Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Notes from a Bellator Open Workout in NYC

  • Lyman Good looked in shape and prepared, Eddie Alvarez seemed to be in tip-top form, Zach Makovsky was maxing and relaxing.  Seriously, though, having known these guys since the very first time they fought, it’s hard to play the “reporter interviewing fighter” game.  My questions are more like, “So, excited to go to California?” and “Three sons?  Don’t you want a daughter?” 
  • The Tiger Schulmann fight team was there – Will Hamilton, Carlos Brooks, Nissim Levy, UFC fighter Nick Pace, KOTC champ Jimmie Rivera, ROC Louis Gaudinot – and as this Bellator shindig was eating into their daily kill-sessions, Tiger was going to have them all workout there.  Sadly, I had to leave before they began.
  • The gym where this all took place is called Mushin MMA, and it boasts IFL vet Erik Owings as one of its big cheeses.  I spoke with Owings a bit about what he’s been up to and if he’d ever consider getting back into the mix.  He said he’s not big on competing anymore – “The two happiest moments of my MMA career were winning my first fight and giving up fighting.”  Post-IFL, the lightweight did some traveling, hitting the world’s usual fighting hotspots and playing the role of starving MMAer until it was too much to take.  Consequently, Mushin MMA is his effort to monetize all that time put into the sport, and he has had an active role in training Northeast rising star John Cholish.
  • Fight Factory brawler Ricky Lee was there as well, and he echoed some of the same sentiments as Owings.  Despite having an absolute slobberknocker with Andy Main at ROC 24 and winning over the crowd with one of the best fights of the night, it ultimately all boiled down to fighting for money – and to Lee, that’s not the right reason to do it. 
  • It was good to see Mike Chiappetta and the Fight Nerd there, but when the fighters outnumber the media, the hard questions don’t get asked.  At least when you have Eddie Goldman present, you can shout out a steroid question and run and the fighters will be satisfied with roughing up Goldman.
  • I kid.  No one’s ever satisfied with roughing up Goldman.

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