Get to Know: Jordan Pankey

Record: (am 4-2)

Age: 25

Height: 6’3”

Weight: 230 pounds

Social Media: (link here)

12799325_463477433777116_4088294883220063197_nWhile some mixed martial artists arrive to the sport with storied backgrounds in karate, jiu-jitsu, wrestling, boxing, or some other martial medium, Jordan Pankey tested his hands at MMA with a lifetime of football under his belt. Trading in his pads and helmet for a pair of shorts and six-ounce gloves, the native of Northern California rushed, after tasting the addictive elixir of prizefighting, to El Dorado Hills’s rolling landscape to pair his athleticism and adaptability with MMAGOLD.

For as long as Pankey can remember, the football field was a laboratory of sorts, a place to experiment with his toughness. Presently, Pankey displays the same determination in the cage that was evident on the field, and he accredited his mother for modeling, in her day-to-day life, how to draw a line in the sand—set goals, tuck your chin—persevere, and push forward—never give up: a prize winning potion,

“Playing football when I was little, I had to push myself and prove myself. My mom raised us to never run from a challenge. She taught us to be strong in anything we do; you fight and don’t back down.”

During his time as a semi-professional football player in Yuba City, playing for the Twin City Cougars, Pankey slowly began to sneak the latest news in MMA between the team’s playbook. More and more, the thought of leaving the gridiron to compete between iron gates gelled with Pankey’s ambitions as an athlete. Once his passion for football ran thin, he speared through the first cage door he could find like a linebacker finished counting alligators,

“I told my buddy, who knows everyone, ‘I want to fight.’ Since I was playing semi-pro football, I told him, ‘Once I’m done with football, I want to fight.’” Pankey hung up his cleats and, again, reached out to his friend who found a cage to compete in, “I didn’t have a background in MMA. Before [going to MMAGOLD] then, I just went in the cage: no experience, no wrestling, no jitz, no kickboxing or boxing. I just thought it would be like some sort of street fight. People always say it isn’t, but I just hopped in there to see what I could do.”

Interestingly enough, the challenge in a twenty-foot cage with tattoos as armament versus a one hundred yard 13244190_793260914142860_426455920079537475_ofarmland with ten others dressed as the Michelin Man bore no concern from Pankey. He merely punched his athletic prowess into his inner GPS to steer him in the right direction. Though his first fight didn’t blaze a path to victory, Pankey perceived the trail he wished to travel would be possible with the proper guide,

“Being athletic, I can adapt to most sports. Give me a couple times to try it, and I can adapt and learn. You don’t really need experience; you need to be a good listener and take in stuff.”

Proving his willingness to listen, friends and family offered Pankey advice if he truly wanted to continue his journey in MMA: They encouraged him to reach out to MMAGOLD’s manager, Dave Hirschbein, and, he did,

“I hit Dave up and told him I wanted to come out there, so he said, ‘Come on up; Come up this week and train and let’s see what you have.’”

Pankey’s first visit with MMAGOLD was eye-opening, to say the least.  He described his takeaways from that day,

“I went in there swinging my right hand. I was over there sparring in the southpaw, and I’m orthodox, just realizing it’s a totally different ballgame. I thought I was decent at wrestling, or even jitz, and I wasn’t. It wasn’t that I was bad at it, but the team was good. MMAGOLD is good, and it woke me up.”

13227524_489157947875731_6402459803888640515_o (1)Since joining MMAGOLD in 2014, Pankey has progressed steadily; in fact, he recently claimed ownership of the NorCal Fight Series (NCFS) amateur cruiserweight title at NCFS 2. With each passing minute, either on the practice mats or wedged in the middle of bells, Pankey continues to shore his footing as a prospect. Of course, the football player can be removed from the field, but Pankey would argue: if you put that football player where he’s still licensed to smash another human being to the ground, there’s no pause in attempting to turn those bones into powder. He shared the smash-mouth mindset he carries into the cage from the football field,

“Playing defense and offense; you go in and, on offense, you dip your head into a hole and hit em’, and on defense, you run in, dip low, and hit em’.” He then detailed how this adds to his fighting style, “So when people stand there to trade with me; if they get too cocky and run in firing at me, I dip down like a tackle, pick em’ up, and slam them.”

As Pankey moves forward in his MMA career, meshing proper technique with his own unique interpretation, he’ll pose a threat to any opponent because, with no yellow flags to worry about, he’ll aim to drive his opposition through the canvas, leaving everyone begging for an instant replay.