Date:Ā Friday- February 10, 2012
Time:Ā 9 pm ET / 6pm PT Ā (LIVE and FREE on HDNet)
Location:Ā Knoxville Civic Auditorium-Coliseum in Knoxville, TennesseeĀ ā U.S.A.
Main Fight Card:Ā (aired on HDNet)
- Drew Fickett vs. Jamie Varner
- Nicolae Cury vs. Corey Hill
- Heather Clark vs. Marianna Kheyfets
- Mikey Gomez vs. Josh Samman
- Brandon Sayles vs. TBA
- Stoney Hale vs. Dustin West
- Len Cook vs. Chris Wright
- Brandon Demastes vs. Scott Holtzman
- Drew Kennedy vs. Devan Plaisance
- Shane Matchette vs. Tyler Minton
pic above shows Carlo Prater (left) and Drew Fickett (right)
From Drew ‘Night Rider’ Fickett’s blog via Shine Fights:
Fighting is, well, a difficult thing to be a part of. And nerves are very much a part of that. Even with over fifty professional fights, I still find myself a bit nervous every time I head out to the cage or ring. Yet, I also feel at ease. There is a part of all of us, as human beings, that seems to give us a desire to fight. To me, itās not about incapacitating another man, though. Itās about simply seeing that when it comes to using your fists, your body, I am the superior man. Itās so much more mental than physical.
Heading into the Shine Fights Lightweight Grand Prix, my career had been on a downward spiral, one which my personal life seemed to be mirroring. I had won my last bout, but before that, I had lost eight of my last ten fights. And without going too much into detail, one could say my personal life had been in shreds, too. To me, the Grand Prix was a way to right some wrongs in my career. Most importantly, it was a way for me to be able to see my daughter again. And thatās what itās all about for me. Focus had come into my life. My past problems with the lawā¦those were behind me. My mind and body were focused on training. I was thinking about my daughter every second I could, and that drove me to train even harder. When the night of the Grand Prix came, I was ready.
First up for me was Charles Bennett. āKrazy Horse,ā as heās most well-known, is not an opponent to take lightly. I was willing to trade, but I wanted the takedown. And I got it. He swept me, which surprised me, and when I latched on an armbar, he tried to spike me on my head. But nothing was going to stop me. I stayed focused. I saw his head in the right position, and I caught him in a guillotine. He again tried to slam me on my head, but I had it in and he tapped. I appreciate the fight Charles gave me, but right then I knew this would be my night. Everything was falling into place.
Next up for me was Dennis Bermudez. I didnāt know much about him, but I had heard he was a good wrestler. I saw very early in the fight that this was the case. He had no intention of striking, and went for a takedown pretty quickly. Unfortunately for him, his inexperience gave him away. I slipped to the mat, and I encouraged him to follow. To my shock, he actually followed me down. Big mistake. I was able to utilize my positioning to eventually get a sort of chin-in choke. Bermudez defended well, but I got the hooks in, and eventually a body-lock on. Bermudez is young, and I think heās got a good career in front of him. But, again, I knew this was my night. I was prepared to fight forty minutes if I needed to. The thought of my daughter was spurring me on. And now I was in the finals.
My team had been behind me, my girlfriend was behind me, and I was ready to take the Grand Prix title home with me. In the final with me would be Carlo Prater, who Iād actually submitted once before, back in 2004 in another tournament. Carlo had lost earlier in the night, but was in the finals with me as an injury replacement. I like Carlo, but all I saw in front of me was the last obstacle standing in the way of me seeing my girl. I wouldnāt be denied, not tonight. Carlo is a tough guy, but heād already fought two full fights. I saw my opening early on when the fight went to the ground. We tested our wills against each other on the mat. I was able to maneuver him into position for the rear-naked choke, and though he fought it, he had to tap. I had done it.
The emotion just started pouring out. I couldnāt help it. I wept, I smiled, I laughed, and ultimately I went over and paid my respects to Carlo. It was all so humbling. But Iād done it. Thanks to my team, my friends, my girlfriend, and most of all to my little girl. Iād be on the next flight to go see her. And I didnāt feel nervous about that at all.
In the end, I felt like Iād been raised from the dead. I feltā¦resurrected. And in a lot of ways, it was a factual way of thinking about it. I had redeemed myself as a fighter, and as a man.
In a recent article I wrote not too long ago regarding Jake Shields, we mentioned the fact that Shields had to postpone his fight with Drew Fickett due to a back injury he had suffered. The bout for EliteXC’s welterweight title was originally scheduled for March 29th and because of Jake’s back injury, the title fight would then be moved to the June 14th fight card.
However, we are now informed that Fickett has recently injured his knee during a training session. Fickett has won 4 of his last fights and he will look to defend his title once he is 100% recovered. It has been unfortunate for both fighters having suffered back to back injuries, pushing the fight once more on a later date. There is no information as of yet regarding what the next fight date may be. We will keep you guys posted once we are notified.
Here’s a snip from EliteXC Vice President Jared Shaw:
āObviously the back injury happened (to Shields) and the
easiest thing to do was move him to Hawaii
to fight Drew…Unfortunately
since then Drew Fickett has hurt his knee and heās not going to be able to take
that fight on June 14 and that will be rescheduled again."
Drew Fickett (29-5-0) was supposed to fight on Saturday’s UFC 73-Stacked.Ā Due to an injury, he will now be replaced by Jason “The Gizzard” Gilliam (11-1-0).Ā Fickett was already replacing Jeff Joslin who was also injured about a month ago.
Chris “Lights Out” Lytle (32-14-4) continues to train, awaiting his next opponent…whoever isn’t injured by Saturday that is.
Lytle had lost in The Ultimate fighter 4 Finale to Matt Serra in a split decision.Ā Due to that loss, he had to face Matt Hughes, who returned to the octagon for the first time since losing his belt to George St-Pierre.Ā The fight between Lytle and Hughes ended with a complicated decision win for the former UFC Welterweight champion, Matt Hughes.Ā Chris Lytle put up a good fight and lasted the entire 3 rounds, which clearly showed that he wasn’t some small punk.Ā Lytle will now face Gilliam in order to work his way back up and get his chance for the title.