Kenny Booker: Always Looking for the KO


Kenny Booker signing Bellator contract, courtesy Suckerpunch Ent.

by Matt Lo Cascio

Another Midwest Training Center fighter is headed to a major promotion. Kenny “The Gorilla” Booker officially signed his deal with Bellator, and will make his first appearance for the promotion on December 14 in Hammond.

Booker will take on Ohio’s Robert White at Bellator 84, and he’s preparing for the bout with a TUF-style regimen — minus all the insanity and antics.

“Training is going good. I’m living at the MTC fighter house so I’m training all day,” Booker said. “It’s awesome! You know, just guys willing to sacrifice being comfortable for a win. I have great teammates. It’s just me my bro Pat Hastings and our new Muay Thai coach (living in the house), so it’s fine.”

Booker signed a three-fight deal with Bellator, and hopes to parlay it into a shot at Bellator’s next lightweight tourney.

“The plan is to win all three then have a tourney bid fight. Hopefully I’ll be in next years tourney,” Booker said.

That’s not a far-fetched plan. Booker has two impressive wins in his first two pro fights. He choked out Jay Ellis in the first round of their fight this past June, and scored a unanimous decision victory over the always-tough Ryan Storey at HFC 10 in his pro debut.

Booker didn’t go into detail on how he plans to beat White on December 14, save for the key component to all his fights.

“I’m always looking for the KO,” Booker said.

His track record suggests that’s true. He won all of his amateur bouts by knockout or TKO and is one of the Chicago area’s most exciting fighters.

Booker is a fun follow on Facebook and Twitter, and often uses those mediums to get things off his chest. He recently tweeted about some of the haters that spouted off after he signed the Bellator deal.

“Some people say I don’t deserve my @BellatorMMA contract. Well the fact is I’ve done in 10 months as a pro what you couldn’t in 10 years. #FACT,” read the Tweet.

Booker elaborated on who he was talking about in that Tweet.

“There are other fighters from Rockford that are jealous of the things I’ve been able to accomplish in just over 3 years of doing this. My message to them is just watch me on on December 14th.”

The Bellator 84 card will also feature a rematch between Team Curran’s Felice Herrig and Michele Gutierrez.

The fights will take place at The Venue at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, and will conclude Bellator’s seventh season. Tickets are on sale now and are available at Horseshoe Casino, Ticketmaster,, or by calling 1-800-745-3000.

About Matt Lo Cascio

Matt Lo Cascio is the co-founder and editor of Chicago's MMA. He is the former play-by-play announcer for the XFO and other organizations, and he has been published by, DraftKings, The Comeback, FanSided, and more.

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