September 13, 2007

by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
International Fight League Commissioner Kurt Otto, on Wednesday night, confirmed the release of Anacondas coach Shawn Tompkins after a successful run as head coach for the squad.

Tompkins took over the Anacondas as the handpicked successor to original head coach Bas Rutten earlier this year in March.

MMAWeekly caught up with Tompkins, who commented on his departure from the IFL.

“It was something that Kurt and I and Bas talked about midway through last season,” said Tompkins. “I’m training so many people out here (at Xtreme Couture) and as well as my home base, I always have to remember is Team Tompkins, and the guys I train out there I owe a lot to.”

According to Tompkins, it was the time commitment and travel schedule that led to the mutual decision between himself and the IFL to part ways.

“Just with that kind of a commitment, and the timing with the IFL, I mean, the travel schedule is so demanding out there and I was just spreading myself way too thin,” stated Tompkins.

“It was a mutual agreement between the three of us, and really it was a lot of me. I brought it to the attention of them that I felt like I was being pulled too much. The IFL, I had a great time with them, they treated me awesome. I think of Kurt and Gareb as very good friends. No hard feelings at all.”

In an interview with MMAWeekly a few weeks ago, Tompkins confirmed his move to Las Vegas to take on lead trainer duties for the highly in demand Xtreme Couture gym. The former IFL coach also attributes that job as a reason for leaving the organization.

“I just moved to Las Vegas, Nev. I took on a job as the lead instructor and gym manager at Xtreme Couture here and I’m getting married in about 7 months, so there are so many things going on in my life that it just wasn’t fair to some of the guys that I’ve been training for multiple years.”

As far as some of Tompkins top students who fight in the IFL, the former coach says they are staying put with the promotion.

“Guys like Jay Hieron and Chris Horodecki, they’re real happy being in the IFL,” said Tompkins. “I’m still going to be training them; I just won’t be on the same travel schedule as they are.

“I won’t be at all the events and in their corner. I mean Chris Horodecki is like my son and he’s very happy with the IFL and he has plans of winning the Grand Prix championship and being with the Anacondas next year.”

With a number of fighters from Xtreme Couture on the docket with upcoming bouts, it is no doubt that Tompkins will remain busy with his new job at the training center.