Dr. Jason Park - Podcast Episode 13

I have the pleasure of introducing you to Dr. Jason Park on this episode of the podcast. There are absolutely no words to justify his level of practical combat experience, education and training as a Physical Therapist and Board-certified Sports Clinical Specialist.

Duration 56:55

“Muay Thai has led me to meet people of all creeds, races, nationalities, ages, genders and it is amazing”, he says. “It transfers past all those other barriers. You can not speak a word of the same language but you can still learn from each other.”

Dr. Jason Park says, “One of my big goals is to spread striking and Muay Thai in particular as the thesis of martial arts.” He is a physical therapist, Board-certified Sports Clinical Specialist, Sports Performance consultant and Muay Thai coach.

I honestly hope that there is a Dr. Jason Park facility one day because Jason is truly a multi-talented human. He works with clients on strength and conditioning for fighters, rehabbing injuries, and physical therapy all over the country, and (as you’ll hear on today’s show) he is a Muay Thai expert.

Jason grew up doing Muay Thai in LA, and then he spent 6 years fighting and a year training in Thailand. One of my favorite parts about him is that he knows a TON about the body from a scientific perspective, AND he has an incredible amount of Muay Thai training experience. I think this makes his ideas and advice extremely valuable. Sawasdee krap.

Dr. Jason Park is a physical therapist, Board-certified Sports Clinical Specialist, Muay Thai, Sports Performance and Strength and Conditioning coach.

Follow Dr. Jason Park at these links:
Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | CoolHeart Performance

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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Alex Von Have - Podcast Episode 12

Welcome to a very special episode of the podcast featuring one of the most courageous people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting on the mat.  I am privileged and excited to introduce you to my friend Alex.

Duration: 1:01:55

I was lucky enough to make friends with a new face that I began to see sweating and gasping regularly around the gym at Muay Thai School USA in North Hollywood, CA.  Muay Thai is an intimate sport and everyone who enters a training area enters a sanctuary, so it wasn’t long before I said hello to Alex and we were soon laughing and sharing stories.  It wasn’t long before I came to know that Alex is a transgendered female to male Muay Thai student.  I’m really glad that I got to meet Alex before I met “transgender-Alex” because he’s still the same Alex even after sharing bits of his awesome story. So Alex and I talked more, and trained more and talked more until I invited him to chat with me on the Teep This Podcast.  Why did I invite him onto the podcast?  Because I was both moved by and curious about Alex the more we hung out.

As a quick refresher in the event you may not know; I started this podcast in 2016 as a means by which to educate myself on the sport and culture of Muay Thai.  Since it’s inception, hosting and producing this podcast has become one of the most informative vehicles in my life today and although it’s a ton of work and I find maintaining the podcast episodes a challenge, the reward for sharing the human stories that I encounter along the way far outweighs the required effort.

Alex Von Have is a genius of creativity, courage and experience.  At only 25 years of age, he has seen and experienced more than many of the people that I know today.  I look forward to sharing more with my friend Alex and growing together in our practice and love of Muay Thai.  Please enjoy the podcast episode, do share it with your friends and loved ones and do keep an open mind and open heart because in my humble opinion, the most powerful thing that we can ever do individually is to Be The Change that we wish to see in our world.  Alex says that whatever we do, we should “…do it explicitly.”  So let us stand firm in harmony with all living things and look upon one another with compassion and above all else, be grateful for each breath that we are blessed to enjoy.  Sawasdee krap.

Alex Von Have (pronounced: von, há-vah) is a motion picture visual effects artist, illustrator and Muay Thai student.  He is also very likely to be the first ever transgendered individual to step into a Muay Thai ring.

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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Richard "Maximus" Abraham - Podcast Episode 11

Being a Chicago native myself, it was a no-brainer and an outright honor to pop in for an evening of intense Muay Thai training at Maximus Muay Thai just outside the city limits in Itasca, Illinois; to share an intimate conversation with one of the hardest working soldiers in this here fight game Richard “Maximus” Abraham.

Duration 36:55

“I think my day job has a lot to do with my mentality,” he says. “That, and some of the things I have experienced in life. I have been through some tough times. I lost my son, my first son, he was five years old, and I lost my mom at an early age. Then grandparents, aunts and uncles…

Abraham is a tombstone engraver by trade and spends his working days in cemeteries around Chicago. It is a family business, dating back to his grandparents and their involvement in the crafting of gravestones and monuments. “This life is short, it really is. I truly believe life is a blessing and we need to get as far as we can get and enjoy it as much as we can. When our time is up it’s up and there’s nothing we can do. There’s a saying I like, ‘We only get one life – but if you live it right, once is enough’. Becoming welterweight champion is Abraham’s goal in the sport, as he freely admits. But he wants to do it for himself, rather than any fame or recognition. He is a humble man – as evidenced by the words he wants on his own tombstone. “I want just a big lion, sculpted, and I want it to say nothing more than “Here lies an unknown soldier,” he smiles. “Why? Because I believe I am a soldier of god. I don’t need recognition and stuff like that. I just go about being me and taking care of the people I love, that’s all I need.” Abraham has six children with his wife. Early in 2016 she was pregnant with twin girls. They became due earlier than expected, causing Abraham to cancel a fight booked in Thailand. His girls were born healthy and a few days later he got a call-up for GLORY 27 CHICAGO. “Everything happens for a reason!” he beams.

Richard “Maximus” Abraham rocking that TEEP THIS “Black-On-Black” Fighter Crewneck when it was newly released at the 2018 TBA Classic Muay Thai World Expo in Des Moines, IA.

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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"The Immortal" Regian Eersel - Podcast Episode 10

I’ve been a fan of my guest on this installment of the podcast since first seeing him compete on Lion Fight back in 2016.  Please enjoy this special video version of the podcast as I connect with my guest via Skype from across the ocean in Amsterdam, the world capital of Kickboxing.

Duration: 43 minutes

Representing the famed Sityodtong Amsterdam Muay Thai camp is Regian Eersel, who has made a name for himself as a Lion Fight Super Middleweight World Champion and an MFC Kickboxing World Champion.

Regian is originally from Suriname, a former Dutch colony in South America, but his family moved to Amsterdam when he was 4 years old for better opportunities. He first began his martial arts journey by training in taekwondo at the age of 8, having taken up the art for self-defense and to burn off extra energy. After experiencing success in in taekwondo competition, as well as in amateur kickboxing, Regian decided to turn professional, and has since experienced an incredible record of success across the globe. Renowned for making full use of his long limbs to land kicks and flying knees, “The Immortal” has built a reputation as an incredibly exciting talent to watch, and now looks to entertain the world in ONE Super Series.

Regian Eersel pictured here alongside Sityodtong Amsterdam fight team mate and friend Sergio Wielzen

Check out our friends just north of us in Canada on all that’s happening in their exploding Muay Thai scene by tuning into The Bloody Ballet Podcast

Hosted by Ryan Mckinnon

This episode features my conversation with one of the most feared young fighters making waves around the planet in both the Muay Thai and Kickboxing circuits.  Regian Eersel aka The Immortal is the current Lion Fight Super Middleweight World Champion and I spent some time with Regian and his trainer Paul learning more about what it feels like to be a world champion at only 24 years of age and how the American Muay Thai scene appears from his perspective in Holland, the world capital of Kickboxing.  We get into “the Dutch style” and is it as hardcore as everyone says it is?  We go deep behind some of his most memorable fights and experience some of those fights from his perspective inside the mayhem.  Tune in for Episode 11 with special guest Glory world champion, gym owner, entrepreneur and father of five Richard “Maximus” Abraham from Maxiumus Muay Thai in Itasca, IL.  Live well, love much, laugh often and train hard.  Sawasdee krap.

photo by Bennie Palmore | www.benniepalmore.com

Lion Fight 50 was an immeasurable gift as I have been a fan of Lion Fight since first ever coming into contact with The Art of Eight Limbs.

Regian and his trainer Kru Paul landed in Los Angeles for what became yet another successful title defense for the young world champion.  I was honored to photograph Regian and other fighters on the night backstage as they wrapped up, warmed up and prepared to do battle for the fans and the cameras.  Super photographer Bennie Palmore blessed me with the group shot above where I’m flanking the group on the left side of the image.  I was an honorary member of Regian’s Team Immortal that night.  It was my very first time cornering a fighter ringside.  Image that.  The first time ever in such a scenario and it happens alongside one of the best fighters on the planet at the top of his game on a nationally televised fight promotion.  Terms like “thankful and appreciative” simply fail to justly express my gratitude.  This is a wonderful sport that continues to give back the more and more I give to her.  If only life were as kind.

Follow Regian Eersel on Instagram @koolhydraat and his fight team @SityodtongAmsterdam Regian is still polishing his Lion Fight Super Middleweight belt on the regular and is making waves on the ONE Championship world combat stage.  Join me for my next conversation with Glory Kickboxing world champion, gym owner, entrepreneur and father of five Richard “Maximus” Abraham of Maximus Muay Thai in Itasca, IL.

Go HERE for the full set of images from Lion Fight 50 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Nov. 03, 2018.

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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Iron Joe Gogo - Podcast Episode 9

Welcome to the very first podcast episode of the new year!  2019 promises to be yet another pivotal year for Muay Thai in America and we’ve got plenty already in the can ready to share!  Jump into my conversation here with powerhouse fighter, personal trainer and proud Chamorro Iron Joe Gogo from San Diego, CA.

Duration: 1:13:43

Joe Gogo was born and raised on the small, beautiful island of Guam. He graduated from the University of Hawaii with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology and Rehabilitative science. Joe was an athlete his whole life and grew up playing football, basketball, and rugby. Joe is currently a 4 time professional fighting champion with 3 titles in Muay Thai and 1 in MMA. Joe “The Iron Assassin” Gogo has traveled to Hawaii, Los Angeles, Mexico, China and Las Vegas for fights, as well as competed in San Diego. Joe uses fighting to inspire the uninspired and loves to pave the road for young athletes through being a positive role model. His goal as a fighter and trainer is to influence others to be the best version of themselves!  Joe is currently based out of Art of Eight Training and Fitness Center in San Diego, CA. (Aye-Ohh-Eight!!!)

In this episode Joe and I get way into the behind the scenes of some of his epic fights against top tier opponents including Travis Clay and Eric Luna. I learned all about what it is to be Chomorro and we explored just how different Muay Thai fighting is from other fight sports.  We talked about life, self-awareness, tradition and how knowing ones self and honoring that knowledge can order your steps toward living a fulfilled life.

Joe Gogo’s next fight is slated to take place in the fight capital of the world Las Vegas, Nevada; at Triumphant 6.  Get tickets and information here.

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Triumphant 3 - American Muay Thai On The Rise

Words: Charles Little II | Images: Gabriel Torres, Ryan Gentry and Fabian Lagunas (West Coast Muay Thai)

Last month I was fortunate enough to be on hand for a momentous evening of top level Muay Thai as the sport took another huge leap forward in the USA.

Triumphant 3 took place on Feb. 25, 2018 in downtown Oakland, CA and was the very first Muay Thai fight event to be broadcast on UFC Fightpass.  With the absence of Lion Fight Promotions on AXS TV and the obscurity of WCK Full Rules Muay Thai broadcasts on Fox Sports Prime Ticket, bearing witness to muay thai fights in the US has up to now been exclusively via local area promotions and fan videos on social media.  But that’s all changed now with UFC Fightpass offering not only Triumphant Combat Sports Muay Thai Series (Oakland, CA) to their subscribers 24/7; but Friday Night Fights (New York, NY) is also a featured item on the UFC Fightpass menu.  For the first time in the USA fight fans of all sorts can witness proper muay thai from anywhere at anytime and that makes for an interesting time for the sport indeed.

Triumphant 3 held true to the origins of the sport and the level of competition that American Muay Thai has to offer by featuring a stacked card of seasoned professional fighters, hungry amateur nak muays, two top-level female bouts and two championship belts on the line.

The world of American Muay Thai was on hand at Triumphant 3 and the fighters delivered what everyone came to see.  MMA veteran Anthony Njokuani took home an inaugural Middleweight Belt and Genah Fabian (CSA, Dublin CA) defeated Charmaine Tweet by KO in the second round with a beautiful head kick rendering Tweet unable to continue.  Janet Todd and Yumiko Kawano met in a return visit that promised to be a score-settler after Kawano defeated Todd in a competitive close fight last year.  This also being the professional debut fight for each of them added that much more to the gravity of this matchup.  Todd and Kawano went at it round after round, each matching one another’s technique, aggressiveness and defense.  Janet’s teep kick and right cross were stand out on the night but Kawano’s elbow attack and consistent forward pressure ultimately resulted in a split decision victory for Kawano.

One of my favorite fighters to track and witness is the explosive and determined Joe Gogo.

They call him the Iron Assassin, or “Iron Joe Gogo” and as a lifelong fan of Iron Mike Tyson himself, the moniker is appropriately fitting.  I was stoked to see Gogo in the ring again and especially at this event with such a high profile.  I wasn’t however familiar with his opponent Eric Luna but after this fight I will never forget his name.  Folks around the ring talked Luna up and I got the gas face a few times for not knowing anything about him. “You’re in for a treat” I was told and yeah, witnessing Luna’s muay thai against the onslaught brought on by Gogo was memorable to say the least.  Luna managed his distance consistently and kept Gogo at bay and out of striking range with an effective long guard, stiff arm defense, stepping off-line and varying up his strikes between levels and targets.  Do yourself a favor and go see the fight here as it’s as interesting to analyze as it is entertaining to watch.  Eric Luna edged out Joe Gogo in a victory by split decision.  The two men left it all in the ring and left the crowd on their feet cheering with a display of push ups after the final bell and a “man-kiss” which can only be earned after going to war which is exactly what Luna and Gogo accomplished.

Triumphant 3 “Fight of the Night” accolade was fittingly awarded to the unforgettable contest between Nick “The Goldenboy” Chasteen and Asa Tenpow; which to be honest, was the particular fight that let me know it was time to buy a plane ticket to Oakland.

If  you’re not already in the know, Nick Chasteen is without a doubt one of my favorite fighters and one whom I’ve been after to guest on the Teep This Podcast for a good long while now.  Asa Tenpow spoke to me at length on the podcast a while back and the opportunity to see them both in the flesh and in the ring was awe-inspiring and basically, all kinds of amazing.  All of the words in the world written here cannot do justice to the focus and intensity that Chasteen brought with him into the ring.  It was an exciting juxtaposition to Tenpow’s almost playful and kind of taunting demeanor.  Chasteen stared down the barrel at Tenpow, while Asa looked up slightly at Chasteen with a bit of a smile as to say “Okay then, yeah let’s dance a little here”.  So they got em up and got it on like nobody’s business.  Chasteen was visibly larger than Tenpow and maintained an aggressive attack thru the duration of the fight.  Asa Tenpow leaned into his lifelong martial arts training and countered Chasteen’s attacks followed by illusive strikes of his own.  Angles and elbows were among the inventory of weapons and tactics Tenpow employed along with a sharp right hand that found it’s target enough earn to Tenpow the W over Chasteen.  The two men shook the building with their performances and Tenpow left the audience with an inspiring post fight monologue worthy of repeat mention.

Watch the fight here  on Triumphant Combat Sports’ YouTube channel or stream these fights 24/7 via UFC Fightpass

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Travis Clay - Podcast Episode 8

In this, the second podcast episode of 2018, I caught up with one of my long-time favorite American Nak Muays Travis Clay from Sitan Gym (Arizona).  I’ve been tracking this quiet killer since witnessing him defeat UFC veteran Jared Papazian at Lion Fight 27 back in January of 2016.

Duration: 52 Minutes

Travis sat down with me to chat about all things Muay Thai fresh from weighing-in for his contest the very following night (Friday, March 02) with Ognjen Topic for Friday Night Fights (New York)

…which is slated to be the first full rules muay thai fight in America to be streamed live over the internet.  It’s a glorious time for Muay Thai in the states and Travis and I discussed some of his past fights in particular detail.  Including his pro debut against UFC veteran Jared Papazian at Lion Fight 26; his stunning fight with Julio “The Don” Peña and his epic WBC title fight last year with Joe Gogo in San Diego for Dennis Warner’s WCK Full Rules Muay Thai promotion. Travis went deep into his muay thai technique, he let us inside his head before during and after the aforementioned fights as well as discussed the nuanced differences between “Muay Thai” and “Kickboxing” and where Muay Thai may seemingly be headed in the USA over the next few years.  Sit back and take in the interview and enjoy. I interviewed and cut this podcast from my office and Travis spoke to me from his hotel room in New York before turning in to rest up for his fight the very next day.  Thanks for tuning in to the podcast.

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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Sergio Wielzen - Podcast Episode 7

Welcome to the first podcast of 2018 with a truly rare opportunity to hear from a true veteran of Muay Thai and kickboxing from beyond our borders here in the good ‘ole US of A!

Duration: 32 Minutes

I’m excited beyond words to start the new year with this podcast episode as my guest today was actually the inspiration for the very first Teep This Podcast episode ever! Yes, Sergio Wielzen is one of my favorite Muay Thai fighters (my goodness…who’s NOT one of my favorite Muay Thai fighters???) and it was an image of Sergio delivering a teep to the face of Arthur Meyer at Lion Fight 30 that spawned the first episode with my first guest, Charlie Clark, the photographer who shot that image pictured here below.

Sergio ‘Kleintje’ Wielzen (born November 1, 1987 in Suriname) lives in Amsterdam and fights out of Sityodtong Muay Thai.

Arthur Meyer defends the teep from current Lion Fight Lightweight Champion Sergio Wielzen (The Netherlands) | photo © Tengu Photography

America is a really big place!  We’ve got lots of space, lots of people and lots of everything and that includes sports!  Lots of sports to watch and keep up with, which can be difficult in a bustling society like ours (please don’t get me started…).  When you fall in love with a sport like Muay Thai and the rest of the country is talking about football and basketball, you have to go digging to find your #8Limbs fix.  But this is where television comes in and Lion Fight Promotions.  Without promoters like Dennis Warner’s WCK Full Rules Muay Thai and Lion Fight Promotions I would surely have a much thinner list of favorite Muay Thai fighters.  It was AXS.TV broadcasting Lion Fight Muay Thai contests straight into my living room that put superstars like Sergio Wielzen on my radar.

I was on the edge of my seat waiting to watch Sergio defend his Lion Fight Lightweight belt against “Mr. Lightning” Lerdsila (Thailand) and to my dismay…no Sergio Wielzen!?!?

It wasn’t long before I finally addressed this mystery with the man himself and asked Sergio just what was the story behind his Lion Fight 36 no show.  Sergio breaks down the behind the scenes of that situation, while giving us privileged information that only someone in his position could share.  We talk about Lion Fight Promotions, some of his early fighting days on other European promotions and just how American Muay Thai might appear to those looking on outside of our borders here.  We talk training, gyms, coming back to the USA and about what the future may hold for Sergio and for Muay Thai in America.  Hopefully that title defense is still something to look forward to; but for my money, any excuse that gets Sergio Wielzen back in his boxing gloves and back on US soil to fight in them is a damn good excuse.

Subscribe to the Teep This Podcast via: iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and Google Play (Android). Don’t forget to give the podcast a review and share share share! For questions, suggestions or requests send an email to: yo@teepthis.com

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WCK Cali 23: The Mega Show

Muaythai is truly a special sport surrounded by a community of committed athletes, artisans and advocates.  Last night that community converged at the Los Angeles Marriott in Burbank, CA courtesy of Dennis Warner’s WCK Full Rules Muay Thai promotion and Cali Muay Thai Series for an invigorating night of amateur and professional muay thai bouts loaded with style, heart, a little blood and plenty of KOs.  Thank you to all of the fighters who left it all in the ring, the coaches, trainers, doctors, paramedics, ring officials, judges, gyms, training partners, families, friends and fight fans who made Cali 23: The Mega Show an unforgettable night of Muaythai.

The First Bout of the Night

I am a huge fan of both the gyms who represented the night’s initial fighters.  Kim Bui of Muay Thai America Gym won a Unanimous Decision over Natthanicha “Sunny” Kudsanoi of Muay Thai School USA after three exciting rounds.  It was an honor to witness as both fighters produced their fare share of Ooohs and Ooooheeeehs from the packed house.  In this image Kru Dan Mayid gives his fighter Sunny Kudsanoi all that he has as he does day in and day out on either side of the ropes.  I’m always enamored by that which transpires between trainer and fighter during the contest.  It’s undoubtedly an exchange that my camera is always blessed to find.

A Night Packed With KOs

Patrick Guzman of Primal MMA won over Chris Guerra in a stunning first round KKO by shin kick to the head.  The Primal MMA family came out in massive support and albeit the celebration for Patrick’s victory was intense, so too was the concern for Chris Guerra’s well being as paramedics carried him out secured to a stretcher.  We were all happy to soon learn that Guerra recovered fully.

Other KOs included another stunning KKO by ring veteran Adam Rothweiler over a game and aggressive Yumi Horuichi from Japan (Rnd 2); Brandol Mendoza (Sityodtong LA) over Raj Patel (Rnd 3); Niko Ruiz over Ghiath Daker (Rnd 2), Christopher Bonilla over Oscar Moller (Rnd 1).  The Oscar Moller KO was interesting to watch as I’ve witnessed Moller’s previous fights and he’s a fierce combatant with excellent technique and heart.  Bonilla seemingly took advantage of Moller’s low hands and it cost Moller the fight early on.  I for one will be looking to learn more about that one especially from Moller’s side if he’s ever down to share any of the experience in an interview.

Brandol Mendoza and Raj Patel went to war from the first bell.  Everyone was on their feet during that entire contest.  A KO was eminent with the pace and ferocity at which that fight progressed.  Mad respect to both these warriors for their excellent Muaythai and intensity in the ring.  It was truly an honor to witness.

Another one of my favorite fighters April Vergara (Boxing Works, Torrance CA) had her hands full with Ashley Thiner.  This was my first time learning of Thiner but her and April went at it seriously as well.  In this image Boxing Works head coach Bryan Popejoy leads the instruction for Vergara between rounds.  Congrats to April Vergara and the Boxing Works family on her win by Split Decision and mad respect to both these fighters for an unforgettable performance.

It's Not Boxing or MMA - This Is Muay Thai

Since my introduction to Muaythai in 2015, I (among many others) have been a devoted fan of Brian “Bad Boy” Del Rosario (Saekson Muay Thai).  I first saw his opponent Antonio Arango when he fought earlier this year at WCK Ultimate Conquest card in San Diego.  I knew this one was gonna be “a cracker”; and boy was it ever.  These two went for broke but after 5 rounds it was Del Rosario over Arango by Unanimous Decision.

Sovenkasa Som aka: The Prince of Cambodia (Long Beach Khmer Kickboxing & Team Victory Muay Thai) is one of the slickest practitioners of the Art of Eight Limbs you’ll find and has been making a name for himself as well as making his debut recently as a pro.  What I enjoyed the most from Som in this fight against an aggressive and game James Acosta (Systems Training Center) was Som’s composure.  This fight was Acosta’s professional debut so he showed up throwing with bad intentions and connected effectively on Som.  It just wasn’t enough as Som’s movement, positioning, defense and arsenal of strikes won whom some like to call “Baby Buakaw” the W by Majority Decision.

My man Travis Garlits (Muay Thai School USA) ended up in a Split Draw with the young prodigy Gianna Carlo Di Chiara Vasquez.  Gianna was familiar to me when I saw him moving around the ring but I still can’t actually place where I’ve seen him before.  Perhaps I caught him fighting MMA on another occasion?  But, nonetheless, this kid showed up to fight; and if you know anything at all then you know that the D.T.S. behind Travis Garlits’ name stands for Down To Scrap – and scrap they did!  They kept it moving, got a little nasty with it and kept the room on their feet for four non-stop rounds.  Garlits seemed to be a bit in his head and rightfully so as his better half Ms. Ana Flores stood close by as pregnant as she could ever be!  Both Garlits and Som are expecting daddies and there’s a whole world of adoring fans who can’t wait to help them welcome their gifts into this dimension.  A Split Draw.  I mean, can a fight be scored any closer than that?  Great fight boys!

The Stars Were Out Tonight

Muaythai’s best showed up to The Mega Show on both sides of the ropes.  Fight fans were treated to a headline match up between Damien Earley and Josh “El Gato” Aragon (Sityodtong LA).  Nick “The Golden Boy” Chasteen was in his brother’s corner as expected and it’s always great to see my favorite fighters in the house like Chasteen! World Champion fighters were also spotted around including Artem “The Russian Experiment” Sheroshkin, Chidi Njokuani and Chuck Liddell; as well as West Coast Muay Thai founder Galen Okazaki, illustrator and apparel designer Jack Jittsu (Satrawoot); legendary boxing preservationist and fight photographer Marty Rockatansky; and living legend Kru Saekson Janjira.  Mad respect to one and all.

A mad thanks to Richard De La Cruz for his tireless efforts behind the scenes at WCK Full Rules Muay Thai; and The Voice In The Ring Chris Gregory for leading us all through each and every memorable WCK fight night.

Enjoy the full collection of high resolution photographs from this fight and other fights in the Photographs section of this website.

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USA Against The World - Podcast Episode 6

Janet Todd performs the traditional WaiKru before representing the USA at the 2017 IFMA World Championships (Belarus, Minsk) photo taken by Lord K2 for IFMA

This month’s podcast is packed with muay thai fight news, reviews of recent WCK Cali Muay Thai Series fights; and conversations with two fighters who have represented the USA at the IFMA world championships the last two years in a row. Muay Thai debuts at the World Games in Poland in July and the USMF is changing the game here at home in order to curate the best fighters from the USA to compete against international opponents and place American Muay Thai among the best in the world rankings.

Episode Duration: 1:18:20


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Episode Part One

Duration 40:44

In the first half of the episode I spoke with pro fighter, gym owner and youth muay thai trainer Asa Tenpow (Florida Kickboxing Academy – West Palm Beach, FL). Asa shared his martial arts life journey with me from studying taekwondoe and kung fu from as early as the age of 5; to first finding Muay Thai training with Kru Alan Bowonthamachakr.  Although Asa is a professional fighter he still makes it a priority to compete in international muay thai tournaments.  He’s represented the USA two years in a row at the IFMA World Championships and he makes teaching muay thai to young children one of highest priorities.  Okay, you’re still not sold?  He also trains and corners young aspiring amateur fighters on their own journey seeking the best within themselves through the sport of Muay Thai.  Take a gander at the series of images below to get a peek inside the world of a world class martial artist, a world class athlete and world class individual.

Asa Tenpow is a 27 year old, professional muay thai fighter living in West Palm Beach, FL.

I first became aware of Asa Tenpow after witnessing his unforgettable pro debut at Lion Fight 28 against Turan Hasinov.

The amazement just continued with his second Lion Fight appearance against Bryce Lawrence. Asa’s fight was technical, calm and controlled and I found myself quietly hoping that Bryce Lawrence would just take a knee before suffering any irreparable damage.  But Asa Tenpow is as much a gentleman as he is a warrior and I picked up on the notion that Tenpow was placing his shots to avoid seriously injuring Lawrence; whom come to find out, is also somewhat of a friend.  Speaking of friends, it’s not long when you’re doing what you love before you run into someone else that loves doing it about as much as you do.  That seems to be the vibe between our USMF Team USA Muay Thai athletes and especially with Emilio Pineda and Asa Tenpow; pictured below during their recent trip to the 2017 IFMA World Championships in Belarus, Minsk.  Thanks a ton to photographer Igdalia Medina for sharing her beautiful Lion Fight images for display here at TeepThis.com.


Episode Part Two

Begins at: 41:49

In the second half of the episode I sat down with amateur muay thai fighter Janet Todd from Hermosa Beach, CA. Janet trains out of Boxing Works gym in Torrence, CA under coach Bryan Popejoy.  I’ve experienced nothing but praise and respect when coach Popejoy’s name enters the conversation and after witnessing the connection that he and Janet share, seeing the level of devotion he has for the sport and his fighters, it’s no wonder Janet is winning everywhere she decides to lace up her gloves these days.

Janet will do anything to further the sport of muay thai and we got way into topics as we spoke.  We talked about her home life and what it’s like to be married to your partner as well as to your passion.  Janet’s husband is her biggest fan and she has no problem giving credit where it’s due.

Janet Todd is an amateur muay thai fighter from Hermosa Beach, CA.
photo by  Jeff Dojillo for USMF

Janet shared her experiences competing abroad over the past few years at the coveted IFMA muay thai championship tournaments and took us right into this year’s recent trip to Belarus for the 2017 installment from which Janet came home with a Bronze medal.  She expressed her pride for her accomplishment but like any A-type-perfectionist she’s not yet satisfied with a Bronze medal and intends to return to international competition immediately in pursuit of big chunk of Gold tied to a fancy red white and blue ribbon.

After a loss in her final fight in Belarus, Janet Todd needed to erase the sting and did so by winning the Defiant WBC Tournament immediately following the IFMA World Championships.

Janet Todd wins her division at the Defiant WBC Tournament in Tacoma, WA (May 2017)

Janet is off to the World Games in Poland this summer for that very reason — the pursuit of a Gold Medal and the right to tell her reflection: “Hey you, you’re a world champion muay thai fighter!”  The USMF along with her sponsors West Coast Muay Thai and In Fight Style are right behind her giving her all the support they can gather.  TEEP THIS is a fan as well and I’ll do all I can to help Janet realize her dreams as this sport continues to help me identify and realize my own.

Take a look at a few of the images she shared  from her journey to Belarus and back which resulted in a bronze medal and custom shiny green belt that her hubby will have to make room to display somewhere in their home.

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