Three Big Wins for Tumbler Ridge at the Ray House Memorial Fight Night

Lynsey Kitching

In front of about 600 people at the George Dawson Inn, Kanyon Gleeson knocked out his opponent after about a round a half in a Thai-boxing fight. “This is just another person who is standing in front of me and what I want in my life,” is what Gleeson told himself before stepping into the ring.

Gleeson’s fight against Hector Blackwater was during the Ray House Memorial Fight Night. House was a fighter and promoter who passed away in December.

Gleeson’s coach Paul Rosborough says, “It was good, everyone was evenly matched. Being a memorial show there was a bit of emotion involved. Ray was a good guy.”

Phil Dufresne was also fighting at the event and after a whole lot of aggressive kicks to the legs; his opponent had had enough before the end of the first round. He beat Kyle Mineault, who was competing in his second fight.

Rosborough says, “That guy is still not walking right. Phil kicks extremely hard. It’s like taking a bat to the leg, except in this case the bat’s over 100 pounds. Phil followed a game plan and the other guy didn’t know how to deal with it.”

Gleeson’s opponent also didn’t know how to deal with his punches. “I’m not really satisfied with any of my fights; there is always room for improvement. I got the knock out though, so I was happy. I used the right hand and then to finish it off I used another right hand.”

Though this fight went in Gleeson’s favour, the last time he met Blackwater, the fight was over in about seven seconds due to injury. Rosborough explains the differences between this last fight and the one previous, “Kanyon just made him look bad for the whole first round. They had fought in October. Kanyon sprained his knee seven seconds into the fight. It was ruled a no contest, not a loss. This was a re-match. He probably spent half the first round getting over what happened in the first fight. He just jabbed the crap outta him and eventually the kid just couldn’t defend himself anymore. The ref stopped it; he didn’t need to take anymore.”

Though Gleeson’s knee was healed from the sprain, it’s always a battle of mind over matter, but in the end the injury has made him a better fighter.

“That thing with his knee was pretty scary. He protects kicks pretty good now, so it happened for a reason,” says Rosborough.

Throughout BC different fights are put on by different promoters, but they are all sanctioned through the government. Rosborough is hoping to bring the action to Tumbler Ridge. “I’m hoping to start an armateur circuit. So that would mean we’d have fights right here in Tumbler. I think the town would get behind that. It’s just a matter of getting the guys and a venue. I’d like to use the ice rink, but it’d have to be in the summer.” Though Gleeson is only 18, he has big dreams, layers of potential and loves training with Rosborough and Dufresne, because he’s learning the skills to be a champion…the hard way. Gleeson says, “When I spar with Phil it’s a pain in the butt, ’cause I keep falling on my butt.”

The last congratulations shout out is to Mike Dufresne and his fighter Sean Cyr who won fight of the night against Bryant Kersey. You can check out this fight on YouTube.

The next battle for Gleeson will be in March where he hopes to maintain his knockout record which has him currently ranked in the top four for BC.

Gleeson says, “I wanna be the best. That is a goal I am going to achieve.”