Over the years more than a few prominent kickboxers have made the switch to MMA, but there has always been a mixed bag of results.

For every former champion like Maurice Smith, there’s also a name like Stefan Leko, who did quite well in kickboxing, but then stumbled, crashed and burned in his MMA career.

Over the past year, kickboxing powerhouse Tyrone Spong has been training his complete MMA game to ensure that he lands more on the Maurice Smith side of things and a little less on the Stefan Leko page. Spong has been a main training partner for the Blackzilians in Florida, where he works with fighters like Rashad Evans, Alistair Overeem and Anthony Johnson on a daily basis.

The training has paid off and Spong will finally make his MMA debut this Saturday night at World Series of Fighting.

“You’ve got to take your time to orientate yourself, what you’re getting yourself into. I’m a kickboxer, I’m a striker, so I had to work on my ground game and I wanted to take my time to do so. I’m not saying I’m a world class grappler or world class wrestler right now, but right now I’d say I understand the game good enough to put on a good show for the fans,” Spong answered when speaking to MMAWeekly Radio about why this is the right time for his debut.

Those who do not know history’s mistakes are doomed to repeat them.

Spong has studied that ideal quite a bit as he heads into his debut fight, and that’s why he put in more than a year of MMA training before officially making the move. He didn’t want to be another unsuccessful case of a kickboxer trying to make it in MMA.

Spong wants to be the new standard and not the exception to the rule.

“That’s why I took my time. I did my proper training with the right people. I’m not afraid to submit myself and listen because a lot of strikers are very hard headed, and if you’re a striker it’s kind of hard to do the ground stuff, and it’s kind of boring sometimes because you’re used to something else,” said Spong.

“I totally submitted myself to my coaches and my teammates, and listened to what I have to do. I was just a student. I just started from scratch.”

The training and time paid off, but Spong understands it’s all theoretical until he steps into the cage. If all of the work was done correctly, Spong believes every light heavyweight in the world should be worried about his entry into the sport.

“I’m a guy they should keep in mind,” said Spong. “I’m a threat to the 205-pound division.”

(Photo credit: Ryan Loco)

Watch the World Series of Fighting Prelims LIVE on MMAWeekly.com, Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Diego Sanchez: Matches to Make for Him in the Featherweight Division

  • 21 days ago
  • 10 views

Inactive since a controversial decision win over Ross Pearson 11 months ago, Diego Sanchez is planning a move down to 145 pounds. On The MMA Road Show, Diego Sanchez told John Morgan that he made the read news >>

John Dodson: 'I Am the Savior of the Flyweight Division'

  • 21 days ago
  • 1 views

The UFC has struggled to make fight fans care about the flyweight division, but John Dodson believes he's the solution to that problem. While the 125-pound fold is lined with talented fighters and cu read news >>

Jorge Masvidal: Matches to Make for Him in the Welterweight Division

  • 18 days ago
  • 5 views

For the first time since he battled Paul Daley in September 2010, Jorge Masvidal is planning to compete in the welterweight division. Masvidal's decision was revealed on "UFC Tonight" by Fox Sports 1 read news >>

Jussier Formiga says flyweight division needs a 'Conor McGregor' to make it interesting for casual fans

  • 13 days ago
  • 1 views

Flyweight contender Jussier Formiga doesn't think champion Demetrious Johnson is a good draw for the division and believes it's time for someone like Conor McGregor to take over as soon as possible. read news >>

Tyrone Spong to make MMA return at World Series of Fighting 22

  • 11 days ago
  • 50 views

Tyrone Spong is back. "The King of the Ring" will return to the MMA cage at World Series of Fighting 22 on Aug. 1 in Las Vegas, WSOF executive vice president Ali Abdel-Aziz told MMAFighting.com on Tu read news >>

Fan Perspective: Frankie Edgar shut out Urijah Faber, but what comes next for each fighter?

  • 5 days ago
  • 1 views

Frankie Edgar wanted to make a statement in his UFC Fight Night 66 bout with Urijah Faber. And while “The Answer” didn’t earn a finish, winning five rounds to none sure is impressive. But what comes read news >>

Chris Weidman Intends to Make a Statement by Finishing Vitor Belfort

  • 5 days ago
  • 14 views

Injuries have kept UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman sidelined since July 2014, but he plans to make a statement against Vitor Belfort at UFC 187. read news >>

UFC 186 Results: Matches to Make for the Winners and Losers

  • 28 days ago
  • 2 views

While Kyoji Horiguchi was nearly able to go the distance with him at UFC 186, Demetrious Johnson picked up his second straight submission win and defended his 125-pound championship. Mighty Mouse now read news >>

UFC releases statement on 'suspect' Jon Jones after hit-and-run car accident

  • 28 days ago
  • 493 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has its hands full with its uber-talented Light Heavyweight Champion, Jon Jones. Less than one month out from a world title fight against Anthony Johnson in the m read news >>