Since this is my first blog here, I thought it might be wise to introduce myself to those who may not know me yet.
I grew up in England with two great passions; basketball and kickboxing. When I was 14-years-old (or thereabout), a friend roped me into going to a Muay Thai class with him. I liked it, but at the time, I was already playing basketball.
In fact, I was pretty good at basketball, so I joined the junior national team and we became junior national champions. I kept training in martial arts, but I was more attracted to basketball because it was a team sport. I liked hanging out with the guys after practice and traveling out of the country to compete.
Muay Thai would take a backseat for the next several years.
Eventually, my basketball career took off, and I went pro. I was even in the 2009 NBA draft. My main dream as a kid was to play basketball, and I did.
However, like all things, it couldn’t last forever, and I needed to find something else. That something else was kickboxing.
I had continued practicing it in my off time over the years, but I wasn’t constant or serious about it. Now that my basketball career aspirations were over, I focused back in the discipline that I had trained for years in, and eventually had my first pro fight in 2011.
After my first kickboxing match, I broke my hand. It was a compound fracture, and it was bad. I was a big guy, fighting another big guy, and my lack of experience told me to just keep hitting him. That was a really bad idea, and I had to have a plate put in my hand as a result.
I was eager to fight again, so I took an MMA fight, and I ended up breaking the same hand. I obviously hadn’t learned much from the first fight, but after a second time, I learned a fair amount self-control.
My main training focus is set on MMA these days, and my goal is to never have a boring fight. There’s nothing worse than a guy who just wants to cuddle you. I’m not down with that. I’d rather have a woman want to cuddle me.
I was recently asked to come out and train with Daniel Cormier at AKA to help him prepare for his fight with Jon Jones, so I packed my bags and I moved to the United States. I have no plans of going back anytime soon, either. The American girls are too tempting.
Now, I split my time between AKA and Dethrone and I fight for Glory Kickboxing with more MMA fights hopefully on the horizon.
Following a lot of back-and-forth and ups-and-downs, I have found what I love doing. I’m living the dream again. It’s quite an accomplishment to get to do that once in a lifetime, but twice? It’s almost unheard of.
Stay tuned for my next blog where I will tell you a funny story about AKA and how different training in London is vs. training in the United States.