolution into a cage fighter.
“On the ground, I could finish a fight pretty quickly. But in this fight, I’m going to be trying to stay on the feet and see where I’m at. It’s definitely been a big learning curve, but I train every day. Some days are harder than others, but every day I’m doing something. I’m always trying to learn and improve.”
That’s the mark of a good student.
In the EFC GLADIATORS main event Saturday, outspoken EFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Christopher “The Neighborhood Legend” Vallaro (6-2), of Ardon MMA in Brooklyn, will defend against undefeated Robert Bodden (2-0) of Spartan Fitness in Deer Park, New York.
In a very special added attraction Montsir ”Monster” Mohammad will return for a showdown against undefeated Andres Velasques (2-0) of New Jersey’s Pure MMA.
The Parsippany PAL is located at 33 Baldwin Road, Parsippany, NJ 07054. On fight night, doors open at 6 pm and the first bout starts at 7 pm.
On November 30th, “Reading to Rumble” will take place from the Santander Arena (formerly the Sovereign Center) and will be broadcast LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv!
In the main event, WBA #10 ranked contender Travis Kauffman (26-1)will take on late replacement Jason Barnett (14-14) for the WBU International Heavyweight title.
Kauffman has put together an impressive 8 straight victories since his sole blemish, a very controversial loss to Tony Grano, in 2009. Kauffman, a workhorse has been working hard to prepare for a bout with Manuel Quezada, who fell out as an opponent recently. Travis knows, if he is able to score a highlight reel KO over his opponent, it could help raise his #10 ranking in the WBA. The rise of ranking in turn could lead to a title shot which would be accompanied by a hefty pay day.
The last minute opponent change hasn’t worried Kauffman a bit. Kauffman, who was sparring with Bryant Jennings, Tomaz Adamek, and Patrick Farrell for the with Quezada stated “Change isn’t going to hurt me because of my experience. I can handle whoever they put in front of me.”
His opponent Barnett, has done battle with a who’s who in the Heavyweight division. Stringing together 2 back to back victories, Barnett is looking for an upset because a win could lead to an even bigger pay day. Barnett has shared the ring with top rated fighters such as Mike Perez, Luis Ortiz and recent Prizefighter finalist Jason Gavern. Barnett, has been known to cause an upset or 2, when he stopped John Poore (21-3) and previously undefeated Erik Leander (8-0) back to back in 2009 & 10.
Both men carry significant KO power so don’t expect this fight to go the distance. This fight could be over in the blink of an eye, so whether you in attendance at the Santander Arena or watching at home LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv, don’t leave your seat!
In the co-main event, Frank Santos De Alba (9-1-2) will take on upset minded Osnel Charles (9-7-1)over the course of 6 rounds.
Frank Santos De Alba, is a fan favorite in the Reading area and is very highly touted. After suffering his only loss in his pro debut, he battled back going 9-0-2 in his next 11 bouts. The crafty southpaw has a tendency to out box his opponents but has been known to score a knockout on occasion. Not one to disappoint Santos De Alba plans to put on a great performance against his toughest opponent to date in Charles.
“When I step in the ring it is very exciting. My fans and family always have my back and I always like to put a show on for them when I step in the ring” explained De Alba.
Even tough Santos De Alba never saw his opponent fight he is aware that it will not be an easy task at hand. “I never had the chance to see him fight but from what I am told he likes to box a lot and has been in there with some very tough opponents”.
His opponent Charles, a once very promising prospect, has recently hit a rough patch in his career going (0-4-1) in his last 5 bouts. He dropped decision loses to some of the east coasts top prospects such as Allan Benitez (6-1), Naim Nelson (8-0), Rod Salka (16-2) & Anthony Cacace (7-0). His last victory was in 2011, a scintillating 1st round KO of the favored Anthony Flores (9-3-1). Even though he hasn’t tasted victory in 2 years, he knows it can all be turned around in 1 fight. “This is my championship fight. I have to be back on top and there is no choice about it” exclaimed Charles.
Most people would be concerned about fighting in their opponent’s backyard but it does not seem to faze the confident Charles. “That is the way I like it anyway. I have to make a statement in his backyard.” Yea he is popular prospect but who has he fought?” asked Charles. “Look at the people I fight and look at the people he has fought. That should say it all.”
Promising prospect Khalib Whitmore (3-0), who is trained by Nazim Richardson, will see action against Mark Baltimore (1-2). In just 3 fights Whitmore was nominated for GFL’s “2013 Prospect of the Year”. Batimore is a tough fighter, but Whitmore will be looking to impress the Reading crowd as well as the fans watching at home LIVE WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv.
Rounding up the card will be welterweight’s Evincii Dixon (2-3-1) against Rafael Montalvo (3-4. Featherweight Wilfredo Morales will be making his pro debut against Jesus Gonzales (1-3). Also lightweight Travis Thompson (4-11-2) will take on Emil Rodriguez (0-3). Finally, fan favorite Keenan Collins (15-8-3) takes on an opponent TBA.
Watch this event LIVE & WORLDWIDE on GFL.tv! Order once & re watch for LIFE on GFL On Demand!
By Jay W Bennett – NewsandSentinel.com
PARKERSBURG – It could be quite the week for professional boxers Mike Sheppard and Dustin Echard.
Sheppard, the Wirt County High School teacher, is the main event on Tuesday night’s FOX Sports 1 television show that starts at 9 p.m. He’s set to face Antonio “Magic Man” Tarver on the “Golden Boy Live” card at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla.
Echard, who last fought on Aug. 3 at the Fish Bone Gill and Grill where he dominated a six-round unanimous decision versus Shawn Laughery, will put his 7-0 (5 KOs) mark on the line Saturday night against Tom Hanshaw Jr. (2-1, 2 KOs). Echard’s fight is on the undercard of the Paul Spadafora/Johan Perez 12-round main event for the WBA super lightweight interim world title at the Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort in Chester, W.Va.
“This is what people dream about. I’m just happy for the opportunity. It’s like an opportunity for a lifetime,” Sheppard said of the chance to put a halt to Tarver’s thoughts of finding success in the heavyweight division.
Morgan “Big Chief” Fitch knows his next fight is the biggest of his professional boxing career.
And he is the first to say just admitting that is an understatement.
Fitch (11-0, 5 KOs), a super middleweight, will be putting his undefeated record on the line against Darnell Boone (19-21, 8 KOs) on the undercard of the Redemption show Saturday night at the Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort in Chester, W.Va., headlined by the Paul Spadafora vs. Johan Perez for Perez’s WBA light welterweight interim title bout.
Don’t be fooled by Boone’s overall under .500 record.
After all, he is the only fighter who has ever knocked down Andre Ward, the No., 2 ranked pound-for-pound fighter in the world, and he also owns a knockout victory over current WBC champion Adonis Stevenson.
Boone knocked Stevenson out in the second round April 16, 2010, to hand him his only defeat.
Stevenson got revenge by knocking out Boone in a six-round slugfest March 22 this year.
Boone also fought and lost twice against WBO champion Sergey Kovalev, one being a split decision.
Even though Fitch is unbeaten and Boone has a sub-.500 record, Boone is ranked higher than the Charleroi resident in the current world rankings.
“He’s a very tough guy who is coming to fight,” Fitch said of Boone. “He’s been in there with some of the best fighters around.
By Greg Gulas
Youngstown’s Darnell “Deezol” Boone is fighting in a familiar place. And in a familiar situation.
On Saturday at Mountaineer Racetrack and Casino, the 1999 Wilson High graduate will fight his 20th undefeated foe when he takes on “Big Chief” Morgan Fitch (10-0, 5 KOs) of Pittsburgh in a six-round super middleweight bout.
Boone (19-21-3, 8 KOs) is 6-11-2 against undefeated fighters.
“I love fighting someone that is undefeated simply because I want to prove to them that they are not invincible,” said Boone, who will fight near his hometown for the first time since 2007. “I enjoy being the underdog, probably because I have become accustomed to that role during my professional career. When you beat someone with an unblemished record it just gives you a great feeling.”
The fight is the undercard of the 12-round main event for the interim WBA super lightweight championship bout, which pits Paul “The Pittsburgh Kid” Spadafora (48-0-1, 19 KOs) against Johan Perez (17-1-1, 12 KOs) of Caracas, Venezuela.
Boone is 3-6-1 in his last 10 fights but his manager, Jeremy Simpson, said Fitch has never faced someone as tough as Boone.
“This will be the biggest test for Fitch of his young professional career,” Simpson said. “Darnell was really never managed correctly through the course of his career and there’s no doubt in my mind that he would have been a world champion had he had the right guidance from the start.
“Darnell is a true professional in that he gives you 110 percent, no matter if it’s in training camp or in the ring. I never have to worry about whether or not Darnell is in shape or ready to fight. My job is to get him the right fights at the right weight and I believe middleweight, but no higher than super middleweight, is where we need to be.”