Trainer ‘Benkei’ Drops Anchor at Finney’s HIT Squad


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit
Known as the “Wizard of the Scale,” Andre “Benkei” Vinicius Aurnheimer Ferreira has worked with some of MMA’s most accomplished fighters: former EliteXC heavyweight champion Antonio Silva, two-time K-1 Hero’s tournament winner Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante and onetime Sengoku Raiden Championship middleweight titleholder Jorge Santiago.

Now, he has taken his expertise and experience to Finney’s H.I.T. Squad -- the gym founded and recently sold by former UFC welterweight king Matt Hughes in Granite City, Ill.

“There’s no other team in the U.S. where you can raise an athlete from the ground up,” Benkei told Sherdog.com. “In time, the structure of my professional team will bring back the love for team, and I assure you, it makes a big difference when they close the cage door. Many of those now crying for an apology from camps forgot their love for team and how much that mattered at places like [the] Chute Boxe [Academy] and Brazilian Top Team back during the Pride [Fighting Championships] days.”

Benkei -- who left American Top Team in 2008 -- chose the HIT Squad gym over Imperial Athletics in Boca Raton, Fla.

“I tried to assemble a team with the owners [at Imperial Athletics], but it wasn’t possible,” he said. “They found it cheaper to open a training camp, and that was not my goal. I believe in teamwork and structure, and I don’t believe the concept of teams in MMA is finished. Yes, we’re in a time of transition. Imperial is an open academy; I wanted to assemble a team. They stayed in tropical Florida, and I’m going into the cold to train warriors.”

Jesse Finney, a Strikeforce veteran who purchased the HIT Squad gym from Hughes, was instrumental in bringing Benkei to the Midwest.

“He wanted me to reassemble and adapt the team to modern MMA training,” Benkei said. “The idea is to work with the American wrestlers, as they are the base of the team, and bring in some fighters from Brazil and Europe to raise the level of ground fighting and striking.”

Benkei admits he will lean heavily on previous experience.

“Working for such a long time with MMA schools like American Top Team was important for me in getting this opportunity,” he said. “I lived with fighters from around the world, and that gave me the vision of global training I have today. My dream is to bring together on a single team the strong mind of the American wrestler, the technique of Brazilian jiu-jitsu, the explosion of Dutch kickboxing and the serenity of Japanese judo.

“There are so many combinations of martial arts that are only possible in this sport,” Benkei added. “Let’s attract these values from all around the world and work them in combination under the structure of the HIT Squad.”

view original article >>

Related News

  • 21 days ago
  • 49 views

Bold statement, but as the much-improved striker Ronda Rousey proved at UFC 175, her hands aren't to be ignored. Ronda Rousey defended her Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) women's bantamweight title for the fourth straight time this past weekend (Sat., July 5, 2014) in the co-main event of UFC 175 in Las Vegas, Nevada, obliterating Alexis Davis in a mere 16 seconds (recap).
In the first exchange, "Rowdy" clipped Davis with a straight right hand that dazed the jiu-jitsu black belt, and follow more

  • 16 days ago
  • 31 views

Metamoris has released the countdown video for what will serve as the main event at Metamoris 4 on August 9th: former UFC middleweight and light heavyweight Chael Sonnen vs. ADCC gold medalist and 2008 IBJJF world champion Andre Galvao in a submission-only, 20-minute grappling match.
Metamoris 4 takes place at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, CA and will stream live as an online pay-per-view for $20 at Metamoris.com. The full card for that event is as follows: Chael Sonnen vs. Andr more

  • 29 days ago
  • 57 views

Pat Miletich is the latest inductee to the UFC Hall of Fame.
UFC president Dana White confirmed the news, which has been rumored for the past several days, to MMAFighting.com on Tuesday.
The 48-year old Miletich had an almost incalculable influence on the sport of mixed martial arts, first as one of the sport's great fighters and then as the head of one of the first true elite MMA gyms.
The pride of Bettendorf, Iowa was the first holder of what is now known as the UFC welterweight title, current more

  • 29 days ago
  • 34 views

One of the more time-honored ways of conveying an intent to do harm is to say you want to "beat the piss" out of someone. Depending on your taste in flourishes, sometimes there’s an adjective attached for emphasis…such as, "I want to beat the living piss" out of someone.At any rate, this is usually an empty threat. But in the case of Justin Gaethje, who during his summers between collegiate wrestling took amateur cage fights to see how he liked it, well, he can boast of doing just that. In his f more

  • 29 days ago
  • 5 views

On this week's edition of Shameless MMA, the guys talk with Jason "The Dragon" Lee and Joe Guerrero. Topics include a recap of some of the UFC Fight Night action, a look into UFC 175, and will we ever see Gina Carano and Holly Holm in the UFC? more

  • 29 days ago
  • 42 views

Sexy Arianny Celeste bikini photos gallery from Fitness Gurls 2014 Swimsuit Issue, featuring 15 pics of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Octagon Girl on the beach rocking a sizzling bikini in the magazine's July offering. more

  • 29 days ago
  • 41 views

Because as the nutrition expert put it, fighters like Kelvin Gastelum are paying 20 percent to someone just to answer a phone call from Joe Silva, instead of paying the proper coaching staff which actually helps them prepare to win a fight. Kelvin Gastelum failed to make weight in his third trip to welterweight this past weekend (Sat., June 28, 2014) prior to his fight against Nicholas Musoke at UFC Fight Night 44 in San Antonio, Texas.
A blunder that cost The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 17 wi more

  • 29 days ago
  • 34 views

In the 197 pound quarterfinals of the 2006 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championship, current UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman defeated future UFC light heavyweight contender Ryan Bader in a wild 10-7 match. Bloody Elbow has acquired rare footage of this match.
In the quarterfinals of the 2006 NCAA Wrestling Championships, Hofstra's unranked and unseeded Chris Weidman pulled off a shocking upset of Arizona State's returning All-American Ryan Bader. Weidman won an action-packed match to advan more

  • 29 days ago
  • 24 views

Administering that test will be Andre Galvao, according to the promotion.
Chael Sonnen is still employed.
He may no longer be working for Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) -- or the FOX network -- but the embattled mixed martial arts (MMA) veteran still has a job with Metamoris, the west coast jiu-jitsu promotion that pegged him as event headliner for later this summer (details).
And according to officials, Sonnen will definitely be tested. "@T_RAV_4real: @MetamorisPro is Sonnen still on the more