By Mr. Timothy Oberle (8th Army)May 6, 2015
YONGSAN, Republic of Korea (May 4, 2015) -- Eighth Army hosted mixed martial artists from the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and the Top Fighting Championship May 2 at the Collier Community Fitness Center at U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan in Seoul, South Korea as part of their annual Modern Army Combatives Tournament.
The fighters were invited along with demonstration teams from the International TeukGong MooSool Federation and the Korea Hapkido Federation to promote esprit de corps amongst competitors and entertain audience members.
Two of the UFC fighters who performed for attendees are scheduled for the card at the upcoming UFC "Fight Night Manila" May 16 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Philippines. Despite having a few of his best fighters preparing for major UFC fights, Top FC and Korean Top Team President Ha, Dong Jin wanted to ensure that the Soldiers were treated to a great performance.
"I don't think they (U.S. Soldiers) have met Korean MMA fighters from the TOP FC or UFC in person or have seen them demonstrate MMA so closely before," said Ha. "So I thought this would be a perfect opportunity for both sides to meet and interact to help build a better relationship between the U.S. and South Korea through MMA."
"With two of our fighters on an upcoming UFC card, we maintain a tight schedule, but we really wanted to come out and support the U.S. Army at this tournament because we truly value the partnership we have with them," added Ha.
Bang, Tae Hyun, one of the mixed martial artists scheduled to fight in two weeks took time away from his busy training schedule because of his respect for the Alliance between the U.S. and the Republic of Korea.
"The US-ROK Alliance is very important because it has helped South Korea become what it is today," said Bang. "I hope the alliance between our two countries continues to strengthen in the future."
Lim, Hyun Gyu, the other fighter scheduled to fight at the upcoming UFC Fight Night left the tournament impressed with the MMA skills of the Soldiers.
"Not every MMA fighters get a chance to visit a U.S. Army base to demonstrate their MMA skills, so it is such a great honor for me to be involved in this tournament," said Lim. "I am especially impressed by the enthusiasm and fighting spirit that U.S. Soldiers showed us today during the tournament. Their eyes were bright and shining throughout the event so I was inspired by their passion and fighting spirit."