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Inside the Lion's Den: The Life and Submission Fighting System of Ken Shamrock Paperback – Mar 1998


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Inside the Lion's Den: The Life and Submission Fighting System of Ken Shamrock + This is Gonna Hurt: The Life of a Mixed Martial Arts Champion + Becoming the Natural: My Life in and Out of the Cage
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Tuttle Publishing (Mar. 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0804831513
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804831512
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 600,695 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Synopsis

This is the story of Ken Shamrock's rise from troubled youth to world-famous martial arts champion. The book aims not only to inspire the reader, but to teach the secrets of Shamrock's submissions fighting system and training regime.

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First Sentence
Ken Shamrock, the first King of Pancrase, three-time Ultimate Fighting Superfight Champion, winner of numerous bar brawls and Toughman wars, widely regarded as the finest no-holds-barrel fighter in the world, is being booed. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 21 Sept. 2000
Format: Paperback
If you train in or watch MMA then this is a must-buy book. It makes you feel like you are in the world of MMA and you`ll train even harder. BUT it is full of inaccuracies and half-truths that serve to exaggerate Shanmrock`s standing. Its as if being a top ten fighter is not enough, they want to make out he`s the greatest ever.
Crucial facts left out include: Dan Severn was choked out by Royce Gracie (UFC4) before Ken did it; The Oleg Taktarov was actually a draw, and very competitive; In the rematch with Royce, its true that Shamrock bloodied him, but its also true that if it had gone to points Royce would have won because he was the only person trying to win. Shamrock tried nothing for 30 minutes until a single punch messed Royce`s eye; Before the book was finished, Shamrock had lots of defeats in Pancrase, including being choked out by Funaki, heel-hooked by Suzuki, knocked out by Frank Lobman in a kickboxing match. Also it glosses over the fact some Pancrase matches were `worked` (i.e. predetermined outcomes); Ken has never finished a MMA tournament - he always gets injured; Dan Severn is the only truly top class fighter in his prime that Shamrock has beaten - Kimo is 2nd tier, Dan won the rematch, Brian Johnston was not a `kickboxing champion` (he later lost to Kimo, too).
Don`t be put off. Shamrock is a legitmate champion, its just that the book would have you believe he was the undisputed king of MMA or something. His achievements are actually exceeded by his brother Frank.
Since the book, Ken returned to MMA in Japan`s Pride organisation this year. He knocked out the tough Alexander Otsuka and then got knocked out against the formidable Kazuyuki Fujita in a fight Ken was winning easily until he ran out of gas.
I really enjoyed the book and would have given it 5 stars if not for the bias towards Ken that doe other fighters a disservice and denies the reader a full appreciation of Shamrock`s standing.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 24 Dec. 1998
Format: Paperback
I am such a fan of NHB fighting that I was going to buy this book regardless of how good it was. I actually expected it to be written sort of like a long "Black Belt Magazine" article, but I was pleasantly surprised by how well the biography section of the book was written. There are alot of things in the book that even the most ardent Shamrock fan would not know, but the information sometimes has to be taken with a grain of salt because of occasional pro-Shamrock bias. For instance, it was written that Dan Severn ran away from Shamrock in their fight in UFC IX. Come on! The second section of the book, submission fighting instruction, is not as well done and made me want to give the book three and one half stars rather than four, but I guess this isn't Star Search.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 12 Aug. 1999
Format: Paperback
The first half of the book, written by Hammer - a self confessed cynical reporter not initially interested in the subject - shows the amount that Ken Shamrock inspires the people around him. Hammer transforms from an outsider who knows little of NHB fighting to an astute commentator on the subject of Shamrock's training. At times the tone is slightly one-sided but that is to be expected, this is not an empirical study of all sides it is a biography of one man. Despite this the book is a fantastic insight into the training and atmosphere behind the UFC.
I am amazed that this review section has become a forum for the discussion of Shamrock's credibility, even if you do not rate him as a fighter then his influence as a trainer must be acknowledged. This is covered in the second half of the book, techniques, training tips and descriptions of the training set-up at the Lion's Den blend well together to give a picture of the future of submission fighting.
Buy this book - even if you are not into NHB or Shamrock himself - it makes you want to go and do some hard fighting. The literary equivalent of the first Rocky movie - which always makes me want to go and workout on half a cow.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 15 May 1998
Format: Paperback
This book is divided into two sections. The first is a biography of Ken Shamrock, focusing primarily on his fighting career. Its tone is somewhat odd; on the one hand, it frequently reads as a very hero-worshippy accounting of Shamrock's accomplishments. On the other, the book is very honest about Shamrock's personal and professional shortcomings, including his often delinquent childhood and his struggle to control a violent temper. The second section is a submission-primer. I believe this section is really only useful to those with some martial arts background already; novices will be lost as there is little information on transitions and other details needed to make the techniques work. However, it is a somewhat useful introduction. For those with the background, this section gives a glimpse at how the Lion's Den fighters train, and helps explain their success. Overall, this book is of value to anyone who is a fan of the UFC or Ken Shamrock.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Chief. on 30 Jan. 2002
Format: Paperback
Ken Shamrock is the finest mixed martial artist in the world - or at least he would be if he was half as good as he is described in this book!

There is no doubt that Shamrock is one of the origional pioneers of the UFC and that he has helped populise the mixed martial art genre of fighting, however the fact remains that alot of what appears in his biography is myth based on fact.

For Richard Hanner to place Shamrock as one of the finest fighters of his generation, superceeded only by Bruce Lee and Royce Gracie is nonsense! Indeed, I have to admit that Shamrock probably wouldnt even rank in the top ten heavywieghts in the business despite being a huge fan of the man myself!

Read the biography with a pinch of salt and watch some of Shamrocks early UFC performances if you want the truth about his 'legendary' fights with the likes of Gracie and Severn and amateurs such as Kimo Leopold.

The training manual however is an excellent piece of literature for those beginning or interested in the mixed martial arts. It is well illustrated and descriptive and offers all of the basic manouvres needed by the budding martial artist. Excellent!

Generally you should not be dissapointed by this book, but dont try to convince anyone with any knowledge of the mixed martial arts that Shamrock was the greatest or you will simply get laughed at!

EDIT

Years later and after the explosion in popularity of MMA it has to be said that this book has now become largely irrelevant.

If you are looking for an insight into Shamrocks biography you would be much better served reading his more recent book 'Beyond the Lions Den' (although you should still take everything he says with a pinch of salt and read my review of that product).
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