Jesse Finney Talks About H.I.T Squad Purchase & The Gym’s Future
Jesse Finney Talks About H.I.T Squad Purchase & The Gym’s Future
MMA Access: Jesse Finney Talks About H.I.T Squad Purchase & The Gym’s Future
Great Audio Interview with Jesse Finney -
The Official Radio Partner of PunchDrunkGamer, Takedown Wrestling Media’s Scott Casber talked to Jesse Finney, owner of Finney’s MMA about his recent acquisition of Matt Hughes H.I.T. Squad gym in Granite City, Illinois.
Representatives from H.I.T. Squad, one of the most recognized and respected mixed martial arts training facilities in the industry, announced that they are under new ownership. The Granite City, Illinois MMA training facility is now officially known as "Finney's HIT Squad."
According to gym representatives, Jesse Finney now owns the facility. Finney also owns Finney's MMA; another St. Louis based mixed martial arts gym known for producing top-level contenders. As a result of the strategic change in ownership, the HIT Squad has emerged stronger than ever.
Jesse Finney had this to say, ""We are very excited about working with Matt Hughes, Marc Fiore, and Kyle Watson. The H.I.T. Squad (now Finney's HIT Squad) is already considered one of the top MMA gyms in the world. Our goal is to make it THE top MMA gym. We have already begun making improvements to both training facilities, improvements that will ultimately generate bigger and better opportunities for our fighters as we evolve."
A full size competition cage has been installed in Finney's HIT Squad facility as a result of the new ownership, and they have already begun implementing the Shamrock Fighter Development System (SDS). The system mirrors that of Major League Baseball, where players start out in a development league and work their way up based on their skills and performance.
Amateur fighters start out competing for credible local promotions such as Shamrock MMA. If you're a top-level professional fighter, Finney's has affiliations with nationally recognized promotions such as Shark Fights, Bellator, Strikeforce and the UFC.
Although ownership has changed hands, UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes will continue to train at the facility and the gyms well-established coaching staff will remain intact. According to H.I.T. Squad coach Marc Fiore, "I fully support the change in ownership and look forward to working with Finney and his team. This is a positive change that will generate new opportunities for the gym and make the HIT Squad brand even stronger. The new build out has added value to the facility and our stable of fighters has already increased from 40 to 80. We are all very excited about the direction the gym is going."
Finney's MMA and Finney's HIT Squad collectively offer one of the most comprehensive, well-rounded, training programs in the industry. Fighters at both amateur and professional levels have access to everything they need to advance their careers, from top-of-the-line equipment and unparalleled training, to housing and fight management. Both facilities offer on-site and off -site housing for members of the fight team, a highly sought after amenity that most MMA gyms do not offer. Fighters associated with the gyms also receive top-level representation through Elite MMA Management.
Both 20,000 square foot state-of-the-art facilities cater to professional fighters, as well as the general public. The superior instructors, all experts in their respective disciplines, teach men, women and children of all skill levels. The combined coaching staff has more name recognition and experience than any other team assembled in the Midwest. Classes are offered in boxing, kickboxing, muay thai, jiu-jitsu, mixed martial arts, wrestling, and sports conditioning. Whether a member joins to increase their fitness level, learn self-defense, or to hone their fighting skills, both Finney's MMA and Finney's HIT Squad offer superior instruction.
West Virginia becomes 45th U.S. state to regulate MMA
With overwhelming votes in favor of the move, West Virginia is now the 45th U.S. state to regulate mixed martial arts.
After it recently passed the West Virginia legislation, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin recently signed the bill into effect.
Only three state athletic commissions (New York, Connecticut and Vermont) currently don't regulate MMA, and two states (Alaska and Wyoming) lack regulatory bodies to do so.
GSP Talks Shields, UFC 129, Strikeforce & Super-Fights
GSP Talks Shields, UFC 129, Strikeforce & Super-Fights
I don't usually post audio interview links but this is good. GSP is very confident but also very respectful of Jones & Silva.
The undisputed world welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre was recently a guest on PDG’s official radio partner Takedown Wrestling Radio with Scott Casber. GSP talks about training for Jake Shields, UFC 129 in Toronto, Jon Jones performance at UFC 128, Zuffa’s recent purchase of Strikeforce and the opportunities that will bring, trash talking in mixed martial arts and the regulation of MMA in New York.[
Rashad Evans and Jon Jones Head Up Paradise Warrior Retreat Seminar in N.Y.
The Paradise Warrior Retreat will be holding its next training camp at New York’s The Wat Gym. The training camp will feature five top MMA fighters and coaches in the world as instructors.
Former UFC light heavyweight champion and “The Ultimate Fighter” winner Rashad Evans is one of the fighter-instructors at the camp. The other is new UFC light heavyweight champion and 205-pound phenom Jon Jones (13-1).
NFL Lockout closes one door, opens another for UFC and MMA
Greed will imprison us all.
No one knows that better than the legions of National Football League (NFL) fans that are being held hostage right now by the owners and players inability to come to terms on an agreement regarding how to split the massive amount of revenue the league brings in each year.
They're also bickering over potential rule changes, whether or not to add a few games to each season, a rookie pay scale and many other labor disputes. All of these issues that have gone unresolved for far too long have led to the possibility of a work stoppage.
In short, by the time August rolls around this year, there may not be any professional football. But where one door closes, another one opens and there is always someone standing on the other side, waiting to walk through it.
Enter Dana White and his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).
Trainer: Jones vs. Evans matchup forcing "soul searching" at Jackson's, Grudge
When it comes to the impending fight between newly minted light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones and former champ Rashad Evans, trainer Greg Jackson is sticking to a long-held policy not to corner fighters against one another.
Other coaches are still figuring things out. It's admittedly an uncomfortable situation not only for Jackson but those who've worked with both fighters, or work with the Jackson team.
"Everybody's doing soul searching right now," Jackson today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Not long ago, Evans and Jones were meeting on the mats of Jackson's MMA academy in Albuquerque, N.M., as Evans prepared to face light-heavyweight champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua at UFC 128. When Evans hurt his knee in early February, Jones went in his place and dominated the Brazilian champion en route to a third-round TKO.
Jason Brilz ready for a fight against UNO Athletic Director Trev Albetrs
After three straight Division II wrestling titles University of Nebraska Omaha Athletic Director, Trev Alberts, has decided to cut the program. Alberts aletered the UNO wrestling team by telephone a meer hour after the team had won its third straight title...upon returning to the school there lockeroom had been padlocked, and they were escorted by security to clean out their lockers and peacefully leave the campus.
Assistant Coach Jason Brilz is ready for a fight with the former failed ESPN announcer and new University of Nebraska Omaha AD, Trev Alberts...
Babin looks at MMA, CFL during break from Titans
The NFL lockout has given players a chance to put their feet up and take it easy if they want.
Titans defensive end Jason Babin apparently is viewing it as an opportunity to cross things off his bucket list — or maybe even add to it.
He plans to begin mixed martial arts training in California, and if things go well he said he could enter MMA competitions. He's also scheduled a bear-hunting trip to Alaska next month.
Antonio Silva Calls Out Brock Lesnar, Wants to Send Him Back to Pro Wrestling
Antonio Silva is still fresh off the biggest win of his career, beating down long time top heavyweight, Fedor Emelianenko. Now, shortly after Zuffa bought Strikeforce, the #6 ranked heavyweight, wants to add another high-profile name to his resume. He talked to mmajunkie and called out former UFC heavyweight champion, Brock Lesnar:
"It excites me. The UFC is the No. 1 event on earth. The best fighters in the world are there. I would love to fight there. I'd love to fight Brock Lesnar and send him back to pro wrestling because I don't accept the fact that [he's] ranked No. 2."
"It's not personal; I don't know Brock. It's just professional. I fight for my family. I love to fight and I need to fight, so I'll fight any place and anybody."
"Hamill" named best feature film at Miami Film Festival
"Hamill," a feature film based on the life of UFC light heavyweight Matt Hamill, is now two-for-two.
The film picked up the Audience Award for Best Feature Film this past weekend at the Miami Film Festival. The honor comes four months after it captured the Breakthrough Film award at the 2010 AFI Film Festival in Los Angeles.
"These awards are further proof to show that this film can survive theatrically and break the mold," "Hamill" writer Eben Kostbar told MMAjunkie.com.
Bellator signs undefeated heavyweight prospect Blagoi Ivanov
The man best-known for defeating Fedor Emelianenko in a combat sambo match is coming to Bellator Fighting Championships.
Bellator officials today announced that Blagoi Ivanov has signed a multi-fight deal with the promotion and will soon fight for the first time in the U.S.
"Blagoi is a great signing for us at heavyweight," Bellator chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney stated in today's official release. "He brings an incredible sambo background to the cage and is developing his hands with some of the best in the business."
NY MMA bill overwhelmingly passes committee vote
New York Senate Bill 1707A, i.e. the bill to authorize mixed martial arts in New York, overwhelmingly passed the Senate Standing Committee on Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation, by a vote of 13-1 this morning.
If last year is any indication, the bill will now go straight to the full Senate for a vote.
The overwhelming support for the bill is a good sign and so is the fact that the bill is through the Tourism Committee this early in the legislative session, i.e. approximately three (3) months before the bill was referred out of the Tourism Committee last year.
Source: Kheder Allegedly Bolts from Bellator Weigh-Ins; Shockley In
According to a source close to the promotion, Kheder checked in at the Bellator 36 weigh-ins on Friday and then left while the undercard competitors were hitting the scales. Sherdog.com confirmed news of alleged Kheder's departure after MMA Junkie initially reported on the matter.
When it came time for the lightweight tournament competitor to stand and deliver, he was allegedly nowhere to be found. The official announcement during the live stream of the weigh-in was that the fighter was talking with commission officials and would step on the scale after the stream went off the air.
That plan apparently went out the window, as one member of the Bellator staff actually chased after Kheder when it was realized that he had exited the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium. Calls from the promotion to the lightweight's phone allegedly went unanswered.
Despite suspension, James Irvin meets Mamed Khalidov in KSW 15 headliner
Despite a failed drug test and one-year suspension, James Irvin is heading overseas to fight light-heavyweight champion Mamed Khalidov in the headliner of next week's KSW 15 event.
Officials today announced the title fight, which takes place March 19 in Warsaw, Poland.
Irvin recently was pulled from a Shark Fights 14 co-headliner and rematch with Houston Alexander due to his alleged used of the steroid epitrenbolone at December's Tachi Palace Fights 7 event.
Alexander hopes Irvin available for May Shark Fights show, will settle for "Kimbo"
Light heavyweight Houston Alexander hopes James Irvin gets a recent suspension for performance-enhancing drugs reduced from one year to six months, if only for one selfish reason.
So he can put his hands on "The Sandman."
But if Irvin doesn't get cleared to fight Alexander in May, as the Texas-based Shark Fights is now targeting, "The Assassin" has someone else in mind for his next fight: Kevin "Kimbo Slice" Ferguson.
Former WWE Superstar Dave Batista May Make MMA Debut in UK
MMAWeekly.com has learned through independent sources that the rumored MMA debut of former WWE wrestler David Batista looks likely to take place in May… but not on U.S. soil.
It has come to light that the main delay in his debut has been aligning his desire to make a professional MMA debut ahead of September, which is when the aspirational heavyweight fighter will begin shooting an undisclosed film project.
Alvarez vs. Curran official as Bellator 39 headliner, Saunders vs. Lee added
A title fight between lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez and season-two tourney winner Pat Curran will headline Bellator 39 on April 2.
Bellator Fighting Championships brass today officially announced the matchup, which was previously reported by MMAjunkie.com, as well as a non-tournament bout between Ben Saunders and Matt Lee.
Bellator 39 takes place April 2 at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn., and airs on MTV2. The fight card will also feature two semifinal contests in Bellator's season-four welterweight tournament.