Idris Elba is one of Hollywood’s top actors, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t willing to step in the ring and throw down.
He recently released a three part series on The Discovery Channel called Idris Elba: Fighter. The series follows Elba as he prepares for his professional Kickboxing debut.
It is pretty cool to see an A list Hollywood actor not only like Kickboxing, but that he is willing to actually participate in it. In the series Elba trains with some of the best fighters in the world including Buakaw and Tyrone Spong. His head coach throughout is Double K Gym’s Kieran Keddle.
When watching the series I always felt there was no way Elba was going to lose his Kickboxing debut, but when seeing the training he was going through I started to question if he could win. For starters the British actor is 44, so age definitely seemed to be a factor in his training sessions. I have to hand it to the man though, he pushed through and was working hard. I assumed they would just line up an easy fight for his debut, but it wasn’t a cake walk. They got him Lionel Graves, who isn’t a world beater, but he trains at the renowned Mike’s Gym in Holland.
For those that don’t know, Mike’s Gym is one of the top gyms in the world for Kickboxers. Some of the names that have trained at the gym or currently train there include Murthel Groenhart, Gokhan Saki, Badr Hari, and Melvin Manhoef. Based on where he trains at, Graves had to pose some sort of legitimate threat to Elba.
Once the fight rolled around I have to admit that I was impressed with Elba. Not only did he make it to the ring to make his professional Kickboxing debut, he was able to win.
In the video you see Elba take some heavy shots, and early on it looks like he might be in trouble.
Even his coach Kieran Keddle expresses his concern, but Elba stays composed and starts to fire back. Now the video by Discovery makes the action look way better than it does in real time because they slow some things down and we all know that everything looks better in slow motion. There is video on YouTube of a portion of the fight in real time and they aren’t fighting at blazing speed, but they are working hard and throwing some hard shots at each other.
Eventually in one of their exchanges Elba is able to put Graves down with a knee to the body. Even more surprising is how much of a savage Elba is. As Graves is on his way down he tried to punch him one last time. You have to love that fight until the end attitude.
The whole three part series is very entertaining and worth a watch, but if you rather just watch a recap of the action in his pro Kickboxing debut then you can see it below. Not that it matters to Elba, but that man has earned my respect to the fullest.