Thursday, January 27th, 2011
KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI: January 27th, 2011; Location, the Constellations Room
in the Argosy Casino. We are at the weigh in for the Titan event taking place
tomorrow Friday the 28th of January in near by Kansas City, Kansas at the
Memorial Hall. All fighters made weight.
The crowd filled the room to capacity in anticipation of the fights and of
course hoping for displays of machismo at the face offs and to possibly hear
any pre-fight rumors. Also to see how the fighters look and sounded after
dropping weight if they needed to.
As I approached the event I simply followed the crowd of tattooed guys in Tap
Out and Affliction shirts right to the place I wanted to be. The first
fighter I saw was Frank Trigg. Going back over my mental notes his appearance
was not announced or hyped at all. I wondered if he was cornering a fighter
or if possible announcing his joining Titan. Purely speculation from me.
Then I remembered Phil Baroni was to be in attendance. What a fight that
would be if possible. Again, just speculation from this writer seeing both
guys at the Titan event weigh ins.
The big name on the card, Tim Sylvia weighed in at 311. Tim was upbeat and
feeling optimistic as he watched the other fighters weigh in and dealt very
professionally and patiently with fans seeking acknowledgement an autograph or
handshake from the former 2x Heavyweight UFC Champion. Tim was feeling lucky
too because as he drove in today for the fights he got pulled over by MO
Highway Patrol and got off without any incident.
When Sylvia was asked about the upcoming Heavyweight Tournament with
Strikeforce, Tim said he was excited and will watch what he can and maybe try
to attend one of the events. When pushed to pick a winner the “Maineiac”
picked Josh Barnett. Tim said, he likes Barnett to make it to the final
fight, he added that he and Barnett use to be friends when they wrestled in
Tim said his training for the fight went well, taking place in Indiana and he
was looking forward to tomorrow nights fights.
Abe Wagner Tim’s opponent said he was feeling good, had a great camp and was
training at MidAmerica MMA for the fight. He was in fantastic looking shape.
Deryck Ripley, a local KC fighter was looking fit and ready at the weigh ins.
He said he took the fight on late notice but is ready to fight “Zo Daddy”
Martinez due to him helping train LC Davis for a fight on this same card. LC
Davis had to pull out due to injury. Deryck has respect for his opponent and
his 27 & 14 record but feels confident in his skills to deliver a win on
Rich “No Love” Clementi looked in fantastic shape as he weighed in. His
opponent, 8 and 2 Aaron Derrow, looked half his age. Rich being the more
experienced fighter has 5x the amount of fights that Derrow has.
Clementi says his school keeps him in shape and that his regular training does
not differentiate that much from when he prepares for fights. On the lighter
side, this New Jersey boy living in New Orleans said he is relived that Saints
football is over for the year so the classes will return to normal on Sunday
at his school. He states that while living in New Orleans, that he has never
been pulled over or hassled by Steven Seagal of “Steven Seagal Lawman”
fame that films near his home.
Rich says he still loves this sport and part of the fun is always leaning new
things. He took part in “A fight for the Troops” this month and picked up
3 new moves while training with the military folks. He will be cornered by
Monte Cox on Friday.
The last fighter we spent time with at the weigh ins was the “NYBA” Phil
Baroni. After welcoming him to KC and to Titan we asked who he wants to fight
on the next card March 25. Baroni said “Anyone that wants to step up.”
He added when asked about Trigg “ Trigg and I are friends and he is not
somebody I am looking to fight but business is business.” Again, the Trigg
comments are simply due to this writer seeing Trigg at the event. We tossed a
few random questions at Phil to see how his mood was and to see what kind of
answers we could get. We asked if he was still driving the infamous Buick he
highlighted from an interview he did a few years ago, indeed he confirmed he
does. He sort of laughed a little at the question but being such a down to
Earth guy he tolerated our question. When asked if he would ever want a cushy
job like Chuck Liddell has now at the UFC and he said emphatically “No”.
He expressed “I want to keep this fight thing going till the wheels fall
off.” Phil was clearly a fan favorite in the room. He finished his evening
in the Argosy by signing autographs and posing for pictures.
The event is tomorrow, tickets are still available. The fight card looks
stacked and exciting. The Official Tim Sylvia after fight party is at Dluxe
Lounge & Cigar Deck in Parkville, MO. This is a fight card that includes a
lot of bigger named fighters and the MMA fans in KC are very lucky to have
Titan doing events here.
2011 Copyright Mike Phillips