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Flight to Fight: Thai Boxing in Thailand

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Bloody Elbow’s own Eddie Mercado is heading out to Tiger Muay Thai in Phuket, Thailand to train and ultimately compete in the art of Muay Thai. Follow his journey from start to finish to see the ups, the downs, the sights, and the fights. Watch the trailer here.

Bloody Elbow’s Eddie Mercado here, to tell you about my upcoming video series ‘Flight to Fight: Thai Boxing in Thailand.’ Follow along as I fly halfway around the world, to Phuket, Thailand, where I’ll train and compete in the national sport and martial art of Muay Thai. I’ll be staying and training at world renowned camp Tiger Muay Thai, beginning December 1st and will look to take my first pro fight just before New Year’s Eve.

As longtime readers will know, you can typically catch me in front of the computer screen, doing event coverage, podcasting with my SB Nation brethren, and interviewing UFC fighters. Well, the time has come for me to step out from behind the keyboard, throw on the gloves, and step inside the ring. I’ll be vlogging the experience all the way through, for your viewing pleasure, so that you can come along for the ride.

This video series is presented by OddsShark, and also made possible by Spartyka Nation, Tiger Muay Thai, Diego Bispo Academy and Harvey Grasse Muay Thai, as well as MASF Supplements, as well as others.

The series will begin at my home in the United States, as I get in in my last few training sessions at Diego Bispo Academy and Harvey Grasse Muay Thai before heading out. The journey will continue in Phuket as I get situated at Tiger Muay Thai and get a better understanding of what my schedule will be like. I usually don’t sleep on airplanes and have no idea just how severe the jet lag will be, so my first few days should be interesting.

Viewers will be able to come along, as I focus in on the art form of Muay Thai, and grind out session after session, working towards competing in an actual Thai fight. Along the way, I’m expecting to take in the sights and sounds of Phuket culture, from the food to the beaches and almost everything in between.

Watch me warm up before my fight and shift my mindset into battle mode before I make the walk to the ring, and then be prepared for my candid post-fight thoughts on what the ____ I just went through. Wrapping up the trip, I’ll be swinging through Tokyo for New Years Eve. And who knows, I may even end up at a major MMA event out there to peep some soccer kicks.

A little bit of information about me: I’m 33 years of age (which is heading toward ‘old’ for combat sports). I’m not particularly fast, excessively strong, or really athletic, for that matter. Those are just excuses, though. DNA for a weak mindset, and ain’t nobody got time for that! I have been getting myself prepared to the best of my ability and I have no doubt that I will be the most beastly version of myself, and am willing leave it all in the ring. I want this. See my list of ‘why’s’ below.

Enough about me, let’s talk about the combat sport that is widely known as the art of eight limbs. Muay Thai kickboxing encompasses striking techniques such as punches, kicks, elbows and knees. The art form also utilizing various clinch and sweep techniques for when the fight gets in close. There are shades of Muay Thai all over the UFC and MMA alike, if you just look at the clinch of Anderson Silva, the leg kicks of Pedro Rizzo, or how about the standing elbows of Matt Brown.

Where I’m staying, Tiger Muay Thai, is one of the most prestigious fight camps in all of Thailand and sits on the beautiful island of Phuket. The gym is not only known for its sharp striking technique, but also has quite the stable of MMA and Jiu Jitsu competitors as well. MMA fans may have heard of a few of their sponsored fighters like Mark Hunt, Tai Tuivasa, Valentina Shevchenko, and Alexander Volkanovski among others.

Check out the Flight to Fight: Thai Boxing in Thailand teaser below:

The plan:

  • Travel to Phuket, Thailand
  • Train at Tiger Muay Thai
  • See the sights & hear the sounds of Phuket
  • Experience the Thai culture
  • Compete in Muay Thai fight
  • Spend New Years in Tokyo
  • Travel back to the U.S.A.

Personal feats:

  • Catch a tiger by its toe
  • Catch a fish
  • Gamble on a fight
  • Get bumped up to first class
  • Fly in a friend
  • Run Big Buddha
  • Compete in Muay Thai fight in Thailand
  • Watch Floyd Mayweather compete


  • I spend so much time covering combat sports that I feel like putting myself through a camp, and competing in an actual fight, will give me a better understanding of what living that life is like. Training is one thing, competing is another. What better place to Thai Box than Thailand?
  • I want to show people that they don’t have to want to be a UFC champion to compete in combat sports. You can just be a regular dude, like me, and go to a place like Tiger Muay Thai, learn some skills, and live out your dream.
  • I want to prove that excuses are lame and if you want something bad enough, then you owe it to yourself to go after it with gusto.
  • I don’t want to be old and gray, sitting around wondering what if. I’d rather be old and gray watching the Flight to Fight video series with no regrets, reminiscing on my time in Thailand.
  • Bruh, it’s Phuket, Thailand.

Why not? (Excuses):

  • None.

How to watch:

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