Inside MMA - YourMMA.tv's Jay Furness
I’d love to start off my blogging escapades here at Fightstore Pro by giving it a big dose of “people know me” a la Ron Burgundy, but I’m not that conceited so I’ll just tell you instead. If you follow mixed martial arts in the UK to some degree then you may have read some articles or perused the rankings on www.YourMMA.tv, of which I am the editor, day-to-day scribe, and chief podcaster. Those that go further back might remember my time with MMA Unltd, the now defunct UK MMA magazine that was all kinds of awesome (so much so we even dabbled again at Your MMA, though without the same longevity). If you’ve fought yourself, are part of a UK MMA team, or have watched your mate kick someone in down at the local sports hall, you may have seen me officiate, and potentially even heard my soothing Yorkshire tones call the action on YouTube or an obscure Sky TV channel. I’ve also had, and continue to have, my own dabbles in the cage from time to time. I first competed back in 2008 and had fifteen or so fights as an amateur. I decided to try out the professional ranks in 2010, and I’ve been lucky enough to have some excellent opportunities, fight around the world, and take to the cage with some top athletes. I’m also passionate about passing on what little knowledge I have to the next generation and enjoy coaching at my team, AVT; getting fulfilment from the little things such as watching a new guy hit his first submission, or introducing a subtle change to someone’s top game that works for them instantly. Through various roles I’ve kept my hand in mixed martial arts non-stop since I found the sport properly almost a decade ago. I guess I had a similar original exposure to most people of my age (no, not the old chap in the bush) when ‘The World’s Most Dangerous Man’ Ken Shamrock entered the WWF in his tight red trunks. It made made me want to footlock everybody in the playground and piqued my interest, but rugby, boxing and being a pubescent boy got in the way. I’d watched some fights on the burgeoning internet, but it became a real fascination quite a few years later. I’ve worked with promotions and for promotions, with media outlets and as a media outlet, and I’ve also worked with and for MMA brands. There aren’t many angles I haven’t seen and I like to think my innate scepticism gives me a unique and honest perspective on the sport. It puts me in a position whereby, by some odd occurrence, I happened to become somewhat of a respected voice in domestic circles. For better or for worse, occasionally people will listen to what “that Northern idiot” says. I’ll be stopping by here regularly to cover a bunch of topics with regards to the UK MMA community and the fight game in general. Ever wonder what goes on behind the scenes at fight shows? I can shed some light on that for you. Who's in, who's out, who is making moves and who is letting it slide? What do certain 'strategic allegiances' really mean? Is it as glamorous inside a fight camp as people like to think? Those just a few areas we'll be looking at. There are going to more relevant and topical stories coming up as we move forward and we can also tackle those head on, with a view from the inside. I’m accessible on Facebook and Twitter, mostly because I’m not popular enough to be inundated with mentions or comments so I can respond. They’re good channels if you want to suggest any topics, drop any knowledge bombs, or call me names. As far as introductions go I think I’ve babbled on enough so, until my next instalment, I’ll either see you on the front lines or rendezvous back here when there’s something more interesting to say. If you want to catch up on some old blogs, then take a look HERE.
- Alex Wright