Kevin Engel is slated to return to the Shamrock FC octagon when he takes on Shah Zolfagnari at Shamrock FC 314
Kevin Engel (5-1 MMA) is a long-time veteran of the Shamrock FC cage. He racked up an impressive 5-fight winning streak within the organization. Engel’s one and only mixed martial arts loss came at the hands of Chel Erwin-Davis (5-2 MMA) back at Bellator 157 in June of 2016.
While Engel is not necessarily rushing back at the opportunity to compete in a mixed martial arts bout, he is excited to return to something he is more comfortable with: kickboxing.
“I started kickboxing, transitioned into boxing and I did a couple amateur MMA Fights” Engel began telling FightBook MMA. “When I turned professional [in MMA] I also turned professional in kickboxing, that was in 2005, I think. I had several professional kickboxing fights. I fought in the Chuck Norris World Combat League, which was kind of a cool deal, we fought in an open circle.”
Engel has spent the majority of his professional mixed martial arts career within Shamrock FC. Not only has Engel been a part of the organization since the beginning, but he is also a commentator for some of their events. He was able to be a pioneer for the company when he and Shamrock FC founder, Jessey Finney, started training together after Engel joined Finney’s gym.
“I started my amateur career with Shamrock Promotions. When he [Jesse Finney] started promoting, maybe 25 years ago I think, there were amateur fights at first. and then he’s grown to professional fights. I’ve been with them not since day one but pretty close.”
When we analyze the success Engel has had, it is evident that his well-decorated kickboxing career speaks volumes. Engel has not fought in a professional mixed martial arts match for over two years, yet has stayed active within the kickboxing scene. The reason for choosing one over the other came down to one thing: motivation.
“It was really getting the motivation back. There is so much that goes into training for MMA. When I compare the sports I fight in, I don’t want to say one is easier than the other, but it’s easier for me personally to train for a boxing fight. I can run, I can hit the bag and I can spar. An MMA fight, I have to do all those things plus wrestling, plus Brazilian jiu-jitsu. It just takes up a lot more time, and I’m not a 22-year-old kid anymore.”
As Engel is preparing for his main event appearance at Shamrock FC 314 on January 12th, he seems to have all the confidence in the world. Admittingly, an MMA fight would be too taxing on his body and time at this stage of his career. However, in a kickboxing match, everything is different.
A three round kickboxing fight, I think I can fight with anyone in the world
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Sitting Ringside Ep. #47