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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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am 10. März 2000
While I enjoy true stories and respect and admire what Ken Shamrock has accomplished in his life and career, he should have chosen a more neutral person to write his story. While there is no question Shamrock is one of the greatest fighters in the world today, the author paints an unfair picture of some of the opponents Ken has faced. Bottom line: Royce Gracie beat Shamrock once and Shamrock never defeated Royce. They did fight to a draw in their second bout, but Shamrock never won a match against Gracie. Yet the author describes Gracie as going to great lengths to avoid facing Ken. Remember, Gracie was 178 lbs and Shamrock was around 215-220. The author also unfairly badmouths Dan Severn. I saw the second superfight between the two, and anyone who says Severn unfairly won, is kidding themselves. Severn escaped the mount and reversed positions which is rarely done in a real fight. The author complains that Detroit laws prevented Shamrock from going all out, and Severn violated the laws to win. FALSE! Ken shamrock NEVER won a UFC tournament and Severn won 2. Shamrock won Superfights but never won a 3 fight tournament. I think this author is a whiner, and reading this book, one gets the impression Shamrock whines also. I hope that is not the case. Too bad such an inspiring story was written by such a louse. Get this book and ignore the authors implicit tones. Enjoy Shamrock's story as it truly is inspiring.
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am 11. Februar 2000
This book will not only intrigue fans of all types of fighting styles that Ken Shamrock has competed in, it will also serve as a source of motivation and inspiration for all.
The book is creatively and effectively divided into two parts. The first half is ghost written, or at least co-authored, and chronicles Ken's life. It is a brief, yet very thorough and captivating life story.
The second half is a nuts and bolts introduction to all aspects of competing in mixed martial arts - from eating to strength training to technique.
"Inside The Lion's Den" is more than just a book about a tough guy who won some fighting contests and became a pro wrestler. "Inside The Lion's Den" delves deep into the trials and tribulations that chronicle Ken's awkward upbringing. His childhood was far from, "The Cosby Show" yet it is explained in a way that is quite unlike most biographies of high profile stars that claim of such horrible childhood life.
Too often are we subjected to a "Where Are They Now" documentary by some celebrity telling us that they were mentally abused, or how their horribly painful past forced them into a drug plagued life. Ken Shamrock doesn't mirror this all to common pattern. He simply tells about his life - and it doesn't appear to be one that most of us would have wanted at times.
The second half of the book can, and will, put any reader who isn't a professional athlete or combatant into shape. One will be surprised at the amount of inside information that Shamrock shares. I've met many mixed martial artists and several of them couldn't complete the training regimen that is covered here.
Some have belittled Shamrock for having the book co-authored, but that is a very unfair criticism. Ken Shamrock is a master fighter - an athlete - a competitor. He has a great story to share with us. Does any of that make him qualified to transfer that to paper and deliver it in a manner that is entertaining and interesting? No.
That is no disrespect to Ken. He is a master at what he does. And he is very smart for having a co-author. I would assume that Ken, and most of you, have an accountant prepare your taxes. We all bring in experts to handle tasks for us. There is no shame in that.
Professional wrestlers have amazing stories to tell and they are finally being shared with us all.
I am proud to say that I have been given the opportunity to work with wrestling legend, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka on his biography and a documentary. I hope that when the book is available through, many of you will come and review it. And in the interim, while it is being written, let me know what you would like covered in the book that is tentatively being titled, "Tales From The Top Of The Cage."
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am 18. April 2000
One cannot fathom exactly how horrifying it must be just before you enter the octagon, and still fewer can actually judge what goes on in the ring. Except those who were in the fight. Anyone who for a moment questions Shamrock's decision, and says he isn't qualified to make that claim, I recommend they first check their qualification. Many people tell me this book was merely for Shamrock to point out how he was cheated, I think this book is great and first hand recollection of the actual events in the UFC.
It must be pointed out that Shamrock does tell an accurate and fair story about his opponents. Take for example Oleg Taktarov, who Ken openly compliments in his description of him. And few can say that they had Gracie even near defeat, save Kino and Shamrock. Perhaps Detroit laws did prevent Shamrock from dessimating Severn, perhaps they did not; nevertheless Shamrock is NOT a whiner, and his book is NOT a collection of Shamrock's own subjective commentaries, rather the book is an informative guide to the life of Shamrock, and the amazingly effective shootfighting tactics he explains in the latter portion of the book.
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am 14. Januar 2000
I just wanted to say that I think this is a great book and a must buy for both Ken Shamrock and mixed martial arts fans. Please do not believe the hype from some of the other reviews stating that the book is unduly biased. That simply is not true. Mr. Shamrock openly reveals his mistakes in his losses and does not ridicule or down grade any opponent, ie: he speaks well of the Gracies, explains what caused the personal frictions between him and Dan Severn. Many times people confuse confidence with cockiness, as the great Muhammad Ali used to say, "It ain't braggin if you can do it!" Being the first King of Pancrase, and the first Superfight Champion, Ken Shamrock was the best mixed martial artist in the world; he has definitely proven that he can do what he says. Yes Ken Shamrock is confident, but he is not arrogant. Many interesting insights you'll learn about his personal life, the politics of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, his fighting style, and the Lion's Den. Buy it if you're a fan of Ken Shamrock!
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am 15. September 1999
If you were a fan of Ken Shamrock in any of the fighting circuits then this book should proveide an extreemly good read. If you only know Ken from WWF the this will tell you how he got to be the worlds most dangerous man. I have seen reviews people have written here saying its one sided and untrue but i have to say this is so wrong. Ken Shamrock is my rolemadel and has been for many years. The book is written about him so obviously it will contain information about his great skills and his victories. But when i read the book i found that both ken and Richard spent a fair bit talking about the amazing skills and techniques used by his opponents and how he lost his few matches and why that came about. Not biased at all in my opinion. The History part of the book is both interesting and informative where as the last section about the lions den training and the moves is extreemly good. Have a go at trying a few when someone gets on your nerves!! You will love this book. I know i do!
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am 18. März 1999
Ken Shamrock has certainly made a name for himself in the world of NHB fighting. However, I found the book to be a little over the top in self indulgent praise. Who has he beaten? He had a lackluster fight with Taktarov in a super fight. If he is a great submission specialist, how come he couldn't get a submission from a human punching bag like Taktarov? Also, he was completely timid and lost to Dan Severn. He isn't fighting anymore so even though I found the book interesting with regards to his life history, I think people need to put Ken Shamrock's abilities in perspective. I can't recall him defeating anyone of any skill level, and he won't fight anyone anymore anyway. I want to believe in Ken Shamrock's skills, but first I have to see them! Please Ken, return to the UFC and back up the image you created in your informative book. Would you have the courage to fight Tom Erickson (if SEG wants him) or perhaps a UFC veteran with some real skills?
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am 6. Juli 1998
The first section of the book, a biography of Ken Shamrock, is a very interesting read. It begins from Shamrock's humble beginnings and ends after his loss to Dan Severn. For those who follow pro-wrestling, it will be insightful as both these athletes have now entered the WWF. While it is true that the author overemphasizes some of Shamrock's victories and glosses over his losses, it still presents a good idea of how tough the sport of fighting truely is. I found the sections detailing Shamrock's evolution as a fighter and the training of his famed Lions' Den to be the most fascinating and inspirational. The second portion focuses on Shamrock's system of fighting. It goes over the basic submissions and positions. Nothing too ground-breaking. Ken goes over the diet and physical training of his fighters. 5 Stars for those who follow MMA or wrestling 4 stars for those simply looking for an interesting read
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am 10. September 1999
I read this book already like 3 times, and I cant tell you how many times Ive read it sitting on the bowl, traveling, or just reading it to see if someone will actually know what it is I'm reading and make a new friend. This book definately portrayed Ken Shamrock as the man I thought he was. I barely got into the UFC in March of 99' and I rented #1 through #17 in about 1 month. Ken was automatically one of my favorites when he lost so graciously to Royce in UFC#1, it showed me that "Hey, theres actually some smart people out there", you know. Anyway, good book,good pictures,and my mom only read the first opening page or something and said, "See Danny, this guy conquered his inner demons,isn't that good?" I said "Yeah , I know isn't that cool,I think I can do the same thing." So if your out there Ken, thank you, and keep it up!
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This book is divided into two sections. The first section is the short history of Ken Shamrock by Richard Hanner. The second section is the "fundamentals" of Shamrock's submission system. Part 1 is highly one-sided. The events being written are seen from Shamrock's perspective an undercuts all his opponents, over-glorifying some of his wins, and making weak excuses for his rare losses. Part 1 should only be read when the reader has enough background info her/himself to compare and contrast what went on in Shamrock's mind. Part 2 is basically something you would read in a boxer's workout handbook. Shamrock does have unique and seemingly effective holds for submission and intoduces more positions than the regular 5 (he lists 10). The photos flow poorly when it comes to instructional value. This book is only for Ultimate Fighting Championship or WWF followers.
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