When discussing Colorado MMA, you can’t leave out the fight promotions and their respective promoters that bring Mixed Martial Arts fans several great “fight moments” each year across the region. Some of these organizations have been around for years, while others are looking to solidify their foothold in the growing market share.
As we look at the top 5, you have to factor in time established, impact on Colorado MMA, number of fights a year, etc. That being said, every promotion listed puts a quality product on display for fans, with no one leaving disappointed. We are lucky to live in a state where so many thriving promotions are putting on exciting cards almost every month.
Let’s get right to it. Here are the current Top 5 MMA promotions in Colorado and a brief summary of what they each bring to the table:
1.) Ring Of Fire Promoter: Sven Bean – The granddaddy of them all. The Colorado fight promotion most fans in the state first think of in terms of Colorado MMA. I went to my first Ring of Fire show when the fights were held in Castle Rock, and have never been let down. The promotions first card was held on March 18, 2000 and had notable fighters Nathan Marquardt and Leonard Garcia featured on it. Ring Of Fire has seen many other high-profile fighters come through including the likes of Eliot Marshall, Mike Nickels, Donald Cerrone, Shane Carwin, Carlos Condit, and Duane Ludwig to name just a few.
2.) Kickdown MMA Promoter: Steve Alley – Coming in a close second, the Kickdown MMA promotion has been holding fights in both Colorado and Wyoming for years now, becoming a staple of the Colorado MMA scene. The promotions first fight took place in Golden on February 23rd of 2002. The Red Lion hotel ballroom in Denver is where most Kickdown MMA events are held, making a great atmosphere for a night of fights.
3.) Fight To Win Promoter: Seth Daniels – One of the newer promotions, Fight To Win has been holding events since early 2008 and is quickly becoming one of the top promotions in Colorado. At the time of this writing, Seth Daniels had just made Colorado history with the “The Professionals”, billed as the states first all professional card. Fight To Win also hosts the Tournament Of Champions grappling competitions occasionally, which are welcomed in the region as much as they are needed.
4.) Rocky Mountain Bad Boyz Promoter: Keith Schmeltzer – Promoting MMA cards in both Denver and Greeley, RMBB has been putting on shows since 2005. The RMBB crowds are some of the best, as there is something about packing fans into Red and Jerry’s in Denver and the Island Grove Events Center in Greeley that adds to the buzz in the air on fight night. In addition, there was a need of MMA fights in Northern Colorado that RMBB has filled nicely.
5.) No Mercy Extreme Fighting Promoter: Natalie Mort – NME Fighting generally holds it’s events at the Colorado Springs City Auditorium and has been doing so since 2007. No Mercy Extreme Fighting was edged out slightly by RMBB due to the number of years in operation, but definitely is a top 5 promotion in the state, putting on several events a year. Check them out!
**Honorable Mention** Bring The Thunder MMA Promoter: Leister Bowling – Colorado’s newest promotion (at the time of this writing) started things off with a bang on Sept. 11th 2010 at the CSU-Pueblo campus. The event featured a stacked card with Colorado’s own Eliot Marshall in the main event and a guest appearance by Shane Carwin. With Bowling’s strong ties to the fight game, watch for Bring The Thunder MMA to knock somebody off this list in 2011.
Obviously we are lucky to be MMA fans and reside in Colorado, as all promotions here have something to offer. It really just comes down to taking some time to enjoy Colorado MMA.
See you at the fights!