Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Thorne Excited to Face “Big Name” in Ritch

By KOTC Staff  On November 21st Trent Thorne will look to keep building upon his largely successful 2010 campaign, as the middleweight will take on MMA pioneer Shannon “The Cannon” Ritch, at Edmonton’s Rexall Place. The past year has been a break-out one in many respects for Thorne, as the third year pro has not only gone 4-1, in July, he stopped Chad Frey for his first KO win.

“I think it’s a good fight for me,” said Thorne when asked for his thoughts on fighting the veteran Ritch, who has competed well over 100 times in his decade plus career.  “I was supposed to fight the guy he had his last win over, but for whatever reason that didn’t happen, so I figure why step back right? Might as well keep moving forward; he’s definitely a big name guy, and it will be the first time really I’ve ever fought someone of his calibre.”

While Ritch has incurred several losses under the KOTC Canada banner this year, after tapping out Elmer Waterhen at the promotion’s “Nailbiter” event in January, Thorne still believes the veteran is a dangerous opponent.

“I think he’s definitely a lot more well rounded than me,” Thorne noted. “He’s been around the block; some people have questioned his heart, and that’s something that I consider to be one of my biggest weapons. If he beats me, he’s going to have to really put it to me I think. I don’t really see it ending any other way. He’s going to have to choke me out cold or knock me out because that’s the only way I’m going to stop.”

Many of Ritch’s extensive victories have come way of first round submission; in particular, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt has shown a propensity for winning fights with heel hooks, toe holds and armbars.

“There’s no secret about what I’m going to try to do,” said Thorne, when asked about Ritch’s grappling abilities. “I’m going to stay off the ground and try to knock him out. I’m going to stick and move and hopefully land that big shot to put him out. I definitely don’t want to try to go skill for skill on the mat, as I’m just not the calibre that he is there, but I do think if it goes to the ground I’ll be quite a bit stronger than him.”

To prepare for his veteran opponent, Thorne continues to enlist the help of various fighters from Central Alberta, a region which continues to produce some of Canada’s more notable talent.

“I’ll be training with the same guys as usual,” Thorne said. “I’ll be training with Bill Mesi, Cody Krahn, and whoever else shows up at Pix. I’m hoping Jarid Bussemakers can give some tips because he beat him in the past. I’m hoping to step up my takedown defence because I think that’s been my biggest weakness in my last fights. Guys have been able to get me down on the ground and I have to also work on getting off my back. I’m also hoping to get some time in with some of the guys at the U of A wrestling team too.”

And finally, when asked to make a prediction on the November 21st bout, Thorne responded with:

“Knock out in the first round; it will be late in the first, but a knock out for sure.”

Some of the other bouts confirmed for the Rexall Place card include, Canadian middleweight champion Ryan Chiappe vs. UFC vet Joe Riggs, Canadian heavyweight champ Raphael Bergmann vs. former KOTC champion Tony Lopez, and Brad Stewart vs. Matt Baker.