‘If I remember right he said he had “perfect stand-up” – Alex Brunnen


RAGED UK MMA takes place this Saturday, March 7th at MECA in Swindon which promises to be an action packed night of amateur and professional MMA.

I managed to catch up with one of the co-main event headliner’s, 23-year-old,  Alex Brunnen, who in his own unique words discusses with me his up-coming fight with Julian Kerr, fighting back in his hometown since his amateur career, training at The MMA Lab with Benson Henderson and Joe Murphy plus his coach/mentor and good friend Oz.

Alex Brunnen

You’re going to be making your home town debut on March 7th at RAGED UK in a co-main event.  How does it feel to be finally not only fighting in your home town but to be also co-main event?

Whatever the running order of the fights, it doesn’t matter to me. I’m looking to put on a performance whether I was fighting first or last. 

You train out of SVT in Swindon under your mentor, coach and good friend Michael ‘Oz’ Osbourne. Can you talk me through what it’s been like for you having such a good friend guide you through your career thus far?

Haha Yeah!  Me and Oz are close. When I was just getting into this sport at 16 years old, Oz was like a god to me  Ahaha!  He is a real fighter.  He’s down!  I mean,  I remember this one time, after a fight some guy threw some beer in the ring at me and Ozzy jumped straight out of the ring and started ‘throwing down’ into a packed crowd; beast!      

You went 3-0 as an amateur before turning pro with a current record of 2-2.  Personally I feel people do not give you the credit you’re due; Having fought Joe Orrey in your first pro fight who is the current Painpit Bantamweight Champion for which you won; Nad Narimani who is now at Cage Warriors which resulted in a second round loss. You’re a guy who will rise to the challenge of a tough fight and not back away, why?

I know I haven’t fought as much as my teammates over the last few years due to personal reasons.  I finally feel I’m at a stage now,  where I can go to other MMA gyms and not feel completely out of my depth.  Back then when I was younger, I suppose I used to think of myself as a kid and perhaps I felt as if I didn’t belong with these guys but that’s changed now.

Looking back I feel I rushed the start of my career and should have had at least double the amount of amateur fights that I had; ultimately it doesn’t really matter now though.

Alex Brunnen

I’ve heard you’ve been over to The MMA Lab in Arizona to do some training.  Firstly how was the whole experience; secondly did you get the chance to train and roll with Benson Henderson; thirdly tell me more about trainer/fighter Joe Murphy.

Yeah I spent 4 months in 2014 over at the MMA Lab in Glendale, Arizona. It’s a great place. That gym is a martial artists dream. I THINK it has the most UFC fighters training in a single room anywhere in the world. The amount of lightweights and featherweights there is, is unreal! Everyone trains hard as fuck and there isn’t anything that someone wouldn’t be real good at.  In my opinion it is the very best MMA gym in the world.  John Crouch is a 2nd degree BJJ Blackbelt under Royce I BELIEVE and he is a wicked coach.

Yeah I’ve rolled with Benson. It was not nice (in a good way), that guy is a physical specimen.  He really is something different and I’ve yet to see an athlete that’s close to his calibre.

Joe Murphy is a cool guy! Real good BJJ and he’s also a big fella for the MMA weight he fights at.  He caught me in some funky omoplata shit when we were rolling one time and I was thinking “what the fuckkkk”.

For those people who do not know you or who have never met you, how would you describe yourself as a person then as a fighter?

As a person?  hmmm…  That would be a bit biased hearing an opinion on myself.

 I’d like to say fucking legendary but I’m sure someone will disagree somewhere haha!

Would you say that there are any similarities between you and a young ‘Nick Diaz’ at all, as in his fighting mentality, his confidence – which more than often is misconstrued into being more cocky and arrogant than what it really is and that of his ingenious fighting style?

Nah there’s no similarities that guy is insane!

Do you think the key to a successful fighter is self belief in being mentally prepared  as much as physically being prepared, if not more so?

The fight game is 90% mental I’ve come to realise that if you’re not in it mentally as much as you can be, you aren’t in it at all!

Alex Brunnen
Alex Brunnen

You’re facing Julian Kerr this Saturday March 7th at MECA, Swindon. Do you know much about your opponent or the challenges he could pose on the night?

If I remember right he said he had “perfect standup”  We’ll see!

At the Pre-fight press conference I noted one of your quick-witted responses “You can be an inch taller but six feet under is quite low” looking back on that, what are your thoughts?

Haha I was having fun. I was chilling!

What can we expect to see from you on the night when you face Julian Kerr at RAGED UK?

A war.

As you’re the home town fighter, do you feel for once having a big home crowd will play a big part into the atmosphere and how you feel once those cage doors shut on Saturday night?

I’m hoping to draw the energy from the crowd and fire it into Julian through combat.  It will be nice not be booed in my home town for once!

Lastly is there any sponsors or anyone you would like to thank?

Shout out to my team SVT, we train hard, we’ve really grown as a team lately too and there’s a good vibe. Shout out to Oz, and my kickboxing coach Daniel Hughes out of Scorpion kickboxing gym.

Thank you for your time Alex it’s appreciated.

You can keep up to date on Alex on his Facebook page here.

RAGED UK takes place this Saturday, 7th March at Swindon MECA.

Tickets are £20 and £40 VIP available from all fighters, The Forum, The Khyber; alternatively  you can buy online at  www.swindontickets.co.uk or  click on their social media pages Facebook/Twitter.

Tickets will be available on the door (subject to availability)

RAGED UK EVENT POSTER
RAGED UK EVENT POSTER

 

Photo Credits: Alex Brunnen/Tear-up/Knuckle-up

 

 

 

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Painpit – New Breed March 2nd Event Report and Full Results


2nd March 2013

Pain Pit – New Breed  

Pain Pit New Breed

 

I arrived at Newport’s  Leisure Centre with anticipation having always had  Pain Pit events scheduled in my diary and now I had no reason not to go and the timing was exactly right.

The Opening fight of the night  in the Amateur Level 3 Rules (No Headshots) (2 x 3mins) saw  Welterweights  Mark Turnville  ( Trojan Cheltenham) against  Jack ‘The Tank’ Shore  (Tillery Combat) who seemed to be a crowd favourite here, Turnville opened up with some good leg kicks, whilst Shore went in for the clinch position, knowing exactly he wanted this on the ground fast, Turnville managed to get a big body slam to Shore who kept his composure attempting to secure a Triangle only for Turnville to be saved by the Bell, the 2nd rnd was pretty much the same as the 1st with a dominant Shore maintaining  Top position & control with good body shots & another triangle attempt even taking  Turnville’s back in the final seconds.  Winner by UD Jack ‘The Tank’ Shore

In the 2nd fight of the night we saw the Light Heavyweights Sam Cousins from Weston-Super-Mare (Team Savage) against Jamie Curtis (Tillery Combat)

Sam Cousins starts the action by getting  the early takedown & into top position for most of the 1st rnd action, until Jamie Curtis manages to get back to his feet both men are standing. Cousins is throwing low kicks & Curtis is catching most of them, Cousins gets another takedown in rnd 2 with both men very game in gaining control on the floor, Cousins manages to get Curtis into a Rear Naked Choke for the last 15 seconds of this fight and he hung on in their as the bell went. Winner by UD Sam Cousins

In the Third fight we  saw Middleweight contenders Dan Hamer (David Round) against Ian McLeod (Tillery Combat)

Both men come out fast & trading punches & kicks McLeod gets the early takedown & a guillotine attempt, Hamer manages to get out, both men back to standing & trading punches, McLeod clips Hamer sending him to the floor,  McLeod seizing the moment attempts a  armbar  on Hamer who manages to hold on till end of the rnd. Start of rnd 2 McLeod gets Hamer with a great inside leg kick which sends him to the ground,  McLeod again struggles to gain top position which now sees him on his back setting up a triangle, Hamer submits Winner McLeod 2.15 rnd 2 Triangle Choke

Fourth fight of the night and were on to  Amateur Level 2 (Headshots Standing Only) ( 3×3 mins)

And the atmosphere was electric to what appeared to be a sold out Newport Leisure Centre again I can see why Pain Pit was living up to its reputation and we were only on the 4th fight of the night.

Welterweights Daniel Owens (Chris Rees ) against Ryan Legge  (Tillery Combat)

It was a great start by both guys, fast paced both exchanging shots with Owens taking control in the first part of the action, Legge soon got to work on the ground but decided to let  Owens back up to his feet with both men exchanging blows as it’s nearing the end of rnd 1  Legge gets  Owens with a good Right Hook, bell goes. As we start rnd 2  Legge took  Owens straight to the ground looking to take him out with a Triangle choke &  Owens Tapped Winner Legge 1.06 rnd 2 Triangle Choke

Fifth fight another welterweight match between Daniel Griffiths (Vendetta) against Patrick Magourlic (David Round)

Both men come out fast but its Griffiths who is pushing forward both men are exchanging kicks & punches, Magourlic takes it to the floor but its  Griffiths who gets Magourlic in a Head & Arm Choke Winner Griffiths 2.57 Rnd 1 Head & Arm Choke

Sixth Fight is a Lightweight fight between Paul Rodgers (Chris Rees) against Thomas James (Savage MMA)

Thomas James wastes no time & goes straight in & gets a takedown, gains top position, Paul Rodgers has a great technical defensive game from his back as he tries for a armbar then triangle from below,  Rodgers technical skills are  showing through in this fight and its Rodgers who gets the Kimura Winner Rodger 2.45 rnd 1 Kimura

Seventh fight & I knew as soon as I saw these fighters it would go the distance, let’s call it a gut instinct I have!  Its Light Heavyweight time and we have Gareth Stacey (NMMA) against Simas Norkus (Brotherhood MMA)

Norkus  gets the Takedown just where you would want this fight to go if you were a former European & US Wrestling Champ!  Stacey is working  hard to stop  Norkus passing his guard,  Stacey does point out to the ref which at this point is right in front of me  Norkus is holding onto his glove & pulling it back, so is warned lightly of this, this fight is staying as expected on the floor,  Norkus tries a knee bar, which  Stacey looks to ref & points out is illegal, Stacey capitalizes on this & gets Norkus on his back if only for a few seconds, Stacey is back to being on his back but bar no means is this fight boring, or very one-sided,  Stacey is doing a very good job of keeping Norkus of gaining the wrist control he is looking for by shrimping  #101 #basics, this fight goes from strength to strength with  Norkus being dominant though out even locking in a RNC in rnd 2 but  Stacey hung on as the bell went, great display of technical skills from both men in this fight. Winner UD Simas Norkus

The Eighth fight was in the Lightweight division and was crowd pleaser , sporting a green Mohawk Jason “Grasshopper”Jenkins (Falcons)  who entrance alone tore the roof of the leisure centre  against Sean Meany (Chris Rees)

Meany came out & got the first takedown early but it was  Jenkins showing dominant skills, control & body shots for the rest of the 1st rnd, the 2nd rnd  Jenkins goes for a takedown but  Meany sprawls,  Jenkins still gets  Meany where he wants him on the ground , a nice axe kick followed by the famous “Grasshopper” move allowed Jenkins to get Meany in a Gulliotine choke Winner Jenkins 1.12 Rnd 2 Guillotine Choke

Nineth Fight of the night we move onto the Unified Amateur Rules (3x3mins)

Light Heavyweight bout between Sam Stockdale from Cornwall (Fusion MMA) against Ryan Marshall (Tillery Combat)

This has the crowd on their feet as Ryan Marshall’s entrance  music is beginning to be played which is ironically is a sample of a Eminem track – business, (If you haven’t heard it look it up on YouTube then you will know where I’m coming from) you can now tell this is a packed venue with a great atmosphere.

Stockdale gets this fight underway with some great knees &  Marshall exchanges with some shots of his own, Stockdale gets the early takedown but not for long, both men on their feet but this time its Marshall who got the Takedown & gets top position with some vicious GnP, Stockdale doing well to defend Marshall off in the 1st rnd. We go into the 2nd rnd Marshall gets the takedown & takes top position Stockdale defends really well & gains Top position raining blows down on Marshall, not lasting for long as Marshall gains top position; this is a battle of who really wants it the most; it ends up against the fence with both men standing, Marshall gets a great Big Body slam & top position but again not for long as Stockdale then gains top position, as we enter the final rnd  Stockdale opens up with great leg kicks & gets a takedown but blink again & Marshall is in Top Position this is a real contender for #FOTN in my books both men are going toe-toe & ground to ground with one another, Marshall lets  Stockdale get back to his feet (we know Ryan Marshall has a great pedigree in Boxing skills & this is where he likes its best) not taking nothing at all away from Stockdale, as Stockdale is back to his feet  Marshall’s corner is shouting at him to get another takedown – & that’s what happened. Winner UD Ryan Marshall #FOTN for me.

Fight Ten sees us back in the Featherweight division Daryl Grant from Sidmouth (Lionsden) against Josh Reed (Tillery Combat)

Grant comes out with strong Leg kicks &  Reed answers with strong Punches, Reed takes this to the ground with a great text-book Guillotine Winner Josh Reed 0.52 Rnd 1 Guillotine Choke #SUB of the night for me

Fight Eleven  Middleweight Division between Will Davies (Chris Davies) and Lenny Benskin (Brotherhood MMA) Now this one I was particularly looking forward too, I had heard on the grapevine there had been a bit of bad blood between these two guys so I was hoping for them to leave it all in the cage tonight & boy I wasn’t disappointed.

There was a touch of gloves of some sorts to start with but Will Davies was very sneaky & went straight from there a bit too quick – sneaky! Davies  was straight in trading toe – toe & got a big slamming takedown, but  Benskin was having none of it, turned it round & ended on top position,  Benskin let Davies stand as this is where Benskin likes to do more damage & to dish punishment at its best, he comes in with a superman punch up against the fence which takes Davies to the floor from there Benskin is raining blow after blow until referee Mark Woodard stepped in & stops the fight Winner Lenny Benskin 1.52 Rnd 1 G’n’P 

Fight twelve were now at the PRO fights first in the Light Weight Division

Dave Addicott (DOW) against Kyle Prosser (Tillery Combat)  Addicott goes straight in with leg kicks whilst  Prosser goes to sweep Addicott’s leg to go for a takedown,  Prosser is on bottom position but don’t let this fool you, he is very dominant & active going for a triangle & armbar attempt which fails then he is raining hard elbows to  Addicotts middle of his head which I can hear from where I am sat,  Prosser goes for another triangle attempt but Addicott breaks full guard, Prosser still raining hard elbows & dominating from back position. Rnd 2nd & Addicott pushes forward,  Addicott gets the takedown and  Prosser doing text-book defending from his back and attempts yet another triangle but unsuccessful,  Addicott is doing all he can in the meantime unleashing some blows to  Prosser, but  Prosser defending well. We enter the last rnd both men are toe – toe trading blows,  Addicott catches  Prosser with a straight right to cause a devastating split across his left eye, referee Mark Woodard steps in & gets the Medics to look at the cut, the Medics say the fight cannot go on, this is unfortunate No-one wants to win by a Dr Stoppage in this Game & on my cards I had Prosser winning 2 rnds up! Winner Dave Addicott 1.18 Rnd 3 DR Stoppage 

Fight thirteen in the Welterweight division with Nottingham’s up and coming Max Cotton (RAW) against Owain Parry (Tillery Combat)

Both Men come out ready to trade toe-to-toe,  Parry comes out with a Spinning Back fist that misses, the fast Cotton catches Parry with a right cross which floors him, Cotton isn’t stopping there though and he goes to carry on until the Referee Mark Woodard steps in Winner Max Cotton 0.23 secs rnd 1 TKO #KO of the night for me.

Fight fourteen of the night is a Lightweight Title Fight between Jamie Rogers (DOW) against Marc ‘suplex’ Allen from Cheltenham (Trojan)

Both Men came out fast Rogers seemed to push the pace having  Allen up against the cage which seemed where he liked the fight to be; he got Allen in a tight Guillotine Choke for over a good minute, but Allen was standing his ground with good defensive work & not giving in & clearly taking instructions from his corner who I could hear from where I was sat, although with no action happening referee Mark Woodard urged the fighters to do some work,  Allen capitalized on this and managed to sink in a tight RNC which forced Rogers to tap with 9 secs left in the 1st rnd. Winner Marc Allen 4.51 Rnd 1  RNC  NEW Pain Pit Light Weight Title 

The Main Event was for the Bantamweight Title Brett ‘Pikey’ Johns ( Chris Rees) against Joe’ Orrible’ Orrey (Tillery Combat)

Both Men come out exchanging punches & its  Orrey who is pushing the pace to start with, Johns gets the early takedown and as we know this is where he loves to be & is comfortable at his best, rolling around, with his awesome technical skills from his Judo background, this could be anyone’s fight the way it is going back and forth for control Orrey gets top position and lands some real nasty horrible elbows this is obviously where his nickname comes in, finally Johns goes for a armbar attempt & gets it, it’s all too much for  Orrey who is quite emotional right in front of me. Winner Brett Johns 3.59 Rnd 1 Armbar New Pain Pit Bantamweight Title 

 

1-me working at pain pit march 2nd 2013

Full Results

Pro Fights

BATAMWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT – MAIN EVENT

Brett Johns (Chris Rees) Def Joe Orrey (Tillery Combat)  Via Armbar 3.59 Round 1

Brett Johns Now Pain Pit Batamweight Champion 

LIGHTWEIGHT TITLE FIGHT

Marc Allen (Trojan) Def Jamie Rogers (DOW) by Rear Naked Choke 4.51 Round 1

Marc Allen Now Pain Pit Lightweight Champion

Max Cotton (RAW) Def Owain Parry (Tillery Combat) TKO 0.23 secs Round 1

Dave Addicott (DOW) Def Kyle Prosser (Tillery Combat) Due to Doctor Stoppage (Split over eye)  1.18 Round 3

Unified Amateur (3 x 3 mins)

Lenny Benskin (Brotherhood) Def Will Davies (Chris Rees) by G’n’P 1.52 Round 1

Josh Reed (Tillery Combat) Def Daryl Grant (Lionsden) by Guillotine 0.52secs Round 1

Ryan Marshall (Tillery Combat) Def Sam Stockdale (Fusion Mma) Unanimous Decision

Amateur Level 2 (Head Shots Standing Only) (3 x 3 mins)

Jason Jenkins (Falcons) Def Sean Meany (Chris Rees) Via Guillotine 1.12 Round 2

Simas Norkus (Brotherhood) Def Gareth Stacey (NMMA) Via Unanimous decision

Paul Rogers (Chris Rees) Def Thomas James (Savage MMA) Via Kimura 2.45 Round 1

Daniel Griffiths (Vendetta) Def Patrick Magourlic (David Round) Via Head & Arm Choke 2.57 Round 1

Ryan Legge (Tillery Combat) Def Daniel Owens (Chris Rees) Via Triangle 1.06 Round 2

Amateur Level 3 ( No headshots) (2 x 3 mins)

Ian McLeod (Tillery Combat)  Def Dan Hamer (David Round)  Via Triangle 2.15 Round 2

Sam Cousins (Team Savage) Def Jamie Curtis (Tillery Combat) Via Unanimous Decision

Jack Shore ( Tillery Combat) Def Mark Turnville (Trojan) via Unanimous decision

Sub of the Night – Josh Reed

KO/TKO of the Night – Max Cotton

Fight of the Night – Sam Stockdale Vs. Ryan Marshall