“Cage Warriors is the show where I’m going to make my comeback and win the welterweight title.” – Tom ‘Kong’ Watson

Originally posted on 8th April 2019

Tom 'Kong' Watson
Tom ‘Kong’ Watson

Born and raised in Southampton, England, Tom Watson first started in combat sports at the age of 16, when he took up boxing.  A three-time ABA Southern Counties Champion and being awarded ‘Amateur boxing standout of the year’ in 2006 was his introduction into mixed martial arts.

Watson made his professional mixed martial arts debut on 19th February 2006 for a local show at the Copthorne Hotel and Resort in London. On ‘ZT Fight Night 1’ where he won via Guillotine choke in 71 seconds, he returned on the show’s second instalment on June 25th the same year where he won via decision.

In 2007, Watson competed in five fights for UK promotion Cage Rage gaining a record of two wins and three losses.  From 2008 – 2012 Watson fought a further twelve times for promotions Cage Rage, AFC, UCMMA (formerly Cage Rage), MFC and BAMMA.  With his sole loss to Jesse Taylor at MFC 26, Watson picked up the inaugural UCMMA middleweight title along with the BAMMA middleweight title when he fought Jack Marshman at BAMMA 9.

With news that Watson has signed to elite European promotion Cage Warriors and will be facing Aaron ‘King’ Khalid at Cage Warriors 104 on April 27th, 2019 in Cardiff, it was only fitting that I should re-introduce ‘Kong’ to the world.

You’d be forgiven if you are not familiar with Tom ‘Kong’ Watson as of late, with his last competitive fight being on August 8th, 2015 for the UFC.  Spending three years with the world’s number one promotion in the UFC, Watson had two wins and five losses (with those losses coming by way of decisions) for the UFC taking his overall record to 17-9.

Watson was not done with competing and was still actively seeking opportunities to fight in the UFC.  Having no success, Watson was released by the UFC and continued to explore roles outside of the UFC, doing some commentary jobs here and there.  It was at this point that promotion BAMMA contacted Watson regarding doing some presenting and commentary jobs for them. They also wanted Watson (who had been with BAMMA since their first event up until he signed to the UFC) to compete again for them. This news was music to Watson’s ears as he had not hung up his gloves and retired as many people thought due to his 3-year absence from the sport.

Unfortunately, due to issues out of Watson’s control, BAMMA was no longer a viable option as a promotion to make his long-awaited come back on. Instead, elite European promotion Cage Warriors signed Watson in the welterweight division (Watson previously competed in the middleweight division) in January of 2019.

Watson trains predominately at his state of the art gym called ‘Analysis’ which is located right next to him in Southampton, and with the occasional odd trip back to California to train. Watson is already preparing hard for his upcoming bout for his Cage Warriors debut.

Deciding to cut down to welterweight was an easy decision for Watson. He stated that “quite a few people had told me that I should have been a welterweight when I competed in the UFC as I never really cut any weight.  When I look back on my career I do wonder if 170lb was the weight, I should have been competing at, so this is an attempt to test out that theory.”

Not content with winning a UCMMA (formally known as Cage Rage) and BAMMA title, Watson has made it very clear that the aim is to win the Cage Warriors welterweight title stating “I’m not coming here to have a bit of fun or have a couple of fights.  I’m coming here to pick up another title to add to the two other titles I have held.  I don’t know if there is anybody that has all of those titles, so that is my goal.”

With his first love being boxing Watson is in the middle of applying of getting his trainers license as he has a few guys who are looking to make their pro boxing debut so he can be in their corner.

/With the legalisation of Bare Knuckle Boxing, Watson has a couple of guys that he trains. Watson stated “it is not something that interests me, I do like the idea of fighting without gloves more than with gloves, I think gloves are probably less safe, and bare-knuckle is safer. It’s a big misconception that people think Bare Knuckle Boxing is more dangerous.  I’d say it is a lot safer as you can’t do much damage as you break your hands more and you don’t have this protection and mould on your fist to keep punching the shots away.  I will say though on bare-knuckle when they wear the wraps; I think it’s like wearing gloves and its worse, so to me, bare-knuckle boxing should be basically without wraps or anything.”

Going back to his time with the UFC, Watson stated “ I competed against the best in the world, and I have never got finished by any of them, only losing by decisions. Quite a few were controversial decisions at best for me.  Fighting is fighting and if you are losing a decision sport contest– well I’ve said it before, in the UFC I don’t really see that as losing, just the system and the setup. For instance, if we changed the UFC fight to a no time limit would of I lost any of those fights? I doubt it.  It is what it is, that’s the rules you play by.  Strategy wise I probably didn’t fight too smart. If you look at the earnings of the people in the UFC, I’m still relatively high up there, and I didn’t win many fights, so, on that basis, well it was smart – possibly.”

For those of you that have followed Watson’s career from the beginning, you will recall Watson enters the cage wearing a gorilla mask, hence why he has the nickname ‘Kong’. As Watson made his last appearance for the UFC in 2015, a new British fighter in the name of Darren ‘The Gorilla’ Till was making his debut for the promotion. “I’m not bothered by Darren Till” Watson states, “I believe Dan Hardy gave him the nickname ‘Gorilla’, it is what it is. I think everyone knows ‘Kong’ more than Darren Till’s ‘The Gorilla’.

“Darren Till is a great fighter, but I don’t think he is synonymous with a Gorilla.”

“Cage Warriors is the show where I’m going to make my comeback and win the welterweight title.”

With his debut for his Cage Warriors bout being dubbed ‘King’ vs ‘Kong’, there will only one way to find out if this is the start of a resurgence for Tom ‘Kong’ Watson by tuning into Cage Warriors 104 on April 27th live on UFC Fight Pass.


It was the Superfight we was all waiting to watch, UFC 183 Diaz vs Silva and I must admit, watching the five round fight, go five rounds, was something spectacular, in a good way!

Nick Diaz played his part perfectly, with a game plan at times that was just so ‘Nick Diaz’. Unfortunately it was not to be his night as Anderson Silva took the Unanimous Decision by the Judges.

Here are all the results from UFC 183 :

Anderson Silva  Def Nick Diaz via UD 49-46, 50-45, 50-45

Nick mutual respect silva UFC 183

Silva kneeling UFC 183
Silva kneeling UFC 183

Tyron Woodley Def Kelvin Gastelum via Split Decision 29-28 Gastelum, 29-28 Woodley, 30-27 Woodley

Tyron Woodley Win UFC 183
Tyron Woodley Win UFC 183

Al Iaquinta Def Joe Lauzon  via TKO 3 mins 34 secs Round Two

Al Win UFC 183
Al IaquintaWin UFC 183

Thales Leites  Def Tim Boetsch via Arm Triangle Choke 3 mins 45secs Round Two

Thales Win UFC 183
Thales  Leites Win UFC 183

Thiago Alves Def Jordan Mein via TKO 0.39secs Round Two

Thiago Alves Win
Thiago Alves Win

Miesha Tate  Def Sara McMann via Majority Decision 29-28, 29-27, 28-28

Thales Win UFC 183
Thales Win UFC 183

Derek Brunson Def Ed Herman  via TKO 0.36secs Round One

John Lineker Def Ian McCall  via UD 29-28, 29-28, 29-28

Rafael Natal  Def Tom Watson via UD  30-27, 30-27, 30-26

Ildemar Alcantara Def  Richardson Moreira via Split Decision 29-28 Alcantara, 29-28 Moreira, 29-28 Alcantara

Thiago Santos Def Andy Enz via TKO 1 min 56 sec Round One



Thales Leites  vs. Tim Boetsch $50,000 Each


Thiago Alves $50,000

Tim Boetsch $50, 000



UFC 183 takes place tonight, January 31st at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada.

All 24 athletes stepped on the official scales to make sure they met their contracted weight agreements, 22 out of the 24 sailed through.

John Linekar missed his contracted weight by 4 lbs and co-main event athlete Kelvin Gastelum missed his contracted weight by 9 lbs which resulted in a brief hospitalization due to his weight cut before he stepped on the scales.

Here are the full weigh-in results:

Main Card 

Nick Diaz vs Anderson Silva Face Off UFC 183
Nick Diaz vs Anderson Silva Face Off UFC 183

Middleweight : Anderson Silva (186 lbs) vs. Nick Diaz (185 lbs)

Anderson Silva weigh in UFC 183
Anderson Silva weigh in UFC 183


Nick Diaz weigh in UFC 183
Nick Diaz weigh in UFC 183

Welterweight : Tyron Woodley (170.5 lbs) vs. Kelvin Gastelum (180 lbs)*

Tyron Woodley weigh in UFC 183
Tyron Woodley weigh in UFC 183


Kelvin Gastelum weigh in UFC 183
Kelvin Gastelum weigh in UFC 183

Lightweight : Joe Lauzon (156 lbs) vs. Al Iaquinta (156 lbs)

Joe Lauzon weigh in
Joe Lauzon weigh in


Joe Lauzon vs Al Iaquntia Face Off
Joe Lauzon vs Al Iaquntia Face Off

Middleweight : Thales Leites  (186 lbs) vs. Tim Boetsch (185.5 lbs)

Thales Leites vs Tim Botesch
Thales Leites vs Tim Boetsch


Welterweight : Jordan Mein (169.5 lbs) vs. Thiago Alves (171 lbs)

Thiago Alves weigh in UFC 183
Thiago Alves weigh in UFC 183

Thiago Alves vs Jordan Mein Face off
Thiago Alves vs Jordan Mein Face off


Bantamweight : Miesha Tate (135.5lbs) vs. Sara McMann (135.5 lbs)

Miesha Tate weigh in UFC 183
Miesha Tate weigh in UFC 183

Sara McMann weigh in
Sara McMann weigh in


Miesha Tate vs Sara McMann Face Off
Miesha Tate vs Sara McMann Face Off

Middleweight : Ed Herman (186 lbs) vs. Derek Brunson (186 lbs)

Ed Herman vs Derek Brunson Face Off
Ed Herman vs Derek Brunson Face Off

Flyweight : Ian McCall (126 lbs) vs. John Lineker (130 lbs)*

Ian McCall vs John Linekar Face Off
Ian McCall vs John Linekar Face Off

Middleweight : Rafael Natal (185.5 lbs) vs. Tom Watson (186 lbs)

Tom Watson weigh in UFC 183
Tom Watson weigh in UFC 183

Prelims (UFC Fight Pass)

Featherweight : Diego Brandao (142 lbs) vs. Jimy Hettes (146 lbs)

Diego Brando vs Jimy Hettes Face Off
Diego Brando vs Jimy Hettes Face Off

Middleweight : Richardson Moreira (185.5 lbs) vs. Ildemar Alcantara (185 lbs)

Middleweight : Thiago Santos (185.5 lbs) vs. Andy Enz (186 lbs)

Andy Enz Weigh In UFC 183
Andy Enz Weigh In UFC 183

Andy Enz Face Off UFC 183
Andy Enz Face Off UFC 183


*Missed weight, Fined 30% of Purse


UFC Fight Night 47 Weigh-In Results and Pictures

Shawn weigh in

UFC Fight Night 47 is live on the FOX Sports network tonight or BT Sports if you are in the UK. Before any event takes place, the all important weigh-ins happens first, which happened live from Bangor, Maine where UFC Fight Night 47 will be taking place tonight.


Ryan Bader 205lbs vs Ovince St. Preux 205lbs

Ross Pearson 156lbs vs Gray Maynard 156lbs

ross pearson weigh in

Tim Boetsch 186lbs vs Brad Tavares 185 lbs

Brad weigh in


brad tim face off

Seth Baczynski 171lbs vs Alan Jouban 170 lbs

Alan weigh in

Seth weigh in

seth alan face off

Shawn Jordan 260lbs vs Jack May 247lbs

Shawn weigh in

Jack shawn face off

Thiago Tavares 146lbs vs Robbie Peralta 146lbs


Jussier Formiga 126lbs vs Zach Makovsky 125lbs

Lauren Murphy 135lbs vs Sara McMann 135lbs

lauren murpy ufc weigh in

Lauren sara face off

Tom Watson 185lbs vs Sam Alvey 185lbs

Tom Watson face off pic

Nolan Ticman 136lb vs. Frankie Saenz 136lb


UFC Fight Night 47 takes place tonight on the FOX Sports network (check your local area listings) and also on the BT Sport platform in the UK at 1am.


Last post for 2013 – A lot of Thank You’s and some pictures :)

2013 1

It’s been a challenging year for me but I wouldn’t change it for one second, after all I got to do what so many of you still want to do and I have achieved all of it in the six months that I started this harsh challenge – which fell into my lap purely by coincidence (you will have to refer back to my very first blog read about that one)!

I will however give a big shout out to the person who got me started not only in writing my own blog but who introduced me to what I currently do, and that is Jonathan Millard, for whom I am forever grateful to.

What alot of people, more than likely do not know about me, is that I have been in the ‘combat sport industry’ for just over 20 years now, so I have legitmately worked my way up the ladder  – although, it’s fine for you to believe whatever you choose to believe, I personally don’t give a shit, again those that really know me, know that also!

I got to cover local grass root shows, which to me I have always been a great fan of and will always take time out of my schedule to go cover them as much as I can, I  covered Pain Pit 3 times, Ultimate Impact,  Into The Cage, Neilson Promotions White Collar Boxing then I also covered Cage Warriors, BAMMA and UFC Manchester, not bad even if I do say so myself!

Then a great event happend for UKMMA – The UKMMA Expo in Manchester and I got to be part of the only Media Team that had Access All Areas and when I say that, I truly mean that; not like all the other Media people that came in, the team I was with we were set up in the ‘Green Room’ with all our equipment and at one point their was one great surreal moment that I for one will never ever forget 🙂


It was a great run event by Darren Sherlock and Paul Crossley and of course Darren’s wife Michelle, all timed perefectly for when Michael Bisping would be in the UK, Manchester as it happens (his own town) and just after being announced he would be facing Mark Munoz, here also in Manchester in October (unfortuntaly due to Michael needing eye surgery he was forced to withdraw from the bout and Lyoto Machida replaced him)!

There were UFC athletes, Guest athletes, Guest speakers, Seminars to train with some of the  Guest athletes and stalls for the MMA community to come together and show there products of to the public; also there was the stall for SAFE MMA – for which I personally went over to Izzy Carnwath and spoke to her to see SAFE MMA  was all about, how promotions could get involved and WHY they should. I had such a better understanding afterwards.

Here is mine and Izzy’s SAFE MMA interview we also talk BAMMA 13


There was also a big NoGi BJJ competiton on, running throughout the Sunday which was awesome and six females took part amongst the hundreds of men.

At the show I managed to Video Interview (yes that was a very first for me) The Legend Ian ‘The Machine’ Freeman straight after his MMA Seminar – let me tell you know this guy is 100% gentleman when talking to him, Ian made my first video interview effortless (well I thought) 🙂

Here is mine and Ian’s interview:


I would however like to say a very big thank you to all the athlete’s I have worked with (so far)  without you giving up your time I would not of had your stories/journeys to write about and some very memorable moments to say the least, so in list of when  they were interviewed  here they all are:

Leigh Remedios

Alexei Roberts

Mario Saeed

War Machine

‘Rowdy’ Bec Hyatt

Ian ‘The Machine’ Freeman

Hector Lombard

Colin ‘Freakshow’ Fletcher

Bryony Tyrell

Aaron ‘Smackwell’ Blackwell

Jack ‘The Hammer’ Marshman

Lew Long

Jorge ‘Michelan’ Bezerra

Rosi Sexton

Faisel Ghazghazi

Mark ‘The hand of’ Godbeer

Lauren Murphy

And of course it would not be me, if I did not add in afew pictures of me with some of the athletes I had met 🙂


Have a great New Year.


PS I’ve kept all my boxing ones out of this one but look out for it next year  🙂 

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