Un Sik "Tornado" Song (8-0) finished his mandatory military service about a month ago. It didn't take him long to get back in the action. Un Sik fought two weeks ago in DEEP: Grachan against Atsushi Ueda (8-3) and won via unanimous decision. He said he had his opponent in a deep triangle and an armbar and had the guy fully mounted but couldn't finish him. He seemed a bit embarassed that he gassed towards the end of the fight, but give the guy a break, he hadn't fought in two years. Now that he's back to training full time his conditioning shouldn't be a factor for long. Un Sik isn't working a part time job, and is instead focusing on fighting. He has set himself a pretty tough schedule for his first months back. After his last fight he has a pro kickboxing match next month and then another fight in DEEP the month after that. If he wins that fight it looks like he'll be getting a title shot against Katsunori Kikuno (13-2), who also fights in DREAM. The return of 'Tornado San" has been getting some decent attention on the interwebs, with articles and people commenting about his fight here, here and here.
Un Sik has really been working on his wrestling a lot lately. I haven't been able to scrimmage with him lately but we work technique together and then I run him through drills and situational scrimmaging with other guys. the speed that he picks up techniques is mind blowing. His kinesthetic memory is probably the best I've ever seen. He can see a complicated technique once and use it in a live situation almost immediately. Scary. he's really jacked about the improvement in his wrestling. Yesterday he told me that in 20 amateur and professional fights he has never scored a takedown on a leg attack and that is going to do it in his next fight. We've also been doing a lot of pummeling and clinch work, especially against the wall. His last fight and his next one are in a cage and it's an area of MMA he's never really worked on before. It seems like more and more Japanese organizations are starting to use cages and Asian fighters definitely need to learn that part of the game.
Here's a video of me, Heung Kol and Un Sik in between matches at a tournament.
Un Sik and John warming up before some kickboxing sparring.
In other Daegu MMA news "Little GSP" as he's known, has his first kcikboxing match coming up next month. he's been working pretty hard with a lot of the older guys. It's kind of fun to watch a 16 year old kid go from total goofball to focused fighter training for a fight. This kid has really stepped up his training in the last while and I'll be keeping my eye on him when I leave Korea.
I spotted a good piece of Konglish on my drink the other day. Koreans love their vitamin drinks. I don't even know what kind of vitamins are in these drinks but they must be good right? Even if there's nothing in it at least I'll feel more confident, at least according to the copy on the can.
Ho Shin Sool, KING OF THE CAGE and XCC
The boys are ready to rock again. Jeff, Ray, Trevor and Johnny are going to represent Ho Shin Sool at King of the Cage on May 8th at the Dreamakes Theater. Everything I heard about the last event was great, here's hoping this one is just as good and better. My brother, Mitch, and Adrian Vilaca are also going to be fighting soon in Birch Run, under the MUTT MMA banner. Here's the poster for the KOTC event, with Trevor and Jeff on it. I heard that there are some renovations coming up at Ho Shin Sool. After seeing that poster I hope they put a tanning bed in the basement.
Genki Sudo Appreciation
Living in Asia I've really learned a lot about the Asian MMA scene. I've learned a lot about a lot of differnt fighters and seen a lot of awesome fights that have never been broadcasted in North America. One fighterthat I've become a huge fan of is Genki Sudo. I always knew who he was, but never knew much about him until recently. The guy is a phenomenal fighter, carries a positive message with him all the time and is very interesting to listen to in his inerviews. Sudo started as a wrestler, but developed all around MMA skills so quickly that he was soon taking on and beating World Class kickboxers in Striking only K1 matches. His fighting style is impossible to pin down. He might switch from a pure grappling style into drunken boxing before throwing in "the robot" and using his Muay Thai to finish a fight. That's to say nothing of his ring entrances that make Mayhem Miller look like he's walking in off the street in jeans and a T Shirt. Genki Sudo fought in the UFC three times, going 2-1 but fought most of his fights in Asia, which is too bad for North American fans. Do yourself a favour and watch the documentary that I posted at the top right. It's about 40 minutes long and split into 5 parts. I posted the first two. It's a cool documentary with good fight highlights and interviews and it's well produced. I have a tough time imagining that any MMA fan could watch the documentary and not be a fan of the guy. As a matter of fact I think everyone, fight fan or not, would appreciate a lot of the interview sections. After all, Sudo mentions that to him MMA was a in many ways just the medium to get his message across to as large an audience as possible.