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Tag: Drew Fickett

The Maestro: How Drew Fickett Finds Peace in the Piano


(Fickett plays Metallica’s “Unforgiven” in this recent clip from Arizona Combat Academy.)

By Santino DeFranco

MMA veteran Drew Fickett is well known for his UFC battle with Karo Parisyan, for handing Josh Koscheck the first loss of his career inside the Octagon, and for the struggles with addiction that temporarily derailed his career (and likely contributed to his appearance on Judge Judy for standing on the hood of a car and chipping golf balls off of it). But most people don’t know that Fickett is also a music junkie and piano buff — spending up to an hour a day tickling the black and white keys with his knotted knuckles and arthritic fingers.

Drew’s fight nickname, “Nightrider,” is somewhat of a new addition. For most of his career, Fickett held the moniker of “Master,” which is more fitting for a pianist, if only indirectly. “Master” is the English equivalent of the Spanish word “maestro,” which is often bestowed upon great composers, or other artists. Seeing as though Drew has a tattoo that reads “Hecho en Mexico” on his shoulder — though he was really born in Columbia, South Carolina — it all seems to make a bit more sense. Or at least it does by Fickett’s own logic.

I first learned of Drew’s piano prowess when he and a few other fighters from my gym were helping me move an antique piano for my wife, who has played since she was a child. After contacting a man selling the piano on Craigslist, I showed up to the guy’s house with a group of fighters to help me move it, none of whom knew a thing about the instrument, let alone how to play one, or so I thought.

I looked at the piano like a monkey staring at a computer. I checked for visible damage, hit a couple of keys, and then asked the man if he’d take $50 less than what he was asking. He said, “No.” I told him I’d take it. Drew, unhappy with my negotiating skills, as well as my inability to distinguish the musical tool from a large paperweight, chimed in.

“Tino, you don’t know how to play?” Drew asked.

“No. Not at all,” I replied.

“What the hell were you thinking buying a piano without even knowing if it works?”

Drew then walked over to the piano, pulled out the bench, and sat down in front of it. Slumped over like Schroeder from the Charlie Brown cartoons, he proceeded to blow all of our minds with the melodic sounds of songs that were unfamiliar to any of us. After about two minutes he stood up, turned around, and nonchalantly said, “A couple of keys are out of tune, but it’s a great fucking piano.”

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Head Kick Knockout of the Day: Drew Fickett Gets Smoked by Luis Felix at CES MMA 22


(Props: fightstreamcom)

We wish we could say that Drew Fickett turned his career around when he found sobriety — that he became a terror on the regional circuit, and will be returning to the UFC any day now. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be in the cards. Fickett suffered his fourth-straight loss at CES MMA 22 in Rhode Island on Friday night, eating a brutal head kick from local lightweight Luis Felix that dropped Fickett like a sack of doorknobs.

It was the kind of knockout that makes you think, okay, maybe now is the time for Drew to walk away. It’s not just that he’s already racked up a solid history of brain trauma. At this point, Fickett is only being used as a recognizable stepping-stone for regional talent, and the sole benefit for him being there is a modest paycheck. And if you watch the entire fight — where Fickett seems like he’s still trying to figure out the standup game, despite having over 60 pro fights to his credit — it’s clear that what Luis Felix did to him is just going to keep happening to Fickett if he keeps competing.

Anyway, kudos to this Luis Felix guy. But damn…anybody else get a case of the sads watching Fickett get dummied up like this?

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Proudly Presenting: UFC Veteran Drew Fickett Talks His First Year of Sobriety


(Image via Drew Fickett’s Facebook page.)

Via Sobriety Fighter 

For those uninitiated, Sobriety Fighter is my own side-project. I’ve dedicated 2013 to being a year-long experiment where I spend one year as a full-time fighter while also attempting to stay clean and sober. I can’t promise that I’ll be the next Elias Cepeda or that I’ll never relapse, but I can promise that I’ll do my absolute best for everyone. Most of the stuff I post isn’t particularly MMA-related, but this is. Enjoy. - [SethFalvo

(SF) How do you feel that the lifestyle of a professional fighter has enabled your addiction? 

(DF) I started fighting during the first broadcast of the Ultimate Fighter and remember seeing Chris Leben getting drunk and being stupid and then going in and training balls the next day hung over. I glorified that. Being able to fight hard and party hard. Train hard even when drunk and hung over appealed to my vikingesque nature. Pretty soon I developed a name in the sport for being a bad ass drunk who could fight.

I could fight and drink and even though it was very taxing I could pull it off and loved the type of image it gave me. I thought it was so cool. I used to associate airports and flying with drinking and pretty soon I couldn’t fly if I wasn’t tore up from the floor up. I don’t even understand how I would manage to make it from Point A to Point B, but I remember many flights missing my plane and ending up back at the airport pub for another Guinness or shot of Jack.  I can really relate to Josh Hamilton’s story because of our obvious similarities.

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Sad Knockout of the Day: Justin Gaethje Only Needs Twelve Seconds to Destroy Drew Fickett


Yep.

When we last checked in on Drew Fickett, he had moved from Arizona to Florida to enter a rehabilitation facility, and celebrated his forty-two days of sobriety with a knockout loss to Jonatas Novaes at ShoFIGHT 20. Not to add insult to injury, but Fickett said before the fight that he was in very real danger danger of becoming homeless if he didn’t receive his win bonus as well. I wish I was here today to tell you that things have gotten better for him, but that’s not exactly the case.

Fickett met up with undefeated Grudge Training Center prospect Justin Gaethje at last weekend’s Rage in the Cage 163. I’d describe the fight for you, but that’d be a waste of time. Let’s just say that Gaethje is still undefeated, Fickett is now 1-6 in his last seven fights and I’m only writing about this fight because I have lost control of my life.

Video is after the jump.

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ShoFIGHT 20 Recap: Grove is now Champion, Fickett is now Homeless

It’s easy- perhaps even a bit lazy- to compare the embattled MMA fighter Drew Fickett to the similarly troubled Scott Hall. In their primes, both men performed on their respective sport’s biggest stages against recognizable names. In Fickett’s case, this meant a run in the UFC and notable victories over Dennis Hallman, Kenny Florian, Josh Neer, Josh Koscheck and Kurt Pellegrino.

Yet it’s arguable that both men are more famous for their self-destructive, chaotic lifestyles outside of sport than they are for their accomplishments. Both men have well documented struggles with addiction, have been fired from major promotions over their drunken antics and have attempted to stay relevant in their respective sports with increasingly tragic results.

Case in point: Last night’s ShoFIGHT 20, which took place on the campus of Drury University in Springfield, Missouri. The show was essentially a who’s who of washouts from bigger promotions, which included (aside from Fickett) John Gunderson, Karo Parisyan, Kendall Grove, Lyle Beerbohm, Marcus Aurelio, Charles Bennett, “Smilin’” Sam Alvey and Roli Delgado. This card saw Fickett matched up against submission specialist Jonatas Novaes.

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“WMMA: McCorkle vs. Heden” — Big Sexy Gets TKO’d, Parisyan and Fancy Pants Win Big


(McCorkle vs. Heden round 1; round 2 is after the jump. Props: PVTHansen16)

Notably stacked for a regional card, Worldwide Mixed Martial Arts‘ debut event went down Saturday night in El Paso, Texas, and was highlighted by an upset in the main event and a handful of UFC vets smashing their way into the win column.

At this point, when Sean McCorkle gets booked against a smaller, doughier opponent with a journeyman’s record, we just assume that “Big Sexy” will bully his way to a first-round stoppage without much difficulty. But WMMA 1′s super-heavyweight main event didn’t go down like that. Though McCorkle (who tipped the scales at 312 pounds) came very close to finishing the 287-pound Brian Heden near the end of the first round, he blew his cardio wad in the process. With McCorkle barely able to lift his arms in round two, Heden was able to reverse a takedown, trap McCorkle’s left arm, and slug his way to a TKO victory. According to Danga, the announcer referred to the win as “the upset of the century.” (Somewhere, Gus Johnson is masturbating.) In a follow-up post on the UG, McCorkle lamented the cardio problems that have plagued his entire athletic career, credited Heden for showing up in “decent shape”* and vowed to retire if his cardio ever contributed to another loss.

In the co-main event, Karo Parisyan snapped a three-fight losing streak when he scored a unanimous decision over veteran Thomas Denny. Even more impressive, Drew Fickett snapped a four-fight losing streak when he choked out WEC/Bellator vet Kevin Knabjian, despite reports that Fickett was pretty well sauced throughout fight week. (Obviously, it could have been worse.)

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Heads Up: Parisyan, McCorkle, Beerbohm, Fickett, Buentello, Schoonover and Denny Are Fighting This Weekend in Texas


(Video courtesy of YouTube/WMMASPORTS1)

If you’re looking for an MMA fix to get you through until UFC 145, Worldwide Mixed Martial Arts is holding its inaugural show on Saturday in El Paso, Texas.

The promotion put together the pretty slick looking promo above for its McCorkle vs. Heden: Fighting For A Better World event that will see a portion of the proceeds from the show donated to the Wounded Warriors project.

In the main and co-main event of the evening, former UFC heavyweight Sean McCorkle will take on a somewhat unknown fighter by the name of Brian Heden and onetime UFC welterweight contender Karo Parisyan will face King of the Cage, EliteXC and MFC vet Thomas “Wildman” Denny. The event will be available for rent via pay-per-view.

During the promo, clips were shown of Parisyan’s first fight — a bare-knuckle scrap he had in Mexico when he was 14 against a 20-something local champion.

Check out the entire impressive fight by young Karo and the complete WMMA fight card after the jump.

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Video Roundup: The Fights Worth Watching from ONE FC 2 and XFC 16


Felipe Enomoto vs. Ole Laursen. All videos in this post props to IronForgesIron.com

It would be a real shame if you only remembered ONE FC 2 for the freak show that was Bob Sapp vs. Rolles Gracie. As is too often the case when events only get remembered for the freak show fight(s) that they hosted, the rest of the card had some legitimately entertaining fights. Four out of five of the main card’s bouts ended in submission, with Felipe Enomoto, Bae Young Kwon and Gustavo Falciroli all securing rear-naked chokes against their opponents. While Enomoto vs. Laursen may have been the most entertaining of the three, Bae Young Kwon’s victory came the earliest, securing the choke only fifty six seconds into the fight. Likewise, Gustavo Falciroli picked up a quick submission against Soo Chul Kim, who curiously enough seemed hesitant to stand up with the BJJ blackbelt.


Bae Young Kwon vs. Honorio Banario

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Parisyan vs. Menne, Beerbohm vs. Varner Added to March 31 ‘Worldwide MMA’ Event in Texas


(These two bouts alone beat most Strikeforce Challengers events.)

CagePotato.com has learned that a trio of bouts featuring UFC veterans has been added to Worldwide MMA’s debut card in El Paso, Texas.

Karo Parisyan (19-8-4 1 NC) versus Dave Menne (45-16-2), Lyle Beerbohm (16-2) versus Jamie Varner (18-6-1 2 NC) as well as Drew Fickett (41-16) versus Kevin Knabjian (12-6) will all take place at the March 31 event.

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DREAM Japan Bantamweight Grand Prix Final Goes Down in 10 Days

The dearth of awesome fan-made promos does not bode well for DREAM. VidProps: DREAM

DREAM returns for the final round of the Japan Bantamweight Grand Prix on July 16, and there are a few interesting matchups on the card (which is apparently *not* DREAM.17 as we’d been thinking). Even if there weren’t, it’s smack in the middle of the summer MMA doldrums, and there’s not much else going on. Even if there were something else going on, jesus, don’t you assholes care about Japan?

Come on in past the jump and we’ll fill you in on the bouts slated for the event, with a few notes for your enlightenment and/or entertainment. Just call us the love child of the Buddha and Louis CK.

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