With former Vancouver resident Denis Kang (32-11-1 2NC) set to compete on the main card at this Saturday's UFC 105, now seems like a good time to debut "B.C. Biography," a new series of posts that will highlight British Columbia's brightest MMA stars. Not every fighter profiled needs to have been born here, but each must have a significant connection to the province.
Denis Kang, son of a Korean father and a French mother, moved around the world repeatedly as a child before finally settling with his family in North Vancouver at age eleven in 1988. Young Denis spent the rest of his childhood in B.C. and it was here that he first began training in mixed martial arts.
Kang's first two fights, both wins, took place in Vancouver in 1998. Kang has fought a total of six times in B.C., all in Vancouver and Kelowna, with a near perfect record of 5-0 with 1 N/C. He used that early-career success as a springboard to dominant runs through Japan's Pride Fighting Championship and Korea's Spirit MC. He went a combined 16-1 with 1 N/C in those MMA promotions. In all, Kang has fought professionally in six countries and will attempt to score a win against Michael "The Count" Bisping (17-2) in lucky number seven when he fights in the U.K.'s Manchester, England this weekend. When Kang sticks to his game plan and remains focused during a fight, he's a very tough obstacle for any fighter in the UFC's middleweight division.
These days, Denis Kang trains occasionally with Georges St-Pierre at Tri-Star gym in Montreal and, most often, with American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida. One place he doesn't train is British Columbia owing primarily to the fact that, since MMA was deregulated in Vancouver in 2007, it's become next to impossible to find high-quality sparring partners or technical support for MMA in B.C. According to Kang, there's also a negative social stigma attached to MMA in British Columbia that doesn't exist elsewhere in Canada:
"In Vancouver, you have this attitude where people assume everyone in MMA is in a gang. I think it has the negative image that has been brought to the sport by the media, that it's all gang association. In Montreal, it's about the training."
Click Below For:
Interview on Denis Kang's Official Site
Vancouver Sun Profile of Denis Kang