Category Archives: Hard Knocks 365
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Forward pressure makes opponents nervous, puts them on the defense and has them reacting to you. Pace also creates mental pressure on your opponent to keep up or slow down. Physical pressure against the cage and on top can be used as a compliance measure or to inflict damage.
Either way, it chips away at their will to continue and makes them want to quit. Stay relentless with your pace and pressure, and you may not even need to make it to the next step.
At UFC 225, Colby Covington pushed a relentless pressure on Rafael dos Anjos that was not returned, ultimately . breaking the former champ.
Anyone fighting under Henri Hooft at Hard Knocks 365 will put a relentless forward pressure on you, and using simple striking, they will make it look easy finishing you.
Check out how Hard Knock’s fighter Gilbert Burns used forward pressure to earn a ferocious knockout at UFC Glendale. There’s nothing fancy about the strikes themselves, but coupled with Burns’ relentless pace and pressure, there was nowhere for his opponent to go but down.
With a new four-fight Bellator MMA contract in hand, Dominic Mazzotta (13-2) has a date set for his next fight, as “The Honey Badger” is set to face Josh Sampo (11-5) at Bellator 197 in St. Charles, Missouri.
Mazzotta announced the bout in a FloCombat interview with James Lynch.
The bout will be Mazzotta’s third with the promotion, as he bounced back from a knockout loss against A.J. McKee at Bellator 178 to earn a win over Matt Lozano at Bellator 186 in Pennsylvania in November.
The Pittsburgh area native has recently made some big moves in his life, including getting married in Las Vegas last month and moving to Florida to train at the Hard Knocks 365 gym.
Mazzotta entered Bellator last year as one of the hottest prospects in the sport, riding a nine-fight winning streak with big wins at both featherweight and bantamweight.
Steve Mowry (3-0 MMA) is a young heavyweight in age (25-years-old) and experience (only 3-0 as a professional). Mowry has a lot of hype behind him with his tall build at 6’9″. MMA Today had the pleasure to talk to the prospect, Mowry about his future and many other facets.
First of all, How did you get into MMA? Do you have a background in any other sports?
I had heard about a sport where everything was legal and had seen commercials for UFC and TUF on TV but I got into it when I had read about it in a magazine. At that moment I knew it was something I wanted to do and be successful at.
Is MMA your full-time job or are you working somewhere else as well?
I train full-time 2-3 times a day but I also teach kickboxing three times a week and work part-time security on the weekends.
What would be your favorite striking technique and grappling technique?
My favorite striking technique is the uppercut. My favorite grappling technique is the rear-naked-choke.
You train out of Hard Knocks 365, how were you introduced to the camp? Who are some of your main training partners? You trained with the Blackzilians in the past, correct?
Yes I joined The Blackzilians in 2016. The move to Hard Knocks 365 was the next logical step. When Henri [Hooft] and Greg [Jones] left the Blackzilians, I followed them. My main training partners are Linton Vassell, Stefan Struve, Viktor Pesta, and Volkan Oezdemir.
Throughout the first episode the UFC’s Embedded series for this weekend’s pay-per-view event in Boston, light heavyweight title challenger Volkan Oezdemir is shown training alongside former middleweight champ Luke Rockhold.
The same Rockhold who came up alongside Daniel Cormier at the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose and who remains close friends and training partners with the main he’ll face in the first of Saturday night’s twin title fights.
It’s an odd situation, but one that has had little impact on the unflappable Swiss challenger, who looks to complete an incredible initial 12 months on the UFC roster by claiming championship gold this weekend in Boston.
“We keep it really professional,” Oezdemir said of working alongside Rockhold at Hard Knocks 365, the South Florida facility that has become home to a number of elite talents over the last year. “I know he’s close to Cormier, so I’m not trying to get any insight or information. We’re training side-by-side, but basically I’m doing my stuff and he’s doing his stuff.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., July 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Hard Knocks 365 (HK365), an all-access fitness training center, is pleased to announce it is open for business at Xtreme Action Park, South Florida’s premier indoor entertainment complex. Within the walls of the 30,000-square-foot facility there is an indoor field turf, soccer field (coming soon), two fully-sized basketball courts, heavy bags, fully-equipped weight room, 4,500 square feet of matting for combat training, men’s and women’s locker rooms, showers, and more. All your fitness & sports performance goals can be achieved under one roof!
The venue has three core functions; sports performance training (XPE Sports), combat training (kickboxing and Brazilian jiu jitsu) and basketball (House of Hoops 365). With this instilled variety, there is something for everyone under the Hard Knocks 365 roof. The gym’s already existing roster of professional athletes includes MMA fighters Michael Johnson, Robbie Lawler, Volkan Oezdemir and Michael Chandler, as well as NFL players like Darrelle Revis, Anquan Boldin, Mark Ingram, Pierre Garçon and Byron Maxwell.
After an eventful (for lack of a better term) week in Florida in anticipation to Hurricane Irma, we are back in business and better than ever. Better than ever because Luke Rockhold has just completed his training camp with Henri Hooft under our roof, and is now at the official weigh-in as he faces off David Branch as we speak (or as I type this).
Yes, the champ is back bigger, stronger, and “badder” than ever. The former StrikeForce and middleweight champion has had a lengthy spell on the sidelines after his defeat to Michael Bisping and also due to an injury, but now, after having recuperated and trained extensively under Henri Hooft’s “hkickboxing” system, Rockhold is on a mission to take his title back, and he believes David Branch is his first crucial step back into the fold. UFC film crews were here at Hard Knocks 365 to capture some footage of Rockhold’s intense training regime. In an interview, Rockhold said, “obviously I’m not happy about how my last fight went, and I’m ready to come back and write that wrong. First we take down David Branch, then we take back the game”. Rockhold was nothing short of resolute during his camp. He had observed Hooft’s high-caliber methodology first-hand when he was on the losing side in his bout versus Belfort, when Hooft happened to be cornering Belfort, and as such, sought out Henri for this ever-crucial bout against Branch. The rest was history, and Rockhold too, will make history once he ends David Branch’s 11-fight win streak.
But he isn’t alone. Kamaru Usman, and Gilbert Burns, will also be present at UFC Fight Night 116 in Pittsburgh at the PPG Paints Arena this Saturday, and they face tough opposition in Sergio Moraes and Jason Saggo. But Usman, unlike Durinho and Rockhold, is on a roll, having won his last 9 fights in a row. The Nigerian Nightmare has an impressive record of 10-1 that he will look to improve on to be a top contender, while Durinho is on the verge of a comeback, having lost his last fight to Michel Prazeres. If the trio go 3-for-3 at the end of Saturday night, it will be a big boost for Henri Hooft, and of course, Hard Knocks 365.
After a turbulent week brought on by the biggest fighting spectacle of all time, the “Money Fight”, we are back with our regularly scheduled programing. Mayweather and McGregor may have been a fight full of bravado, but it is to be eclipsed tomorrow by a fight full of blood. Stefan Struve, a Hard Knocks 365 regular, will be facing Alexander Volkov in the heavyweight division. This bout is especially “monumental” as it will be the fight with the highest combined height of all time, at 13’6, with Volkov standing at 6’7, and Struve at 7 feet. It is very much poised to be a clash of the titans, and with the venue being in Rotterdam, Holland (the country with the tallest people on earth on average), the title is befitting to say the least. In an interview, Struve stated he hopes fight will get him back on track to challenge for the title, and even hinted that Stipe Miocic, the current heavyweight champion, owes him a rematch as champion, since Struve got the better of him back in 2012. Volkov himself attested to the epic proportions of the upcoming bout, stating taking on Struve will be no easy task, as he is by the far the tallest fighter he’s ever faced, and that he’s usually the one used to dwarfing his opponent.
Desmond Green, another Hard Knocks 365 regular, is set to face another Russian in Rustam Khabilov under the prelims. With the fight card being mostly a contingent of Russian nationals, and the event taking place in Holland, Struve’s country of origin, UFC Fight Night 115 is sure to be one for the books.
Stateside, our neighbors, Xtreme Action Park, will be hosting their first professional fight event. Over 800 confirmed attendees will fill Xtreme Action Park’s “Arena”, all thanks to the diligent work of promoters “Fight Time Promotions” under the alliance MMA wing. Yet another one of Henri Hooft’s prodigies at Hard Knocks 365, Gerald Rosa, will be looking to cement his first professional win.
In more charitable news, we’ve begun to collect donations of any kind for the victims of Hurricane Harvey. If you’re in the Fort Lauderdale area, don’t hesitate in dropping off canned food, clothes, supplies, etc. for the relief effort being conducted in Texas.
Tomorrow, we will witness perhaps the most viewed, hyped up, bout in the history of combat sports. As you all know by now (unless you’ve been living under a rock), Floyd Mayweather will come out of retirement to face Conor McGregor at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The two biggest egos will clash in the ring (not the octagon), to put on the single-most lucrative event of all time. The figures, are ridiculous. The projected purse is a whopping $300 million; PPV sales alone will be in the $700 million range. The split has been reported to be 70-30, but with McGregor looking to increase his net worth tenfold, he would even be happy with a 90-10 split.
Much like the title of the fight suggests, this bout is mainly about money. Not even pride, is really on the line. Should McGregor lose, he and his fan base will take the “well he wasn’t a boxer route”. Should somehow Mayweather lose, he will blame his age and the fact that he had to come out of retirement for the bout. And with a huge tax bill on his chest and with allegedly little liquidity, one would think Mayweather needs this fight, almost more than McGregor does. But alas, it is just a money fight. Mayweather vacated all of his titles after hanging up his gloves in 2015, however, the WBC has commissioned a “Money Belt”, a crocodile-skinned, 4000 diamond-encrusted belt, which is believed to be valued in the millions. Ultimately, it is a circus show, a display of bravado and power by the rich, famous, and talented. For all intents and purposes, it is a mere money fight, not a real fight.
The real fights, took place over the weekend. Henri Hooft’s professional up-and-coming fighters were out in full force. Steven Mowry KO’d Dustin Clements at Titan FC 45, while Demarques Jackson submitted Luciano Dos Santos 20 minutes afterwards via triangle. All the way in Sioux Falls, Tyler Ray, unfortunately, was submitted by J.P. Saint Louis, but later commented that his resolve was now stronger than ever to get back on track to land a contract with either the UFC or Bellator.
Another busy week for us in the books and this time the cameras were on since Monday. As most of you know by now, Stefan Struve will be facing Alexander Volkov in Rotterdam for UFC Fight Night 115; Struve will be headlining the event in a bid to get his career back on track after having discovered in 2013 his aortic valve was leaking. A UFC film crew stopped by on Wednesday to interview Struve and capture some cool footage of Hard Knocks 365. We will be posting those on our facebook and snippets of it on our Instagram. Be on the lookout.
Ditto for Luke Rockhold. Yesterday (Thursday) and today (Friday), UFC film crews were busy filming Rockhold, as he too is looking to get his MMA career back on track after a knee injury ruled him out for a bout against Ronaldo Souza. Rockhold professed his loyalty to his California native American Kickboxing Academy, but was still grateful to train with Henri Hooft, Greg Jones and Kami Barzini under our roof. He (like Struve) will be headlining his own UFC Fight Night in Pittsburgh, taking on David Branch. The million dollar question remains though: when will he get a shot at Michael Bisping for round 3? We can only wait.
Good luck to them both.
Now for the up-and-comers this weekend.
Steven Mowry and Demarques Jackson, two of Hooft’s young prospects whom are HK365 regulars, will be at Titan FC 45 locally here in the Fort Lauderdale area. Steven will look to improve upon his 1-0 clean record as he takes on Dustin Clements, while Demarques with a 6-1 record, will go toe-to-toe with Luciano Dos Santos. We will be ringside cheering them on! Tyler Ray, another of Hooft’s up-and-comers, is all the way in Sioux Falls, SD, for LFA 19 versus J.P. Saint Louis. We’re all hoping for 3-out-of-3 wins to cap off the week.