Wednesday, September 1, 2010

“New and Improved” Shannon Ritch Ready for Sept. 18th

By KOTC Staff    Despite being one of mixed-martial-arts most experienced fighters, Shannon “The Cannon” Ritch recently decided it was time to make some serious changes to his training regiment, in an effort to turn some heads throughout the sport as his 40th birthday approaches. The 100 fight plus veteran will get an opportunity to showcase the benefits of the recent changes soon enough, when Ritch faces Chris Kizuik at King of the Cage Canada’s upcoming September 18th card, in Cold Lake, Alberta.

“What’s really good about me now is that I’ll be 40 years old September 27th and I have totally changed up my entire camp,” said Ritch, whose last KOTC win came in January, when he tapped out Elmer Waterhen in the first round. “I’ve got a new manager, new trainer, new training partners; I am coming in to my own close to the end of my career. When you guys see me fight September 18th you’re going to see the new and improved Shannon “The Cannon.” I’m coming out with a vengeance; I want the end of my career to be nothing but wins.”

“I’ve got a strength and conditioning coach now; first time in my life that I’ve had a strength and conditioning coach,” added Ritch, who in his last KOTC appearance was stopped by current Canadian welterweight champion Garett Davis. “I have a coach coming in not only to show me what to eat but when to eat; how to train. Not the boxing, jiu-jitsu training, I’m talking about serious interval training, cardio training; everything I’m doing I’m doing for a purpose. It’s an amazing work out man.”

While Ritch has been fighting professionally since 1998, and has faced a long list of notable fighters including Kazushi Sakuraba, Jake Shields, and “Pele” Landi-Jons amongst many others, Kizuik began fighting professionally in MMA earlier this year. Although Ritch concedes he doesn’t know anything about the undefeated fighter, he’s expecting a tough battle come September 18th.

“I haven’t been able to find anything out about him,” said Ritch about Kizuik, who is coming off a first round submission win over Jeremiah Simonar, at KOTC Canada’s recent “Lockdown” event. “I look at it like this man, anybody in MMA right now that’s been fighting, they’re well rounded; they’re going to be a good kickboxer, good boxer, a good ground guy, so I’m just training for everything.”

“It may,” Ritch said, when asked if he might be at a disadvantage at times, that fighters can easily access footage and information about him, while sometimes the veteran is unable to find out much about his opponent. “Like I said before though; MMA is MMA, it is what it is. You’re going to have guys that are good at kickboxing, jiu-jitsu, boxing; I’m ready for everything.”

Ritch was quick to concede that he’s excited to be returning to Canada for another bout with KOTC, and when asked particularly about fighting in Cold Lake, a community with well established ties to the Canadian military, the BJJ black belt stated:

“Well I’m expecting a military crowd which is awesome for me,” Ritch noted. “I’m former military; I’ve fought in Iraq, I’ve been there, I know what military fans are looking for so I’m coming in with the red, white and blue, the stripes, and I’m going to put on a show for the military guys. I respect them a lot and hopefully they’re going to respect me.”

“Sentinel”, which will be hosted by Cold Lake’s Energy Center, will also feature a bout between rising middleweight Trent Thorne and resilient veteran Elmer Waterhen.