If you read my recent column in MMA Worldwide Magazine about the top five reasons to see a local MMA event, you would recall that watching fighters grow and evolve was one of the reasons. If you did not read the article, you suck and can only stop sucking once you buy a copy of the magazine and read my article, especially if you are one of those fans who has yet to go to a small MMA show and have only stuck to watching UFC or Strikeforce programming.
Warren Piece, MMA blogger and former co-host of Fight Nerd Radio (AKA the podcast I have neglected to do for awhile since it’s so gosh darn time consuming), embodies that pillar in my top five, as he had the chance to not just watch a fighter grow, but watch a longtime friend of his grow and become a better person. Warren sent us a brief synopsis and a small video (after the jump) of being in attendance for the professional MMA debut of his friend, Peter Simone.
Hit the jump for some of Warren’s thoughts on the event and seeing his friend live his dreams!
BY WARREN PIECE
I’ve been a hardcoreish Mixed Martial Arts fan for years and was a part-time-MMA-blogger for one (see www.newyorkfightscene.com), but until now I’ve never seen a friend of mine fight.
Peter Simone made and won his pro debut this past Saturday, May 15th, at Washington Combat’s “Battle of the Legends” event at the DC Armory. Peter prevailed via unanimous decision over a game opponent in
Francisco Salgueiro. The keys to victory: unanswered takedowns and a granite chin.
Peter’s training history is as solid as that chin. Simone is a brown belt in Jiu-Jitsu under Prof. Sean Alvarez of Gracie Barra of Westchester, NY. And in November, 2009, Peter headed west to Las Vegas to compete in an open tryout for Wanderlei Silva’s “Wand Fight Team”. Pete made the squad, moved to Sin City within 2 months and has been training with Wandy and co. since.
The sub-story here (for me) is one of family, friendship and loyalty. North Salem and SUNY Albany represented…hard.
PS: Other fighters won and lost at the event, but I wasn’t paying attention. I believe Gary Goodridge quit after 2 rounds in the main event against Pedro Rizzo (way to set an example of heart for the newbies), but I can’t be sure as I was called outside to save my wife from a DC weirdo.