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Fighter, Trainer, Team Interviews


The Garage Training Session - Pictures

This Friday's PFC 10 card is very stacked with great fighters and match-ups and we were able to interview a few of them. On our first motorcycle trip last week we went out toThe Garage in Porterville, where trainer Paul Estrada teaches some of the sickest ground submissions I have ever seen.

Dirty Fighting with Greg Harper

Every fighter needs to build a base of every art, wrestling, boxing, jiu-jitsu, kenpo, karate and just about anything else that is available. Not everyone's trainer knows how to put these things together, that"s where a "Kaji" guy comes in and shows the fighter how to combine and apply all of these arts and use them to fight, says Harper. In a cage or on the street, Kajukenbo is a mixed martial art that should be taken seriously.

Kid Dynamite - Ready to Explode

This is one of the hardest working kids out there, shows up trains hard. Hits like a machine. I have to tell him to stop sometimes because he wants to keep on going. He's one of those kids you like working with, says trainer Mike Popp of David Espinosa.

Phil "The Pain" Collins - Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere

Well, that part about me not wanting to fight him is not true, I want to let him know that I will fight him Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere. If any promoter is willing to pick up this fight and watch him lose, I have no problem choking him out and making him pass out. We were supposed to fight earlier in the year but they didn’t want to pay me. They wanted me to sell tickets to make up for the small purse I was to receive. I have no problem fighting the guy but I at least have to make a living. To be honest, I don’t think he is that good. I have no problem tapping out a wrestler. If the fight ever happens at 185lbs., he will probably try to take me down like the last time and I will choke him out again.

Alijah Reni - David vs Goliath - Small Q and A

If you haven't heard of Alijah Reni (4-1) the MMA fighter, get ready to put him on your list. Reni is coming off of a huge win in a true David and Goliath match when he faced heavy favorite Lavar Johnson at Wargods on July 26 at the Fresno Convention Center. Giving up 37 pounds to his opponent, Reni was coming in as the big underdog and into an arena filled with Lavar Johnson fans. To talk about his thoughts on the fight, I caught up with Alijah Reni via a phone conversation regarding his fight:

Bushido Kid's - Fighters Thoughts

I look over at the belt, sitting at ringside, that we're fighting for and get an adrenaline rush. The ref asks me "Are you ready?!" I nod my head "yes".

.. "Fight!!"

The Return of The Black Superman - Lavar Johnson

Lavar Johnson is one of the toughest heavy weights to come out of the Central Valley. From Madera, California, this 6'2" beast of a man known as, "The Black Superman" or Lavar "Big" Johnson, has stunned opponents with his heavy hands and decapitating uppercuts. Johnson began his fighting career with the Tough Man competition. It was at a friends house where Johnson heard a radio commercial that was advertising the Tough Man event. Johnson had turned to his friend sitting next to him and asked him, "Do you think I should do that?" Five minutes later he hung up the phone and said to his friend, "I fight next week." Five months after his Tough Man debut and conquering all his bouts by knock out, he is an MMA fighter. His first MMA bout was against Doug "The Rhino" Marshall. "I didn't train for that fight," Lavar said. Just like he did not train for his Tough Man fights, but he still managed to win. "The only thing I would do was hit the bag," said Johnson.

Jorge Ruiz - A Long Way From Home

Jorge Ruiz discovered the meaning of hard work at an early age. Jorge grew up in a typical Mexican household in Riverside County, where every summer, Christmas, and Easter Break, and let’s not forget the weekends, was dedicated to working in the fields picking fruit or pruning vineyards. By the age of ten, Jorge understood the importance of his hard work and how vital it was to his family’s livelihood. Despite not having a normal childhood, Jorge was able to take a negative situation and turn into something positive for his future.

Mike Moreno - El Palo Duro

He comes from a wrestling background that began in the 5th grade and ended with the Fresno City Wrestling Team. Soon after, Moreno followed fellow teammates, Billy and Jorge Evangelista, to train Muay Thai with Jasper, who is Buhawe's head trainer. Before the new training complex was built,Team Buhawe trained at a nearby park and at Gold’s Gym. Buhawe has come a long way, as well as, Mike Moreno. His striking is at its best and his Jiu-Jitsu is only getting stronger especially after a second place finish at the Mundial’s Blue Belt division.

Jacob Jeff - No jackpots, just hard work.

"Well being VP for the PFC is more of a hobby, its fun" Jeff explains "I take care of most of the back office things that need attention. Make sure everything is in its place for the show." "If thats your hobby then what do you call MMA training and now fighting" I ask. "Well I guess I have two hobbies, VP for the PFC and MMA and one job" Jeff replies. "Actually I started training for self defense."

Training with the Project - Jeremy Luchau

"I tell people I train Rocky style and they don't believe me" says Jeremy Luchau, "Some times it gets up to 110 degrees in here" talking about the Barn where he trains. The Barn is simple; bags, concrete, sweat and pain . No AC, no fancy stands, no fancy lights just an old-fashioned gym where you can smell the workouts. On the day that I visited the barn outside the temperature read 92 meaning inside the barn was around 98; hot and humid.

Showdown In The Valley - Phil The Pain Collins

Phil looked crisp working the pads with Parga and says the Rhino should not be taking him lightly. Collins insisted we quoted him saying, “The Rhino said he was going to give me a Central Valley ass-whooping but Merced is closer to being the center of the Valley so I will be giving him the ass-whooping.”


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