October 11, 2008

Cage fighter doesn't like violence

Crowd loves pacifist cage fighter

Cage fight fans pack casinoAround 1,500 people packed the Spotlight 29 Casino Thursday for Apocalypse II: The Second Coming, the second caged, mixed martial arts fight night held here since August.

Nine professional fights and three amateurs bouts kept the crowd entertained for nearly three hours. Four of the matches featured fighters from the desert, including the huge crowd favorite, Mike “Tenchu” Mirelez.

A member of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, Mirelez is a lifelong resident of the Coachella Valley and trains at Tru MMA in Palm Desert.

“I needed insurance for my 5-year-old boy, so I started fighting three years ago,” the 34-year-old Mirelez said.

Mirelez, whose professional record improved to 5-1 on Thursday, is something of an anomaly in the mixed martial arts world. He claims he doesn't like to brawl, and because of his nonviolent nature, refuses to throw elbows—one of the most devastating shots—at his opponents.

“I sure as hell don't do this for the recognition or the glory—I don't like fighting,” Mirelez said. “Every single time I go out there, it's nerve-wracking, because I'm not a violent person and I've got to figure out how I'm going to go in there and win.”
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Winning Through Nonviolence.

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