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Posts Tagged ‘arts’

Fredrick Schroeder CIA Fighter Pilot?

In Uncategorized on February 17, 2016 at 2:07 pm

Fred Coward 2

Fredrick Schroeder, formerly a pilot for Shenzhen Airlines, now claims to be flying combat missions in Libya. To obtain this position, Schroeder claims he had to be approved by both the FBI and CIA. If the story is a lie, then he is grossly delusional. If it is true, I suspect he shouldn’t be telling people about it.

If you’ve been following the sad tale of Fred Schroeder over the last three years, you would know he agreed to fight me, but backed out 27 times. At least three of those fights were pro fights, two of which, tickets were already on sale for, another one was a TV fight. Apparently somewhere between talking on the internet and actually showing up and fighting, Fred’s balls took a detour. In between each of these fights he sends me messages and calls me telling me that satan is raping my mother who died when I was a baby. He also said he dug up her corpse and raped it. He insults the Christian religion and tells me that he is God. As payment for agreeing to show up for one of our fights, he asked for a photo of my dead mother which he then defiled and emailed back to me. On another occasion he asked for the location of her grave so he could “drop a deuce on it”. Through this entire process, he has maintained the fiction that he can beat me easily and that he is not afraid of me. He has said repeatedly that he will kill me and rape me, although he never shows up for these fights.

At one point, Fred told me that he had moved to Khartoum to work as a pilot. A few months ago, there was an internet rumor that he had gone to somewhere in the Middle East to be a combat pilot, having lied about his qualifications. The story said that it didn’t take his employers long to find out he was unqualified, and he was fired. More recently, he told me directly that he was flying combat missions in Libya and that he had to be approved by both the CIA and FBI. Fred also said that his social media was being monitored and that I would be in trouble for asking why he has never showed up at any of our scheduled fights. On the same, allegedly, monitored social media, he threatened my life, agreed to fight and backed out, and said something violently sexual about my mother and some of my friends. if his social media is being monitored it is obviously not monitored for morality.

A military psychiatrist reviewed a collection of the messages which Fred sent me and his determination was that Fred is seriously disturbed and shouldn’t be flying a plane. Fred’s ex-friend from high school reported Fred to the FAA and said that he was unfit to fly. The friend then told me that Fred is bi-polar. When I asked Fred if his new employers were aware of his being bi-polar and if they were fine with that, he said that they were aware and that they “don’t care.”

The transcript of the latest social media exchanges are available upon request. Previous exchanges, insults, threats, and fight dates are available online simply by Googling Fred Pilot Schroeder, the coward.

Will Fred ever fight me? Is he a CIA operative? Is his cover blown? Will the FAA finally realize that he is incredibly disturbed and pull his license? Stay tuned to find out.
Hey Fred Schroeder, please fight Antonio “Brooklyn Monk” Graceffo

Martial Arts Odyssey: Muay Boran 1

In Uncategorized on November 21, 2015 at 7:46 am

Before there was sport Muay Thai there was ancient Muay Thai, Muay Boran. Modern sport Muay Thai contains about 20 movements. Muay Boran contains hundreds. In the 1920’s when Muay Thai was codified as a modern sport His Majesty the King called the great masters together to write a book of modern Muay Thai. All of the techniques in that book have been recorded for history. All of the techniques excluded from the book are considered Muay Boran. Unfortunately, Muay Boran has never been codified. So, different masters know different techniques. Fighting Muay Thai is a way of earning a living in Thailand, but there are no Muay Boran fights. Consequently, young people abandoned the study of the art. Most masters haven’t passed on their skills to a younger generation. And now, most of the masters are old, dead, or dying. As a result, Muay boran is an endangered art. The master featured in this video is Adjan Sok Chai from Surin, Thailand, the first teacher of film star Tony Jaa. He can be seen in many of Tony Jaa’s movies, wearing almost the same clothes he wears in the video, the clothes he wears every day.
Martial Arts Odyssey: Muay Boran 1

Martial Arts Odyssey Re-Release (Part 1)

In Uncategorized on November 15, 2015 at 4:22 pm

Back to the beginning, rereleasing all of the videos
By Antonio Graceffo

Martial Arts Odyssey, the video series which follows the Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo on his journey through martial arts across Asia has been running since 2007. The video series grew out of a series of magazine articles and books which began in 2001, when Antonio left New York to go to Taiwan, learn Kung Fu and Mandarin and then train at the Shaolin Temple in Mainland China.

Since the beginning there have been about 400 martial arts videos, featuring the Monk studying diverse martial arts, such as Kuntaw in the Philippines, Muay Chaiya in Thailand, Selambam in Penang, Vo Co Truen in Vietnam, Bokator in Cambodia, shuai jiao in China and many, many more.

In order to share all of these wonderful martial arts with a new generation of fans, Antonio is rereleasing the episodes, in the order in which they were originally released, at a rate of one per day.

MAO: Kuntaw in the Philippines was the first episode shot and the first episode released, in 2007. At that time, Antonio didn’t even own a video camera, so the video was shot and edited by a TV crew in the Philippines. This video features Grand Master Frank Aycocho.

Digging for the Truth: Angkor Wat, from the Philippines, Antonio flew to Siem Reap Cambodia, where he and his Bokator instructor Grand Master San Kim Saen collaborated with a New York based film crew to shoot this documentary about the traditional Cambodian martial art, Bokator.

Between 2007 and 2008 numerous episodes were shot with borrowed equipment, but Antonio lacked expertise and money for editing, so the tapes collected in a backpack until late 2008 when they were finally edited and released, but not in the order in which they were shot. The third episode to air was MAO: Training with the Shan State Army 1, which was shot in 2007.

This video was shot in Burma during the saffron revolution when foreigners were banned from entering Burma. It is thought to be the first video ever to feature the kung fu of the Shan ethnic group, called Lai Tai. MAO Laitai 1

Pra Kru Bah, the muay Thai monk is the abbot of the Golden Horse Monastary, Wat Achatong on the Thai Burma border. In 2003 he took Antonio in and became Antonio’s first Muay Thai teacher. He taught Antonio Muay Thai, Thai language, and Thai culture. It was in this monastery that Antonio first heard about the war in Burma and vowed to someday help the Shan people. Prah Kru Bah Story Part 1

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a lecturer at Shanghai University. He is also a PhD candidate at Shanghai University of sport, writing his dissertation on comparative forms of Chinese wrestling, in Chinese, with expected graduation in June of 2016. He is expected to graduate his China MBA, from Shanghai Jiaotong University, in January, 2016. Antonio is the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey”, “The Monk from Brooklyn,” and several others. He has published hundreds of articles in the fields of linguistics: second language acquisition, as well as martial arts. Antonio is the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
The Monk from Brooklyn, the book which gave Antonio his name, and all of his other books, the book available at amazon.com. His book, Warrior Odyssey, chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia, including stories about Khmer and Vietnamese martial arts as well as the war in Burma and the Shan State Army, is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Brooklyn-Monk/152520701445654?fref=ts
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

The Never Ending Bokator Argument

In Uncategorized on September 5, 2015 at 9:43 am

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By Antonio Graceffo

A friend sent me a Phnom Penh Post story about yutakhun khom the traditional Khmer martial art of Master Chan Boeunthoeun. In the article, Chan Boeunthoeun claims that his martial art is older and more authentic than the Bokator of Grand Master San Kim Saen. Chan Boeunthoeun has apparently gone so far as to solicit UNESCO to remove Bokator from the Intangible Cultural Heritage, martial arts list, in favor of his yuthakhun Khom. The whole argument is preposterous on so many levels. But before I explain how baseless this argument is, let me first say one thing. I have huge respect for Chan Boeunthoeun who taught his son Chan Rothana to combine traditional Khmer martial arts with bradal serey kick boxing, which Chan Rothana then used, successfully, in over 90 professional bradal serey kick boxing fights. Chan Rothana even used a combination of traditional Khmer techniques, plus bradal serey and some modern MMA to become a One FC fighter and to amass a professional MMA record of 3 wins and 1 loss.

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There should be no question about Chan Rothana’s courage, or the fighting effectiveness of his martial. He definitely walks the walk. And I respect that. But there is no evidence of any kind to prove that yutakhun khom is older than Bokator or that the word yutakhun khom even existed prior to 2012.

Leading up to 2004, Chan Boeunthoeun used to be friends with Bokator Grand Master, San Kim Saen. They had both been part of the Hopkido federation and worked together to found the original Bokator Federation in 2004. They then had a falling out, and Chan Boeunthoeun left (or was asked to leave) the Bokator federation. Chan Boeunthoeun continued to teach Bokator out of his home until about 2012, when he suddenly decided that he was one of the two last remaining masters of yutakhun khom, which he claimed was the real Khmer traditional martial art.

In 2012, The National Olympic Committee of Cambodia, working together with Grand Master San Kim Saen, managed to get Bokator recognized by UNESCO on the Intangible Cultural Heritage, martial arts list. Before 2012, Cambodia had NOTHING on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, martial arts list. Thailand had Muay Thai. Japan had Judo. Korea had Taekkyeon, but Cambodia had no official martial art until 2012, when the Bokator of Grand Master San Kim Saen was recognized. Since then, a number of other Cambodians have suddenly come forward, claiming to be teaching even older styles of Cambodian martial arts. In 2004, most of those masters, including Chan Boeunthoeun, were at the national meeting in Phnom Penh when the Bokator association was founded. Many of them were founding members of Bokator. So, if they actually knew of some other, older, better martial art, why did they wait until 2012 to talk about it?

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A Google search for “yutakhun khom” revealed the earliest online mention of the art was a post in a Sherdog.com forum in 2012.

The Phnom Penh Post story had this quote from Benoit Rigallaud, the manager of Chan Rothana and owner of the studio where yutakhun khom is taught, “’UNESCO giving bokator Intangible Heritage Asset status was a concern to the yutakhun khom community, and should be to all Cambodians, because ‘they failed to conduct a full investigation”’” Full investigation! Of what? The only evidence yutakhun khom has is the legend of a magical book of the ancient martial arts techniques which was allegedly hidden for Centuries and then finally destroyed by the Khmer Rouge.

Is it possible that someone who has a financial interest in yutakhun khom being recognized has a slightly biased opinion? And, when did opinion become fact? There doesn’t seem to be a shred of evidence to support the claims of yutakhun khom having existed. In fact the word does not appear in the 1936 dictionary of the Khmer language. Neither are there any ancient writings using that word, apart from the magical book which was destroyed by the Khmer Rouge.

Another quote from Benoit Rigallaud, “This is crazy, because we are talking about history and culture here, and if heritage is lost then it is gone forever.” If Benoit Rigallaud and Chan Boeunthoeun succeed in getting Bokator removed from the UNESCO list, then Cambodia will be losing its cultural heritage. And I agree, that is crazy.

As for the “history” of Bokator, I interviewed Chan Boeunthoeun, the first time, in 2007 in connection with the TV show, Human Weapon. At that time, Chan Boeunthoeun still called his style Bokator. He mentioned the book which had been destroyed as proof of the art. While telling me the history of Bokator, he told me that King Jayavarman VII, the patron of Bokator, and now apparently of yutakhun khom, and Bodhidharma (Da Mo) the founder of Shaolin Kung Fu, were “classmates.” According to Chan Boeunthoeun, Bodhidharma was Khmer, not Indian. Next, he said that King Jayavarman VII taught Bokator to Bodhidharma and Bodhidharma brought Bokator to China and called it Kung Fu. This story astounded me, given that Bodhidharma lived during the 5th and 6th Centuries and King Jayavarman VII lived during the 12th and 13th. When I asked him why history had recorded the story differently, he blamed Thailand. Those damned Thais and their political influence! They got the entire world to change the history of both India and China, just to repress the Khmer martial art of yutakhun khom.

Chan Boeunthoeun’s story, since 2012, has been that he has been teaching yutakhun khom all along and that it was yutakhun khom that King Jayavarman VII supported and that it was yutakhun khom that was in the ancient book which was destroyed.

According to the Phnom Penh Post story, “Boeunthoeun claims yutakhun khom dates back 2,000 years to the Funan kingdom of Southeast Asia, but it was King Jayavarman VII at the height of the Khmer Angkorian empire nearly 1,000 years ago who could be credited with cementing the yuthakun khom philosophy that survives to this day.”” This is the exact same story that has been told about Bokator. And, there is no evidence of either the word Bokator or yuthakun khom in any historical document in Cambodia. During the nearly ten years that I researched my book on Khmer martial arts, I also searched French documents. I searched in Thailand, Lao, and Burma. I spoke to Khmer martial arts teachers and students in USA, Australia, Canada, and Europe. And NO ONE had a book. No one had any evidence of any kind. And during those first many years, pre 2012, I never heard the word yuthakun khom. In fairness, I did here the word yuthakun used for martial art. And there was a yuthakun martial arts club that trained at the techno university in Phnom Penh. But their martial art was admittedly synthetic. They never claimed it to be original Khmer. It was basically a mix of everything from Khmer to karate, to taekwondo and even kung fu and probably judo.

But not one person I interviewed, including Chan Boeunthoeun used the term yuthakun khom.

Given the complete lack of evidence, it would seem more constructive for Khmer people to be happy that they made it to the UNESCO list at all. They should support the traditional martial art, whether it is called Bokator or yuthakun khom, and simply move on. There are so many other problems in the country which need to be addressed before tearing down work that has already been done and replacing it.

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo holds a black krama in Khmer martial arts. He is the author of the book, Khun Khmer: Cambodian Martial Arts Journey. He works as a lecturer at Shanghai University. He is also a PhD candidate at Shanghai University of sport, writing his dissertation on comparative forms of Chinese wrestling. He is expected to graduate his China MBA, from Shanghai Jiaotong University, and his PhD in Spring, 2016. Antonio is also a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia, the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.

The Monk from Brooklyn, the book which gave Antonio his name, and all of his other books, the book available at amazon.com. His book, Warrior Odyssey, chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia, including stories about Khmer and Vietnamese martial arts as well as the war in Burma and the Shan State Army, is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey

See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Brooklyn-Monk/152520701445654?fref=ts
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

The Myth of MMA Fighting Out of Poverty

In Uncategorized on September 3, 2015 at 2:03 pm

By Antonio Graceffo

Rocky Marciano was born poor and died rich. But that was boxing, not MMA.

In 2011 when I took the Cambodian team to fight MMA the first professional tournament in Malaysia, a lot of people were putting pressure on me to sign them to one of Asia’s most prestigious MMA promotions, even though the Cambodians had no way to train, learn ground fighting or even eat. I still remember a number of people using the phrase “A chance to fight their way out of poverty.” The terms of the contract were 3 fights at $300 per fight. I don’t know where those people learned their economics, but where I studied, I learned that $900 USD a year isn’t exactly a ticket out of poverty. The counter argument was always, “But if they win, they could get more on their next fight.” How much more? Double? Triple? Quadruple? That still qualifies as poverty.

In MMA even top fighters will only have a handful of fights at the tens-or-hundreds-of-thousands-of-dollars level. This is true even of the Ultimate Fighting Championships (UFC), which is generally thought to be the best paying promotion in the world.

My theory is that, while it is hard to become rich in other sports, it is nearly impossible to even earn a living in MMA.

MMA Compared to Other Sports

By this point, most people probably know that MMA fighters are paid less than professional athletes in most other televised sports. The three boxers with the highest lifetime earnings are Floyd Mayweather Jr. with $756 million, Oscar De La Hoya with $696 million, and in third place, Manny Pacquiao with $661 million. (Cramer).
The three top earners in pro wrestling earned quite a bit less: The Rock, with $70 Million, Steve Austin with $45 Million, and John Cena with $35 Million. (Campbell)

As amazing as the lifetime earnings are for the outstanding boxers and wrestlers, the average salary for a major league baseball player in 2014 was $3.82 million. (Badenhausen) And basketball pays even better than baseball. The average NBA player, for example, earns $4.5 million per year. (Gaines) Because of the higher pay and longer playing life, the lifetime earnings of basketball players exceed those of most other pro athletes. The average NBA player plays 4.8 years and has lifetime career earnings of $24.7 million. (Gaines) In the history of the NBA, 25 players have had lifetime earnings of over 125 Million each. (Gaines)

While it is obvious that ball players and champion boxers earn a lot, what about an average boxer? According to The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, people who list professional boxer as their profession on their tax return earned an average of $75,760 in 2012. (Guerra) That’s a lot lower than Floyde Mayweather, but still nearly double the lifetime earnings of the average MMA fighter.

The expected lifetime earnings of a professional MMA fighter are $38,000. (Shmoop)

MMA earnings are low compared to what?

Obviously, not everyone can be a top ball player or a professional boxing champion, but MMA is not even a good career when compared to other jobs. In 2013, the average high school teacher earned $55,360, with the bottom 10% earning $37,230.
(Money.usnews.com) Said another way, the lowest paid high school teacher’s earnings for a single year were nearly equal to the lifetime earnings of the average MMA fighter.

Of course, being a high school teacher necessitates earning a university degree, which some fighters feel they can’t do. But other careers also pay infinitely better than MMA fighting. In 2013, police officers averaged $90,700, with the bottom 10% earning $32,670. (Money.usnews.com)

Not everyone can get on a well-paid police force. But nearly anyone who is healthy, free of felony convictions, and has a high school diploma can join the army. The average salary for a solider is $21,032 – $76,175 (Army, U.S.) Maybe you don’t want to join the army. Fine, you could be an auto mechanic. The salary for a mechanic ranged from $20,920 to $61,210, with an average salary of $36,710, in 2013. (Money.usnews.com) Ok, let’s say, you’re a convicted felon, with no high school diploma, who is unable to learn to be an auto mechanic. Fine, you can work in fast food. The average salary for a fast food crew member was $16,000 per year. (Indeed.com)

Therefore, if you’ve been paying attention, the lifetime earnings of the average MMA fighter is about the same as what the average McDonalds worker earns in a little over two years.

UFC Earnings

Most MMA fighters aspire to fight in the UFC, the most prestigious MMA organization in the world. But even in the UFC, the average fighter barely earns a living. According to an article published in the MMA Sentinel, the average wage for a UFC fighter is just $30,500 per year. (MMA Sentinel) “The 18 fighters in the nine undercard bouts at UFC 162 were paid a disclosed total of $1.167 million, an average of $64,833.33 per man.” (Iole)

Through 2014, the top three lifetime earners in UFC were Michael Bisping $5,694,000, Anderson Silva $4,717,000, and Georges St-Pierre $4,457,000. (Fox) They each had lifetime earnings about equal to what the average NBA player earns in a single year. Of course, for most people, $5.9 Million sounds like a good amount of money. But in the UFC, the money drops off dramatically as you go down the list. The Number 62 highest earner in UFC history, Thiago Alves and number 63, Chris Leben had lifetime earnings of less than $1,000,000. And, number 438, Lance Benoist had less than $100,000. At the bottom was a bunch of people you have probably never hear of, with earnings of $2,000 each. (Fox)

To achieve his ranking of 438th best paid UFC athlete, and to achieve his less than $100,000 lifetime earnings, Lance Benoist fought 9 fights between 2010 and 2014. If he had worked as a school teacher, cop, soldier, or auto mechanic for the same five-year period he would have earned well over $100,000. But he did earn more than the $80,000 he would have earned if he had spent those five years flipping burgers.

Even in the big show, it’s hard to make a living. But not everyone makes it to the big show.

Bellator

After the UFC, Bellator is one of the more respected MMA promotions in the world. The payouts for Bellator 106 looked like this: Michael Chandler was contracted to receive $95,000 appearance fee, plus a win bonus of $95,000. Daniel Straus could max out at $40,000 ($20,000/$20,000). Muhammed Lawal and Emanuel Newton, competing for an interim light heavyweight title, could earn $20,000 ($10,000/$10,000). The loser of the “Fight Master” reality show finale would get $5,000. The winner of the lowest paid fight on the card, Darren Smith vs. Josh Smith would earn $3,000 ($1,500/$1.500). (Bratcher)

While the top salaries in Bellator are admirable for most MMA fighters, they are considerably less than those in the UFC. And once again, the fighters in the middle rungs will barely earn a living. And those in the lower rungs can’t possibly survive on fight purses.

One FC

When former Bellator champion, Ben Askren, signed for One FC, he was guaranteed a $50,000 appearance fee and a $50,000 win bonus. (Symes) According to his Serdog record, he had 14 fights between 2009 and 2015. And of course, he wasn’t paid One FC level money for all of those fights. This is where the low lifetime earnings for MMA fighters come from. Most fighters only receive top payouts for a very small number of fights, at the peak of their careers. And in this case, top money is $100,000 for a win.

Ben Askren was highly critical of former UFC fighter and MMA legend, Phil Baroni, whose record is 15 wins and 18 losses. Apparently, in an attempt to rejuvenate his own, failing career, Phil has called Ben out. (Marrocco)

“’It’s gross how desperate he is to get a fight,’ Askren said. ‘He probably doesn’t know what else he’s going to do with his life, so he’s trying to talk himself (into) a fight.’” (Marrocco)

Phil Baroni has been fighting since 2000, having fought in many of the top MMA organizations: UFC PRIDE, Strikeforce, Cage Rage, DREAM, EliteXC, and ONE FC. If Ben Askren is right, and Phil Baroni has trouble making a living, how can the average fighter?

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a PhD candidate at Shanghai University of sport, writing his dissertation on comparative forms of Chinese wrestling. He is a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia, the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” Antonio is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.

The Monk from Brooklyn, the book which gave Antonio his name, and all of his other books, the book available at amazon.com. His book, Warrior Odyssey, chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia, including stories about Khmer and Vietnamese martial arts as well as the war in Burma and the Shan State Army, is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Brooklyn-Monk/152520701445654?fref=ts
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

Bibliography

Army, U.S. ‘U.S. Army Employer Salary, Average Salaries | Payscale’. Payscale.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Badenhausen, Kurt. ‘Average MLB Player Salary Nearly Double NFL’s, But Still Trails NBA’s’. Forbes. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Bratcher, Jack. ‘“Strikeforce: Rockhold Vs. Jardine” Fighter Salaries; Lawler Top Earner At $150,000 | Pro MMA Now’. Prommanow.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Campbell, Scott. ‘Ranking The 20 Wealthiest Professional Wrestlers’. Bleacher Report. N.p., 2012. Web. 3 Sept. 201
Cramer, Rob. ‘The World’s 10 Richest Boxers’. TheRichest. N.p., 2014. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Fox, Jeff. ‘UFC Career Fighter Earnings – MMA Manifesto’. MMA Manifesto. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Gaines, Cork. ‘CHART: The Average NBA Player Will Make A Lot More In His Career Than The Other Major Sports’. Business Insider. N.p., 2013. Web. 3 Sept. 2015.
Gaines, Cork. ‘CHART: NBA Tops All Sports Leagues With Highest Average Salary For Players’. Business Insider. N.p., 2014. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Gaines, Cork. ‘The 25 Highest-Paid NBA Players Of All Time’. Business Insider. N.p., 2014. Web. 3 Sept. 2015.
Guerra, Tony. ‘Salaries Of Pro Boxers’. Work – Chron.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Indeed.com,. ‘Mcdonalds Salary | Indeed.Com’. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Iole, Kevin. ‘UFC Pay Is A Hot Topic, But Most Involved Feel It Is More Than Fair’. Yahoo Sports. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Marrocco, Steven. ‘Ben Askren On Six-Figure ONE FC Fights, ‘Bald-Headed Fat Man,’ UFC Future, Baroni, More’. MMAjunkie. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
MMAjunkie,. ‘Bellator 106 Salaries: Champ Chandler Could Earn $190K, Alvarez $160K (Updated)’. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
MMA Sentinel,. ‘5 WTF Facts About UFC Fighter Pay’. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Money.usnews.com,. ‘Auto Mechanic Salary Information | Best Jobs | US News Careers’. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Money.usnews.com,. ‘High School Teacher Salary Information | Best Jobs | US News Careers’. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Money.usnews.com,. ‘Patrol Officer Salary Information | Best Jobs | US News Careers’. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Shmoop,. ‘MMA Fighter: Salary’. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.
Symes, Kyle. ‘Askren Details ONE FC Contract’. Bleacher Report. N.p., 2014. Web. 1 Sept. 2015.

Booklyn Monk: Catch Wrestling with Yunaquan (Part 1)

In Uncategorized on August 10, 2015 at 2:28 am

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At the Singapore catch Wrestling association, Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo meets up with Qin Yunquan a leading female catch wrestler and MMA fighter. Catch wrestling is a submission wrestling sport which combines the takedowns and pins of wrestling with submissions, which catch wrestlers call “hooks” or “torture holds.” Catch was born in the mid to late 19th Century in England, but quickly migrated to the US, where it eventually gave rise to professional wrestling and Ameircan freestyle and folkstyle wrestling. MMA fighter, Josh Barnet is one of the most famous catch wrestlers fighting today, but most of the big names of early MMA can trace their lineage to Karl Gotch, a European/American catch wrestler who taught catch to pro wrestlers in Japan in the 1990’s. Among his most famous students were Ken Shamrock and Kazushi Sakuraba.

Watch on Youtube: Catch Wrestling with Yunaquan (Part 1)

Watch it on Youtube: Catch Wrestling with Yunaquan (Part 2 )

Watch it on Youtube: Catch Wrestling with Yunaquan (Part 3 )

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia. He is the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
Warrior Odyssey, the book chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia is available at amazon.com. The book contains stories about the war in Burma and the Shan State Army. The book is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Email Antonio
Antonio@speakingadventure.com
website
http://www.speakingadventure.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

Catch Wrestling in other Media

In Uncategorized on August 6, 2015 at 7:46 am

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As part of the research for his PhD dissertation on comparative wrestling styles, Brooklyn Monk Antonio Graceffo travels to the Singapore Catch Wrestling Association, to explore the art of catch wrestling. Meet female catch wrestler, Qin Yunquan a leading wrestler and MMA fighter in Singapore. Hear the Monk discuss a chapter of the English version of his dissertation, entitled Wrestling in other media. Catch wrestling has appeared in lots of American TV shows from The Little Rascals, The Munsters, The Flintstones, to Spiderman, and on.

Watch on Youtube: Catch Wrestling in other Media

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia. He is the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
Warrior Odyssey, the book chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia is available at amazon.com. The book contains stories about the war in Burma and the Shan State Army. The book is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Email Antonio
Antonio@speakingadventure.com
website
http://www.speakingadventure.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

Martial Arts Styles Do Exist

In Uncategorized on August 3, 2015 at 10:22 am

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By Antonio Graceffo

Recently, I saw a Facebook video of a grappling competition, between a freestyle wrestler and a Brazilian Jujitsu practitioner. There are a lot of Youtube videos with titles like “Muay Thai vs. Kyokushin” or “Kung Fu vs. MMA” but what I liked about this particular video was that both practitioners were wearing the clothing appropriate to their art, which made them easily identifiable. The wrestler wore his singlet and wrestling shoes. The BJJ fighter wore a grappling shirt and shorts. The next thing that was special about this match up was that both men fought according to their distinctive styles. In this modern era of open grappling tournaments and MMA fights, most champion fighters are so well-rounded that the imprint of their original martial art is often barely visible.

The litmus test, for a fighter looking like his or her style, would be Ronda Rousey, who, in spite of being incredibly well-rounded, and in spite of having won her UFC 190 fight completely with striking, usually looks like a judoka. Watching her fights, it is generally clearly obvious that she comes from a world-class judo background. Lyoto Machida definitely owes much of his success to the fact that he fights like a karate man and both grapplers and strikers find it difficult to break inside of his unusual footwork. Another example would be Cung Le, whose san da background is evident in his MMA fights. But, when GSP defeated world-class wrestler Matt Hughes, did he really look like a kyokushin fighter? Or is there anything about Roy “Big Country” Nelson to suggest that his first martial art was kung fu?
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In this video matchup between the wrestler and the BJJ practitioner, the BJJ guy kept trying to pull guard, to take the fight to the ground, where he would have the advantage. The wrestler was clearly looking for, and got, the takedown, which is his strength. Once he engaged, the wrestler executed a suplex, followed by a high-crotch takedown. He slammed the BJJ guy so hard that the referee stopped the match.
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It was the comments posted on this video which caused me to write this article. “its not the name of the style… Its the practitioner”, “Jujutsu is wrestling, Judo – is wrestling”, “There are not ‘greco technique ‘ of ‘BJJ technique , ‘judo technique’ or ‘free style technique’ There are only ‘RIGHT TECHNIQUE’ and ‘WRONG’”.

Recently, I have heard a lot of people claiming that there are no martial arts styles, only “good technique” and “bad technique.” But this is simply not the case. Some techniques are similar across multiple styles, for example, a shoulder throw can be used in judo, shuai jiao, submission wrestling, or even san da. But other techniques are not. And if a particular style lacks a particular technique, the practitioners normally don’t drill the defense to that technique. Boxers, for example don’t practice sprawl, because there is no single or double leg takedown in boxing. Wrestlers don’t practice passing the guard, because that situation doesn’t exist in wrestling.
Styles definitely exist. And for that reason, when people wish to excel in mixed style events, like open grappling tournaments, or MMA fights, the best fighters tend to be complete fighters who train in multiple styles.

As anecdotal evidence proving the existence of styles, let me present the findings of my summer research. This summer, I travelled for three solid months training and filming Martial Arts Odyssey. My journey took me to Shanghai, Phnom Penh, Bangkok, New York, Singapore, and Johor Bahru. Along the way, I trained and/or filmed the following martial arts: san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, Kepap, catch wrestling, sambo, submission wrestling, judo, boxing, and Brazilian jujitsu.

In san da training, we spent an hour catching kicks. Kick catching is not taught in Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, catch wrestling, submission wrestling, judo, boxing, or Brazilian jujitsu.

In Greco-Roman wrestling we were practicing dropping to one knee and executing a fireman’s carry (without touching the opponent’s leg). This method is not taught in san da, shuai jiao wrestling or boxing.

In freestyle wrestling we were working on cat’s cradle pin. This technique is not taught in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, or boxing.

In freestyle, we also worked on ankle-pick which is not done in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, Kepap, judo, or boxing.

In shuai jiao wrestling we practiced jacket grabbing drills. These techniques are not taught in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, Kepap, catch wrestling, submission wrestling, boxing, or Brazilian jujitsu.

In kepap class the students were learning how to execute a knife attack. Offensive knife fighting is never taught in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, catch wrestling, boxing, sambo, submission wrestling, judo, or Brazilian jujitsu.

In Catch wrestling we were learning knee and ankle submissions. These techniques are forbidden, and thus not taught, in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, boxing, or judo.

In sambo we were learning knee compression submissions. These are not taught in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, Kepap, judo, or boxing.

In submission wrestling we worked on turtle defense and reversing an opponent who was turttled up, so you could get the pin. Turtle position doesn’t exist in san da, shuai jiao wrestling, Kepap, or boxing.

In judo we learned how to use the opponent’s gi top to choke him. This is not practiced in: san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, Kepap, catch wrestling, submission wrestling, or boxing.

In boxing training, my coach, Paddy Carson, was helping me improve the rhythm of my three-punch combinations. Punching isn’t taught in Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, catch wrestling, submission wrestling, judo, or Brazilian jujitsu.

At Brazilian jujitsu class we were learning spider guard. These skills are not taught in san da, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, shuai jiao wrestling, catch wrestling, or boxing.

Styles clearly exist. For this reason, to be a complete fighter, one must study multiple STYLES.

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a PhD candidate at Shanghai University of sport, writing his dissertation on comparative forms of Chinese wrestling. He is martial arts and adventure author living in Asia, the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
The Monk from Brooklyn, the book which gave Antonio his name, and all of his other books, the book available at amazon.com. His book, Warrior Odyssey, chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia, including stories about Khmer and Vietnamese martial arts as well as the war in Burma and the Shan State Army, is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Brooklyn-Monk/152520701445654?fref=ts
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com
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Paddy’s Fight Club 2015 (Parts 1 and 3)

In Uncategorized on August 3, 2015 at 1:06 am

Paddy Carson has always believed that boxing fundamentals were the cornerstone of fighting. Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo, began training at the original Paddy’s Fight Club, under the Japanese bridge, in Phnom Penh, back in 2004. The club has changed and developed over the years. Now, Paddy even has MMA fighters training in his club which was already famous for Khmer boxing and western boxing. In this video catch a special appearance by grappling coach Alan Mccune. But whether the guys are fighting in boxing, kick boxing, or MMA, Paddy believes the most important element of a fight is having good boxing fundamentals.

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Paddy Carson has been Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo’s boxing coach for more than a decade. While overcoming cancer, Paddy was forced to have the bones in his leg removed and replaced with titanium. After completing physiotherapy, in the true spirit of Bushido, Paddy returned to work as a boxing coach, getting in the ring every day and taking his pros on the pads. After a pad session at Paddy’s Fight Club, Phnom Penh, Paddy, a second dan kyokushin black belt, challenged the Monk to a kyokushin-style, bare knuckle, body- blow sparring session. In the Monk’s own words, “Paddy’s sparring was heroic. Mine was comical.” Only one phrase comes to mind when you see a man of Paddy’s age, a cancer survivor, missing one leg, beat the crap out of a Brooklyn Monk, twenty years his junior, who outweighs him by fifteen or twenty kilograms, FULL RESPECT!
Watch on Youtube: Paddy’s Fight Club 2015 (Part 1)

Watch it on Youtube: Paddy’s Fight Club 2015 (Part 2 )

Watch it on Youtube: Paddy’s Fight Club 2015 (Part 3)

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia. He is the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
Warrior Odyssey, the book chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia is available at amazon.com. The book contains stories about the war in Burma and the Shan State Army. The book is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Email Antonio
Antonio@speakingadventure.com
website
http://www.speakingadventure.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

Brooklyn Monk: Full Respect

In Uncategorized on July 11, 2015 at 4:18 pm

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Paddy Carson has been Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo’s boxing coach for more than a decade. While overcoming cancer, Paddy was forced to have the bones in his leg removed and replaced with titanium. After completing physiotherapy, in the true spirit of Bushido, Paddy returned to work as a boxing coach, getting in the ring every day and taking his pros on the pads. After a pad session at Paddy’s Fight Club, Phnom Penh, Paddy, a second dan kyokushin black belt, challenged the Monk to a kyokushin-style, bare knuckle, body- blow sparring session. In the Monk’s own words, “Paddy’s sparring was heroic. Mine was comical.” Only one phrase comes to mind when you see a man of Paddy’s age, a cancer survivor, missing one leg, beat the crap out of a Brooklyn Monk, twenty years his junior, who outweighs him by fifteen or twenty kilograms, FULL RESPECT!
Watch: Brooklyn Monk: Full Respect

Brooklyn Monk, Antonio Graceffo is a martial arts and adventure author living in Asia. He is the author of the books, “Warrior Odyssey’ and “The Monk from Brooklyn.” He is also the host of the web TV show, “Martial Arts Odyssey,” which traces his ongoing journey through Asia, learning martial arts in various countries.
Warrior Odyssey, the book chronicling Antonio Graceffo’s first six years in Asia is available at amazon.com. The book contains stories about the war in Burma and the Shan State Army. The book is available at http://www.blackbeltmag.com/warrior_odyssey
See Antonio’s Destinations video series and find out about his column on http://www.blackbeltmag.com
Email Antonio
Antonio@speakingadventure.com
website
http://www.speakingadventure.com
Twitter
http://twitter.com/Brooklynmonk
facebook
Brooklyn Monk fan page
Brooklyn Monk on YOUTUBE
http://www.youtube.com/user/brooklynmonk1
Brooklyn Monk in Asia Podcast (anti-travel humor)
http://brooklynmonk.podomatic.com

Brooklyn Monk in 3D
Order the download at http://3dguy.tv/brooklyn-monk-in-3d/