TBA Muay Thai Classic


First off, I apologize about my recent silence. Training and training a fight team is in its self a full time job, and I feel lucky to have the support of the whole team working together to help each other. We are definitely a collective of hardworking fighters, helping one another grow and prepare.

As an update, a few of our newer students had to withdraw do to school, finances, families and jobs. Coach Woody also had to pull out due to a black out month at work. That’s the way it goes sometimes, but his time will come again!

Anyhow, as Woody’s job hasn’t permitted him to compete, he’s step up to bat taking a major lead in investing time to help the team prepare for the Muay Thai Classic. I can’t say how proud I am of everyone, working hard and being self motivated and working as a unit. We’re only two days from weigh-ins, and ready to rock and roll.


Let’s make a statement!

Champions Loading…


DJ Miller… The terminator


(TFL) In April we video interviewed DJ Miller after his KO loss to Adam Edgerton. Shortly after, DJ was booked for a rematch scheduled for June 1st. And DJ, like the terminator, returning to the ring for more, is one guy that just won’t stay down.

DJ, tell us how it went?

(DJ Miller) The event was even better then the last, but I knew there was a different outcome in the air. Instead this time, we were the red corner and we weren’t the last fight. I didn’t return the KO like how I wanted to, but I did give 5 rounds of my passion and fury.


(TFL) Tell us about your training?

(DJ Miller) I mixed up my training with some other gym affiliates that are a part of our lineage of Sidthilaw Muay Thai, (Bonafyde MMA). There I learned how to utilize my hands and defend against hands a lot more by head striking coach Chris Beasley.

(TFL) How much time have you been putting in at the gym?
(DJ Miller)Between fitness training, running, sprinting and class its self I was putting at least four hours a day in the gym to prepare for this rematch

(TFL) That’s a lot of time spent away from your friends and family…

(DJ Miller) It is, but my friends and family understands and fully supports my cause. Without them this wouldn’t be possible.


(TFL) Would you care to give us a recap on the fight?

(DJ Miller) The fight was intense, but I knew something was up when AJ didn’t kick off the fight right after the glove touch, (aggressive) like he always does. It confused me initially, but I realized he was making a HUGE mistake because it gave me a chance to find my rhythm, as my traditional Thai style calls for.

Since I studied the first footage and was aware of what was coming from him, I decided to stay in the pocket of his combos, absorb his strikes and fire back twice is hard. Bring him into the clinch as often as possible and utilize my push kicks. When AJ got the opportunity knock me stupid with his punches, which he did (Laughs),  I kept listening to Haycraft in his corner, saying “hands. Hands. hands! There’s the uppercut again! Set it up!” and behind my shielding gloves I was smiling and thinking to myself, “I don’t think so! Not this time!” and I defended intelligently.


(TFL) being an honest and sportsmen guy that Adam is, I quote Adam, “tonight I got schooled” how does that feel?
(DJ Miller) It’s very honoring, for someone of Adam’s level to say I schooled him. I think the term ‘schooled’ may have been a bit overkill, because in no way was that an easy fight. I popped three ibuprofen pills right after I got backstage (Laughs). Adam is a great fighter and performed amazingly, but that night he faced me while I was fighting with the pride of Thailand, and the spirit of Hanuman.


(TFL) How does it feel having that gold strap?

(DJ Miller) I never really had a fixation with belts; titles will be titles to me. What matters most to me, is what I accomplished in the ring. As I said in the last interview, I am a bit green in this weight class, so it does feel great to achieve this status in the junior middleweight division.

What happened was, I woke up and realized who I was. I’m not someone you KO with ease. It’s as simple as that. I just let it all go, and started to believe. That was how the 1st fight should have gone.


(TFL) Considering you guys are 1-1, is there a chance of one final bout to settle the score?

(DJ Miller) StriKing started taking about a 3rd fight, the night we fought (Laughs), so there definitely will be one. I know Adam will come harder and stronger, and I will do the same. When it comes to motivation, there was one thing Haycraft mentioned that really got me in the zone. After our 1st fight Eric and my instructor Rocky were talking about it and he said, “If that’s how DJ fights when he’s spooked, I’d hate to see him on a good day!” Well, June 1st was it!


Josh Pickthall and Best Muay Thai


(TFL)Today we have with us a Josh Pickthall, from Best Muay Thai in Arizona.
Josh, for those out there that might not know who you are, would you mind introducing yourself?

(Josh Pickthall) Not a problem. My name is Josh Pickthall and I am a native Arizonian. I’m 32 years old and I work on Japanese cars for a living.

(TFL) How long have you been training and fighting?
(Josh Pickthall) I’ve been training Muay Thai for about 13 years and I’ve been competitive for about 4 years.

(TFL) what are your aspirations as a Thai-boxer?
(Josh Pickthall) I honestly started competing because I was looking for some sort of verification or confirmation that what I was practicing in the gym and during sparring would translate or be applied in a real life situation. I remember when I was young getting into petty school/street fights and not really remembering the fight and that always made me very uneasy. I wanted to be in control while in danger. I am impartial to who or where I fight. I’ve always been easy going when it came to opponents or venues. I just like to fight. I trust my trainer and she will tell me who, what, when, and where. Thai Boxing also keeps me healthy.


(TFL) what does your training usually look like, and how much time do you spend investing in to this?

(Josh Pickthall) When I am training for a fight it is very time consuming. I have a full time job so I have limited time during the first half of the day to do anything but work. I’ll normally get my run in at lunch time and try and inhale some protein and greens right after. Once I’m at the gym we jump rope, shadowbox, hit anywhere from 5-10 rounds of pads depending on how many weeks we are out from the fight, bag work, gear up an spar for several rounds, get in a bunch of knees and clinch on the bag, sprints, then some calisthenics to finish the night off. Wash, rinse, repeat up until the fight. I would say I’m at the gym for 3-3 1/2 hours a night 5 days a week. Sometimes class on Saturday depending on whether I’m working or not.

(TFL) I saw that your last fight was against “The Monk”, and I know they thought they were throwing you in there to fluff his recorded. Obviously they didn’t count on you being a tough SOB (Laughs)Care to tell us all about it?

(Josh Pickthall) Ah yes, “the monk fight”. It was actually a last minute decision as I was supposed to fight somewhere on the east coast. The monk had fought one of my teammates a year earlier and got knocked out then too. He originally wanted a rematch with my teammate but my guy was injured and wasn’t fighting anymore. So I stepped in. We knew that the monk had some weird iron face thing he liked to do so we focused on staying aggressive and hitting the body if he got all tensed up. At weigh-ins they said it would be for a title belt and had me and him hold up some random belt that didn’t even have our correct weight class on it. Weird. Once the fight started I was very surprised at how strong he was and the fact that he was clinching up with me and trying to knee. Supposedly we were told no clinching but I don’t remember to be honest. He took an early lead by hitting me square on the button in the first round. I was definitely on shaky leg lane. However, I managed to recover and started finding my range and getting my timing back. There had been a few times he tensed his jaw up and tried to block my punches with his forehead but I wasn’t able to capitalize. It wasn’t until the middle of the second round that I started a series with a kick under his arm, then followed with a right hand, turned to face him square with a jab, right uppercut, and a left hook which put him to sleep. I was very mad after the left hook because I felt extremely disrespected by him lowering his guard to try and take my punches. I stood over him and yelled some not-for-school words until the ref snatched me off. It was funny because afterwards they said I was a military enlisted boxing champion and that Yi Long took a dive. Saying that he threw the fight for money. I’m not an expert in Chinese culture but I’m fairly certain they don’t throw amateur fights to Americans on a regular basis. I didn’t ever get that belt either. Oh well.


(TFL) tell us about your gym, instructor and their back ground?


(Josh Pickthall) I train out of Best Muay Thai in Mesa, Arizona. It is a relatively new gym. Its been here for about 2 years. A very clean and professional atmosphere. I have two trainers. One is Bob Karmel who was one of the first Americans to teach Muay Thai in Thailand. He was training at Fairtex back in the golden age of Muay Thai. Alongside Jongsanan, Bunkerd, Gonyao, Saekson. He is very respected and really knows his shit. My other trainer Sunshine Fetkether is the one who chiseled me into the fighter I am today. She is my pad holder and the person who got me back into competing again. Sunshine has some of the best ring experience and has fought the best of the best in the sport of boxing and Muay Thai.

(TFL) I saw on Facebook that your getting married, wanted to say congratulations. Is it hard balancing the two?


Photo by Galaxie Andrews http://galaxieandrews.com

(Josh Pickthall) I did get married and I couldn’t be happier. Even tho it put a hold on our fighting (my wife Pixi O’Reilly fights too) it’s been awesome. Having a training partner as your wife is perfect. They understand why your hurt or cranky or being a wuss. Everything is going just perfect.



(TFL) Anything else you’d like to add, like obstacle you’ve had to overcome to get this far ect ect?

(Josh Pickthall) Time is your biggest opponent. Whether it be not enough time in the day or not enough time left in your prime. It’s always ticking away. I just try to waste it the best way that I can. Thanks for the interview.

Michael Corley spar night

Corley Spar Night


This past Saturday night was a monumental event for the Houston area fight scene, as several local Muay Thai gyms from and around the Houston area got together to sharpen their skill sets against one another in friendly hard sparring.
Gyms present were 4oz, Gracie Barra Woodlands, Gracie Barra West Chase, Team Tooke, American Combative systems, George Prevalsky’s Muay Thai (Dallas Tx), and yours truly Revolution Dojo Houston.
(If your gym was at the event and wasn’t mentioned, send me you alls name so that I can update this list)
The crowd was excited, and had a blast, cheering “ohaaaay!” With every big kick, knee and punch landed.
Among all things, the gym’s that came out, put on a wonderful display of talent, skill, team work and sportsmanship.
I am very proud of the Houston Muay Thai scene today, as I believe Michael Corley opened the door for a growing talent pool to use and sharpen their skill sets, while having a lot of fun. As I always, say “Iron sharpens Iron”.
As for my team, I couldn’t be more proud of everyone’s performance. As always, I’m constantly critiquing myself and my fighters. This night was not only a great display of their abilities, but a great opportunity to implement continual improvement.
Jose did a great job of staying calm, collected and composed. Something that takes many fighters years to do.
I think our boy is a natural (don’t let it go to your head, Jose.)
Woody did great implementing his combo skills that he’s been working on, and staying in the pocket more.
Jenn did great, landing her punches and delivering her power and following her combos with kicks.
And Sam did great being a more tactical and an intelligent fighter.
Sadly, I didn’t get to hop in the ring, but sometimes I have more fun seeing the fruits of our labor blossom before me, and yelling “ohaaaay!”