Thursday, July 31, 2014
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The Human Cockfighter Blog: Virtuous Contribution

How many 17-year-old boys do you know that train as often as five times daily to participate in work that pays them nary a dollar? I know one, and we call him, “The Badger”.

Brett Rounkles is a 17-year-old senior at Park Hill South High School in north Kansas City, Missouri. He is on the school’s wrestling team, trains at several gyms around the city with amateur and professional fighters, earns above average marks in school and competes as an amateur kickboxer.

Regulations disallow a man to compete in mixed martial arts before the age of 18. Last night (Saturday) Brett won his second amateur kickboxing bout at One Zero Eight Promotions in Kansas City, Missouri.

His opponent, a 23-year-old with a 4-inch height advantage and amateur MMA experience, was no contest for Brett, winning unanimously 30-25 on all three judges’ cards.

I was proud to be in his corner, along with our trainer, Ethan Benda, of FitInKC.com. Brett wore my brand, Hillbilly Fight Wear, with humility, professionalism and honor.

Jason Perrotta, 24, also won last night (Saturday) via doctor stoppage just two minutes into the first round. His opponent was no match for Jason’s athleticism, wrestling and overwhelmingly hard strikes.

Jason (3-1) has been training with us for just over a week at KC Premier Martial Arts & Fitness in Riverside. He is a tall 185er with a respectable Muay Thai background and gifted explosiveness. I look forward to working with him and being a part of his growth as a man and as a competitor.

One Zero Eight is the brain child of former amateur mixed martial artists, Lonnie Dodge and Dac Lam. They have been promoting amateur events in Kansas City for about four years at the Ararat Shrine Temple.

Last night (Saturday) showcased 13 fights, including three title bouts. Well over 700 people showed up to watch the action, a nice group of people that loved my apparel. Thank you to all of my new customers. I look forward to revisiting in the near future.

I have known both of these men for over six years. Dac produced a film several years back, “American Cage Fighter,” documenting Lonnie’s fight story along with UFC veteran, Rob Kimmons.

Lonnie, a respiratory therapist and former law enforcement officer, dropped nearly 80 pounds in physical preparation for his amateur MMA experience. Upon developing that discipline he has competed, promoted, and continues to contribute positively to the MMA community.

It is men like Dac and Lonnie building this sport from the ground level that contribute the most to our community. Discipline, honor and respect must be learned. Those virtues can not be taught.

The participation without pay of amateur cage fighters is the most selfless gift that can be given. The gift of unpaid labor for the sake of example and entertainment is truly virtuous.

Amateurs risk more, not less, than professionals. Jason Perrotta’s opponent suffered a broken radius and ulna last night. This 21-year-old man left it all in the cage for no pay, but earned everyone’s respect. We pray for his speedy recovery following his misfortune.

Next Saturday I will travel to Branson, Missouri for Ultimate Cage Fights at the Hilton Convention Center. Rob Kimmons, a KC native, will headline this event. As always I will carry my brand along for the ride.

Tommy Tran will serve as our host and we are appreciative of his hospitality. I feel so blessed to get another opportunity to watch Rob in person. I attended his contest with Joe Riggs in the WEC over six years ago.

Since then he has competed in nearly every mid and upper-level promotion, including seven bouts inside the Octagon with the UFC. Rob is a true warrior and a pleasure to watch work.

If you are in the area and want to get away from the table following Thanksgiving, then come out and enjoy the show. It’s good for the community.

Brian Imes’ “The Human Cockfighter Blog” takes readers inside the mind and life of a pro mixed martial arts fighter. It is part of ProMMAnow.com’s ongoing series of content written by individuals involved in the MMA industry. Follow Brian online at Twitter @HillbillyFightW and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/brian.imes1.

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