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Team Koscheck gets a win

October 13, 2010|By Grant Gordon

GLENDALE - [UPDATED: 9:18 p.m.] With the fame and notoriety of being on a reality television show and the supreme prize of a six-figure contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship incentive enough, cast members of "The Ultimate Fighter" are also privy to training and learning from some of the best in the mixed-martial-arts business.

"When I was on 'Ultimate Fighter' season one, I know how naive I was and how I didn't know anything about MMA and I was a sponge and I took advantage of it, learning from Chuck Liddell," said Coach Josh Koscheck, beginning the latest episode of "The Ultimate Fighter," which aired on Wednesday night on Spike TV. "Hopefully these guys will take advantage of the guys that we have here."

Koscheck, the coach of Team Koscheck, which includes Glendale grapplers Sako Chivichyan and Sevak Magakian, brought in some extra help for his team in the latest episode - most notably UFC Hall of Famer Chuck "The Iceman" Liddell and Jon Fitch.


"It opened my eyes," said Chivichyan of the experience of meeting, training and learning from UFC fighters. "It made me a little more serious about my career. It made me ask questions about the path they took to get where they got.

"They're all mentally tough and they have a drive. That opened my eyes in my career."

The help began with Koscheck's teammate at American Kickboxing Academy, Fitch, a former UFC welterweight title contender and largely considered the No. 2 welterweight in the world.

Fitch trained with the members of Team Koscheck, but it appeared as if the true highlight was meeting Liddell, who walked into the gym and was immediately greeted with a round of applause.

Perhaps the most recognizable mainstream figure in MMA's brief history, Liddell showed up and offered some advice to the burgeoning crop of Koscheck-coached fighters.

"It was a great feeling to see Chuck there," Magakian said. "It was a great experience cause he's the champ."

Magakian and Chivichyan were shown to be particularly grateful to talk to the UFC legend and former two-time "TUF" coach, including the show's groundbreaking first season in which Koscheck was one of his pupils.

"It was [very] motivational seeing Chuck Liddell and talking to him," said Chivichyan in a confessional. "I think the yellow team needed this boost and Chuck was somebody that we could relate to and the stuff he told us made a lot of sense and keeps me focused."

Liddell's advice was simple, but seemed to resonate.

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