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About our gym – Founded by Josh “The Irishman” Rutgers, Undefeated Professional Boxer 5-0 5 knock outs. Josh also fought numerous No Holds Barred and Mixed Martial Arts fights professionally from 1999 – 2009. Josh competed as an amateur from 1996-1999. Josh fought Toughman on the FX channel on television and was also the 2004 Florida Bare Knuckle Full Contact Karate Champion. Josh has trained countless people and put hundreds into the ring both amateur and professional. Currently Josh referees amateur and professional MMA, having worked for the biggest promotions in the world, including The UFC, Bellator, World Series of Fighting and many others.
Michael “Knight Rider” Knight has been with Deadgame Fight School since 2005 and was originally trained by Josh. Knight has competed as an amateur in Boxing and Muay Thai in multiple weight classes. There is not a man alive who has ever defeated Knight in competition. Knight has cornered countless bouts both Professionally and Amateur in boxing, kickboxing and MMA. Knight is currently licensed in multiple states throughout America as a Professional Trainer due to the fact that he regularly travels with the fighters to the bouts. Knight is a full time coach.
Amar “Big Scary” Cox has been with Deadgame Fight School since 2008 and was originally trained by Josh and Knight. Cox has competed in multiple no gi submission grappling matches and never tasted defeat. Cox has an amateur MMA record of 6 wins (5 by KO or TKO) and 1 loss (decision). Cox previously held an Amateur MMA Promotional Championship Title. Cox also holds two(2) college degrees and is currently pursuing a 3rd.
When Deadgame Fight School first opened, all the other fight gyms that were in Jacksonville at that time have since went out of business and shut down. All the other boxing, MMA and BJJ schools/gyms that are currently here in Jacksonville today were not here when Deadgame Fight School opened. There are multiple reasons behind this. Right about now is where you (the reader) expect me to try and use a sales pitch and claim to be “The Best” to draw you into our gym. Well, there are plenty others who will make that claim, but not me. For one, to claim to be “The Best” is ridiculous – that is purely a matter of opinion. Some would say a win/loss ratio would deem who was “The Best”. I disagree. Wins/Losses in the fight game can be quite misleading. For instance, back in the day, we showed up and fought whoever, wherever. We were just glad for the opportunity to be able to fight. That’s not the case anymore. Now a days fighters rarely REALLY want to fight, they just want to win so they can brag and post pics on social media and tell everyone they are “a fighter”. In doing so, gyms and coaches often hand pick opponents and rarely take a chance. So to win against lower opposition, doesn’t necessarily prove much. Don’t get me wrong, there’s an art to building a guy up the right way, but that’s done primarily as a professional. Not as an amateur. Perfect example – Amar “Big Scary” Cox first MMA fight was against a guy who was 6-0 named Tommy Rowland. I personally trained Cox and I had seen Rowland fight. I was confident and Cox won in approx. one(1) minute. By the same accord, a journeyman who has a losing record and has lost his last six fights may be considered by many a bum. If you scratch the surface and see WHO that journeyman fought, you often realize he was outmatched and took fights against people who others did not want to fight. As a professional it is important to build a record, but also important to learn to fight along the way. The late great Johnny Bos knew a thing or two about that and if you don’t know who he is – Google. More importantly, he was a dear friend and a man who taught me more than most will ever know. Moral of the story – don’t believe everything people tell you in the fight game. There are a lot of con artists and wannabes and hustlers in this game. People who make claims of things they have not done. Things which can’t be verified. Go with your gut. If it seems shady, it probably is. We have never ran Deadgame Fight School like a business and this is in no way our livelihood. We have always been brutally honest with people and kept our focus on training fighters, rather than signing new people up. Does that mean that you have to fight or want to be a fighter to come train with us? Of course not.
We have had the pleasure of molding athletes from day one into champions. There is no greater sense of accomplishment for a coach than taking a person with zero experience and listening to their dreams and then putting the plan into motion and experiencing the success together. As coaches, we take zero credit for the successes of fighters in our gym. All we did was guide them on the path. It is the individual who actually does it. We can tell you, show you, push you etc, but ultimately it is on YOU. Now a days in Jacksonville there are quite a few franchise type gyms who have a cookie cutter approach to training. I’m sorry, but in the fight game that just doesn’t work and I am not talking about training fighters only. Even just for people who want to use our training methods and techniques to reach a fitness goal, no two people are the same and this is not an aerobics class. With that being said, let’s not lose focus on the fact that the fundamentals never change and can’t be compromised. Bottom line – hard work pays off.
If you are looking for a gym to train at with a smoothie bar, THIS IS NOT IT. If you dream about being a fighter, but have no experience, we would LOVE to work with you. However, that doesn’t mean call us on the phone or show up at the gym and TALK about how you wanna do this and that and brag to us about how strong you are or about the barfight you had a couple weeks ago. That’s a quick way to get ignored. Call or show up, introduce yourself, state your goals, tell us if you have any injuries and from there, shut up and WORK. There’s not a simpler way to put it. All you have to do is give us what you’ve got. If you do that, we’ll never give up on you. Weather your goal is to learn to fight, lose weight, get strong or just have fun, we’re here.
It’s real simple – we don’t do any sort of contracts. You only pay for when you train. We also don’t do any sort of “gym tour” or “free classes”. We are not salesmen. As long as we’ve been doing this and the successes we have been blessed with speak for themselves. We are NOT standing on a street corner waving a flag or holding a sign saying, “Come try this” like a lot of other gyms around Jacksonville today. There is a reason for that. We know from experience that this is NOT for everyone. This is also not something that we talk someone into trying. Those who are serious will find their way to us. Sadly, most beginners who think and say they “Want to be a fighter” don’t truly want that once the going gets tough. Watching it on TV is one thing, showing up to a gym on a regular basis and pushing yourself harder than you ever have in your life and stepping outside your comfort level is not something all people are capable of. People learn a lot about themselves doing this.
Here’s how it works – call 904 982 0099 and let me know when you want to come up so we can arrange time to work specifically with you one on one. We don’t run a “class” structure. We run an open gym format with both pros and amateurs in the gym weekly, but we also have coaches on the floor to work with you individually. The bulk of our training takes place Monday – Friday. Weekends are not guaranteed due to our busy travel schedule taking guys to fights. You pay $40 the first day you come up. That will cover you for two weeks. That will give you an opportunity to check out the gym, the programs we offer and the level of coaching and see if it’s for you. If you decide to stay, we’ll put you on an affordable monthly rate. No down payment, no contracts, not gimmicks or B.S.
Thanks for reading,