Many know Luke Rockhold for taking the belt from Chris Weidman. However, Luke has been a champion his entire life. Although he resides in the middleweight division of the UFC, he spends his time training against heavyweight monsters. Rockhold trained for years out of American Kickboxing Academy (AKA), which is home to Light Heavyweight Champion, Daniel Cormier. It is also home to Cain Velsquez, Mike Swick, Gray Maynard, Khabib Nurmagomedov, and more. This gym is a murderers row of MMA talent, and it is where Rockhold punched his time card day in and day out.
If the roster of Rockhold’s training partners was not enough, he recently made a change. Rockhold now trains under the legend, Henri Hooft. While Rockhold won titles under Strikeforce and the UFC while training with AKA, the training was coming at a price. The AKA camp is a camp known for ferocious training sessions, and many fighters have suffered injuries preparing for big fights. It may be that this is the reason Luke made the change to Hooft. However, here at The Weigh-In, we think he made the change in order to hone in on his striking. Rockhold is not content with his championship arsenal of weapons. As a true champion, he keeps looking to evolve his game.
Hooft is known as one of the best striking coaches in the nation. It is here that Rockhold will improve on his boxing ability to further terrorize his opponents. Imagine a Rockhold who dominated Weidman with ground and pound being much improved on his feet. I will have nightmares and possibly night emissions over this thought.
Aside from Rockhold’s impressive training regimen, his record is impressive as well. Many know that Rockhold is a two-league champion. Rockhold has held titles in Strikeforce and the UFC. As the sport evolves, Rockhold always seems to find a place at the top of his division. His championship run has not been without its share of adversity.
After winning his UFC title, Rockhold suffered a humiliating upset loss to Michael Bisping. Rockhold has come around to state he lost the fight due to lack of focus. By lack of focus we can only assume he got distracted by some Hollywood strange. After winning the UFC Middleweight Title, rumors of Rockhold eating canned tuna off the bottom shelf began to fly out of the Rockhold camp. Rockhold was buried in so much strange that the cast of Deadliest Catch used him to bait crab. Please remember we do not fact check. It is worthy of note that Bisping replaced Weidman last minute, and Rockhold still decided to defend his title even though he was injured. We all know how it ended up. Bisping and Rockhold are not necessarily sending one another Christmas cards.
After suffering the loss, Rockhold was set to square off against Robert Whittaker for a chance to regain his middleweight title. Whittaker had to pull out of this fight due to a nasty staff infection. Did Rockhold decide to wait for Whittaker’s return? Did Rockhold decide to sit on the sidelines until he could have his title shot? Rockhold allowed Yoel Romero to step in for Whittaker last minute. Romero came in over weight, which meant he could not win a title. Despite all of this, Rockhold showed how game he was. Rockhold stepped into the Octagon against an unexpected and dangerous opponent. As always, Rockhold held his own. However, Romero ultimately knocked out Rockhold in the third round.
Many believe Rockhold should drop down in the middleweight rankings. This writer is forced to ask why? Why would a champion like Rockhold be punished for taking on all comers? Why would a fucking champion who chose to give the fans what they want be out of title contention? Why would a man whose fingers smell like cologne produced by Starkist be forced to watch as others compete for his belt? The short answer is, he should not be out of title contention. I understand that he may have to fight someone else before getting another title shot, but to be punished for being a fucking a gamer would be an injustice.
The last time there was an injustice of this level in the world was back in 1995. For those of you who pride yourselves as history buffs, I am sure you know what I am referring to. For those of your who are my true readers, I will spell it out for you. I am of course referring to Marcia Clark’s hairstyle, wink wink. This is neither here nor there. The point is that when I think of what defines a champion, Rockhold has it.
A champion gives all comers a shot at their title. A champion fears no one. A champion takes one of the bridesmaids back to his hotel only to not be there by the time she awakes the following morning. A champion pukes after six shots and four beers, but still closes the bar down after a rally. A champion appears on the Maury Povich Show and is found to not be the father.
Champions conduct themselves as Luke Rockhold has. A champion rises every morning knowing that everyone in the world wants a piece of them. By now, I am sure you all understand where this is going. Rockhold is a fucking stud, and he will be back on top.
People’s Red Head Out!
Special Thanks To:
Maury Povich (holding baby daddy’s accountable)
Denzel for his portrayal of Roman J. Israel, Esquire
Tacos (they are just amazing)
Josh Duhamel for one of the best hair games in the business
Abortion (it gets a bad rap)
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