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‘Charles versus Lonely Dog?’
A Man Question from Sean about Matching Stick-Fighters
“I’m watching Lonely Dog’s stick videos and was curious who you think would win a straight stick fight, him or Charles?”
-Sean
Sean, the fact that you would ask that question is a huge compliment to Charles, as Lonely Dog is currently the top man among the Dog Brothers. I saw him beat every other guy at a meet in detail. You can find it on their site. Interestingly enough, Charles was wondering this himself. He studies Lonely Dog’s form and felt like they would “be a good match.”
As Charles’ coach, I’m just not going to pick the other guy. In any case, I rarely pick fights like that. For me to pick a guy to win it’s got to look really one-sided.
But let’s discuss this matchup.
Of course, in a Dog Brothers style fight, Lonely Dog wins 9 out of 10.
In a knife fight Charles would kill him 8 out of 10.
By straight stick fight we are talking light gear, which for us is the same as the Dog Brothers. But instead of just eating head shots that would have smashed your skull in and shooting in for the take down, we tap and say, “Yeah, you rang my bell, without mask, that would have been it.”
So how do they match up there?
I pick Charles to win the hand game and head game due to his jab and height and the fact that he fights tall.
However, Lonely Dog is more highly conditioned—the guy must not have a physical job. I don’t know what he does—maybe he’s a full time instructor. But with him, we are looking at a full time fighter. Charles is a part time fighter most of the year, with a physical job dragging heavy stuff, using a screwdriver sometimes eight hours a day. Once, three years ago, Charles and I had a fight lined up. He had been killing me sparring. Then, after a week-long break we go at it and it’s over quick, I got him throw forearm conditioning. I asked him what happened, how come I out chopped him. He had been back at work and his forearm was all seized up. So, since conditioning is such a big deal, I see the fight depending more on whether Charles has been installing wire 12 hours a day while Lonely Dog is training full time.
Sean, this is not a cop out. This is how records are built in pro boxing—a full time fighter on the way up against a part time fighter who just got the call to make weight three days ago.
Now, on the skill front, with the stick, I see them as even. Since he and I started sparring again at the end of July he has improved to the point where he is dropping me with his left hand, knocking the rivets out of my mask with relatively light strokes. But his tip dump timing is so good now he’s raising welts on my skull trough the mask and concussing me with shots that used half or less of the energy expenditure as the shots you finished me with. With weapons, in a duel rather than a brawl, a guy with that kind of timing is really tough to tangle with.
The other variable is stick weight. Light sticks would favor Charles, heavy sticks Lonely Dog and medium weight sticks neither.
Finally, there is mechanical recall to consider. Lonely dog is more athletic—more naturally gifted with balance and reflexes and coordination which gives him the edge in adaptability.
So, if Charles and Lonely Dog where to fight, in a straight stick bout, with light gear and medium weight, 1-inch thick, 28-inch rattan sticks I would with both of them having a six-week camp without work commitments, I see Charles winning 4 of 10—now, considering that he is currently on an uptick, right on the cusp of being incredibly good. I never would have picked him for such a demon with the stick upon first meeting him. But this is what happens when you take a really smart dude and beat the shit out of him for ten years and he doesn’t quit. Where Chares is at right now is just beyond my best in 2013 in terms of effectiveness, and far beyond in terms of form.
While training for your meet with Charles this coming winter, use Lonely Dog’s video drills, and, since you are going to be the tall man, pay attention to how he deals with you guys.
Take care, Sean. See you in the gym when you can make into town again.
Twerps, Goons and Meatshields: The Basics of Full Contact Stick-Fighting
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