Clash in the Cage

As an extreme sports fan I am always looking for different venues to get my fix. Sometimes living in the Jackson area it is hard to find events besides just football and basketball.

My search efforts have been fruitful this particular time. On September 18th at the Wahabi Shriners in Byram a local promotion team is hosting their 20th MMA event.

For those who are not familiar with MMA it is a combat sport like boxing. Unlike boxing fighters can use their feet, hands and take their opponents to the ground.

I was slow to come around to MMA being a big boxing fan but I am coming around. If you have never seen it the closest I can describe it is like the fight seen in the 1980's movie Mad Max Beyond Thunder Dome.

You know the scene with the cage and the crowd chanting "two men enter, one man leaves" except for the one my leaves part. MMA puts two men in a cage and lets them fight it out in a controlled situation.

There are three ways to win a fight. The first is by submission, making the other man quit, like Roberto Duran did when he cried "No Mas" against "Sugar" Ray Leonard.

A fighter can also win by a knockout or by a technical knockout or TKO in which the referee stops the fight. The fight can also come down to points by judges if the fighters cannot when accomplish a victory by one of the ways stated above.

Local promotion, Psychout Promotions is getting very good at finding fighters. They have had two fighters move on to the major promotion known as Ultimate Fighting Championship or UFC.

One fighter to their way to the big time was Jeremiah Riggs who barely missed out on the Spike television program Ultimate Fighter: Team Rampage vs. Team Forrest. Riggs would later go on to his softer side by crying on the VH1 reality show Daisy of Love.

Local sports star Wes Shivers who stared at Brandon High School before he went to Hinds Community College. Shivers would leave HCC and play for Mississippi State and drafted by the Tennessee Titans of the NFL.

After his football career was over Shivers went on to the world of MMA fighting. Unlike Riggs, Shivers did compete on the Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights. He lost in his opening round match to James McSweeney by judge's decision.

This newest event has all the right stuff that would attract a sports fan and fight fans. Pyschout Promotions presidents Brian McGuire and Forrest Welker have named this event Clash in the Cage.

The name alone has me salivating in expectation of this event. As I dig deep I find that unlike boxing were you might get three to four fights, matchmaker Jay Duvall is giving fans 16 fights.

There will be 12 amateur fights to go along with four professional fights. Dig a little deeper and two of the four professional fights are title weight bouts.

The 145 title bout features Paul McAdams fighting Tim Galluzzi. Nothing makes a fight night better than when two fighters dislike each other, whether it is real or just imagined.

Fans will get a chance to see two fighters who despise each other when John "Hollywood" Harris takes on Trey "Smash" Brown. Even better than when two fighters hating each other is when they have great nicknames like "Hollywood" and "Smash".

Hollywood Harris and Smash Brown will clash over the 155 lbs title. With bad blood between these fighters stems from Brown backed out of the original fight with Harris.

At the time Brown was the 155 or lightweight title holder but he lost of the belt after it came to light that he not hurt when he backed out of the fight. Brown had his title stripped and Harris as the number one contender to Harris received the title.

Now Harris is the champion and if Brown wants his title back he will have to step into the cage to take it from him. Both fighters dislike each other and that should be a plus for the fans.

What makes this whole event worthwhile is the price. Psychout Promotions is only charging $25 dollars a ticket which breaks down to a little over a $1.50 a fight.

In these tough economic times that is a real bargain. Fights will be three/three minute rounds for amateurs, three/five minute rounds for professionals, and five/five minutes rounds for the two title fights.

Doors will open at 6pm and fights will begin at 7pm. I am getting excited just thinking about it.

Bryan Flynn is a lifelong Mississippi native who resides in Richland. When not working for the JFP, he writes a national blog, playtowinthegame.com. He lives with his wife and their four cats.


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