Brad - Who do you train with?
Tom Kenney - I train with John DelaO. I have been training there since 1999. My old wrestling coach heard that my friends and I were getting into fights on the weekends and told me he had something for me. It was called extreme shoot (thrown by Chris Dole) and was my first professional fight. I met some promoters at that show and fought the same guy I fought at extreme shoot in another event and defeated him again.
Another six months went by and the promoter called me again so I fought in extreme shoot 98. So I lost in that fight and figured I should probably get some training in. So I decided to train with John. Some buddies we used to train with a long time ago referred me to him.
Brad - What specifically do you train in?
Tom Kenney - I primarily train Jiu Jitsu but I also train wrestling and a few times a week with a Muay Thai Coach and a Boxing Coach Armando Shore
Brad - What weight do you fight at?
Tom Kenney - I fight in the 180lb Weight class but I usually come in at 175. I feel better at that weight, being heavier makes me feel a bit sluggish.
Brad - What are your feelings about the ground knees strike rule that King of the Cage recently changed to include striking to the head?
Tom Kenney - I feel that it will benefit me in my future fights…
Brad - Who is your fight with this Saturday at Sobaba Casino?
Tom Kenney - Its in the King of the Cage event against Jorge Perreria … it’s a 2 five minute round fight… He fought at the King of the Cage in Miami against Todd Carney…. It was supposed to be a warm up fight for me but he got Knocked Out… He is really good from what I have heard… he Fought Matt Hughes in 2000 and Pele 1998 but lost both fights due to a cut over his left eye… He also defeated Ebenezer Fontes Braga way back in 95…
Brad - How many Days a week do you train?
Tom Kenney - I train 6 days a week. I got to have Sundays off. Training is like my fulltime job. I work All Day Monday through Saturday.
Brad - How Much Cardio are you doing?
Tom Kenney - I do a lot of Cardio. I have a Gym Pass at Los Caballeros down the street and they have an Olympic size swimming pool. I swim at least 40 laps there 2 times a week. I run every other day a mile as fast as I can to keep my recovery time good. Right now before my 12 o clock class of Jiu-jitsu I’m there an hour early just doing pure cardio.
Brad - Who are your sparring/training partners?
Tom Kenney - My main Sparring partner is Ron Turner. He has been training with me pretty much since I have started. He is one of the guys who helped get me into MMA. I also train with a huge OX of a guy named Healy. Also train with Dan Turner, Jerry Noche, and a lot of the other good guys at my school. There is no attitude there. Everyone trains with each other. My attitude is; I’m not going to get any better if the white belts don’t get any better.
Brad - I noticed you have been fighting only once a year. Will you be fighting more frequently in the future?
Tom Kenney - I try to fight at least twice a year. I was supposed to fight at the King of the Cage in Miami but I broke my hand in my last fight with Paul Cid. So I had to give it some time to heal. Now my hand is at 100% but hopefully I’ll break it again on my next opponent.
Brad - You fight with wrestling shoes on. Would you feel more comfortable fighting without wrestling shoes on?
Tom Kenney - In my last fight I didn’t have shoes on and I felt fine. Most of my fights I fight with my shoes on because I mess up my foot when I train kickboxing.
Brad - What other sports do you like?
Tom Kenney - This is pretty much the only sport I like. I also like watching Kickboxing and Muay Thai. When I’m watching Muay Thai and they go shin to shin its brutal. It makes me cringe. What I like about fighting is that it’s an individual sport not like football where everyone is pointing their finger at someone else when they lose. I love this sport it’s a great sport I just hope it gets more mainstream so that paydays are better.
Brad - Where else would you like to fight?
Tom Kenney - What ever my managers think is best. I would love to go fight in Hawaii.
Brad - Hawaii, do you mean in SuperBrawl?
Tom Kenney - Yeah, I would love to fight in the WEC too. I went to their last event it was great. It’s my dream to go fight in the UFC or Pride. If I get a ticket to Japan I would probably retire after.
Brad - So whom would you most like to fight?
Tom Kenney - I don’t go out and look to fight certain people. Everyone is so good now it doesn’t really matter.
Brad - When you fight you wear black and red socks…
Tom Kenney - Those are my lucky socks! They were my grandfather’s socks and he passed away… Anytime I go fight, I’m really superstitious about certain things, I have something from my family in my bag or I wear those socks or my lucky hat.
Brad - Have you ever been Knocked Out before?
Tom Kenney - I was up in Prince George I fought a guy named Decklin Carroll. I locked his arm like six or seven times it sounded like a tree falling Pop Pop Pop Pop Pop… He still wouldn’t tap… his arm went like a full 360. Then later in the fight I went in to shoot on him and he kneed me in the head and he kept pounding on me with like 30 seconds left in the fight they stopped it. I have asked for a rematch but he won’t rematch me. Every time they interview me after a fight in KOTC I call him out. The guy is a little bitch. Put that in the interview too Decklin Carroll is a BITCH! I called him out 3 different times and he won’t accept the challenge.
Brad - What are you plans after you’re done with your fighting career?
Tom Kenney - Open up my own school. I have probably another 2 years before I have that.
Brad - What belt are you at in BJJ right now?
Tom Kenney - Brown Belt. John is a great teacher. He has a great school. We are like family to each other. Everyone checks his or her egos at the door. If I know I got u tapped out I’m not going to sit there and crank it out till it pops I’m going to move on to something else. I don’t get anything out of hurting another student.
Brad - Do you guys train Gi or no Gi?
Tom Kenney - Both. It’s Jiu Jitsu you have to train with the Gi. I like the Gi but I like no Gi a little better since I can slip out of things a little bit easier.
Brad - Finally who are your sponsors?
Tom Kenney - Outcast Fight Gear, Club MetRx. Outcast really hooks me up. If I ever need anything they help me out.
Brad - Thanks for the interview Tom.
Tom Kenney -No Problem.