Before Johny Hendricks knocked out Jon Fitch and Martin Kampmann, he punched an arcade-style punching machine for fun… and the rest was history.
Back when Hendricks was still new to the sport of MMA, him and Team Takedown founder Ted Ehrhardt decided to test a machine that was supposed to measure a person’s punching power. It was right after an autograph signing at a UFC expo in London, England. The results were shocking.
In a recent interview with MMAJunkie.com, Ehrhardt recalled the unforgettable incident.
“Jon Jones had hit it,” Ehrhardt said. “Matt Mitrione and some other heavyweights had also hit it. Then Johny hit it, and he beat everybody’s scores. We just kind of thought, hey, wow.”
The very next day, they visited a boxing gym in London that also had a punching machine. The records of the hardest punches were all performed by heavyweights.
“So Johny hit that one, and he broke that record too,” Ehrhardt recalled. “That’s when the switch flipped for both of us, and we thought, there’s some real power in that left hand.”
Many members of Team Takedown were surprised that a man who was recruited into mixed martial arts for his wrestling ability had such immense knockout power. Kevin Hendricks, Johny’s father, wasn’t surprised at all.
The elder Hendricks said that kind of physical strength “sort of runs in our family.”
Johny Hendricks will get his chance to put his knockout power to good use when he fights George St. Pierre for the UFC Welterweight Championship on Saturday at UFC 167.