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Claremore native Reeder excelling as pro mixed martial arts fighter

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June 29. Tracey Reader doesn’t take the word “can’t” very well.

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This is probably why he can’t seem to lose when he enters a closed octagon. The 2017 Claremore High School graduate is a professional mixed martial artist and has a 5-0 record at 155 pounds (lightweight) with three knockouts and two submissions.

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Reeder, who qualified three times for the state zebra wrestling tournament under trainer Chad Willard and finished second at 145 pounds in his senior class, won four of his five fights in less than three minutes.

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“Probably the best part of the fight is those 10 seconds of running around the cage after you just won,” Rieder said. “I mean, it’s – for lack of a better word – it’s a drug. It really is. And there is nothing that can compare with it. It’s just knowing that you’ve put in months of hard work… so when it all comes true, it’s a drug and a rush that nothing really compares to.”

In his first professional fight, Rieder, dubbed Oklahoma’s fastest growing prospect, took just 1 minute 56 seconds to knock out and win.

The 23-year-old has only been in the sport for three years, but Rieder made the decision to become a fighter at the age of eight after his father introduced him to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

“I always knew I would grow up to fight,” Rieder said. “I wrestled in college but it didn’t really work out the way it was supposed to and I ended up dropping out of school. It just felt like the time had come to fulfill the dream.”

However, this pursuit did not start the way he had imagined.

After leaving the University of Central Oklahoma wrestling program with plans to join some former high school teammates at Labette Community College in Parsons, Kansas, Reeder received a message that would change the course of his life and career.

It was Larry Pejak, owner of Pejak Martial Arts at 401 E 5th St. in Claremore, who offered him a position as a wrestling coach at the gym once a week. In return, he will be trained in jiu-jitsu and other MMA disciplines.

“I thought, ‘Yes, I’m in,’ and from day one I knew I wasn’t going to school,” Rieder said. “I knew I was going to train and start fighting. I only had a year left to wrestle in college, so I was just going to be there (Labette) for a year and try to get back to another bigger school, but obviously it didn’t work that way.”

Soon Rieder was on his way to MMA glory.

Despite continuing to elevate his career in recent months, Rieder remains a regular at local gyms.

He still calls Pejak Martial Arts his home gym, honing his jiu-jitsu and wrestling skills there, as well as training at Trinity Martial Arts in Pryor and Clinch Martial Arts in Owasso.

In addition, most of his fights are held at the River Spirit Casino in Tulsa under the slogan “Xtreme Fight Night”. Reeder said the shows could draw between 1,000 and 2,000 viewers, but he’s not the type to be stage frightened.

“It’s actually not something I didn’t do as a kid,” Rieder said. “I grew up wrestling in front of a crowd, so I’m pretty used to it. I love this part of the fight. I love the crowd. I attract attention (expletive). I like it. I like to be the center of attention, everyone is looking at me. It’s probably weird to say, but this is my favorite part of the fight. and they may be the best fighters ever in the gym, but they perform in front of the crowd and these people, and they give up. Nervous, it will even undermine your cardio. This restlessness will even make you tired. Luckily, I understood that part. This is the hardest part, I think.”

His love of the limelight isn’t limited to the occasional XFN appearances that can be watched with a UFC Fight Pass subscription.

He wants to enjoy the hundreds of thousands of spectators provided by the sport’s biggest ad. He wants to be part of the UFC and that dream may come true sooner rather than later.

If Rieder continues to win in a dominant manner, a contract with the UFC is quite possible. It is operated by SuckerPunch Entertainment, one of the most respected and recognized athlete management companies in MMA.

However, besides winning, having an interesting personality and a lot of charisma goes a long way in landing such a lucrative deal. Ryder also has these qualities, which can be seen in any promotional material about his fights on social media.

“The most important thing in the world is winning,” Rieder said. “And I did a lot of that and I didn’t lose, so that’s good for me. I’m on the right track. fighting to stay out of the UFC if everything goes the way I plan. I just know that I have a good track record. a mark, anywhere from about seven to about 10-0, that puts you in a great spot.

“If everything goes well – as I think – I think I will be in the UFC by the end of 2022.”

Whatever the future holds for the young and determined fighter, he plans to establish himself firmly in Claremore.

While other fighters may move to bigger cities to train in world-famous MMA gyms, Reeder wants his name to be associated with his hometown.

For some of Reeder’s mixed martial arts colleagues, his wrestling experience carries a stigma of unworthiness. He is sometimes even referred to as “that wrestler from Claremore”.

However, Rieder hopes that one day his competitors will recognize him as “World Champion from Claremore”.

“People always tell me that I have to move,” Reeder said. “I need to go to the gym somewhere in New Mexico or the East Coast or California, but my big goal has always been to win a world title in Claremore, Oklahoma. trained in other places and one of the most important things that I learned from that is that these guys tell me: “Hey, whatever you do, you do the right thing, since you (expletive) are good, kid . They tell me to stick to my roots and not listen to people when they say I need to go to a super gym in a big city. They tell me, “Hey, stick to your roots, man. on a right way.’ So my biggest goal has always been to win the world title in Claremore, Oklahoma because everyone tells me I can’t… It’s just really funny because I know how well-rounded I am. I’m the best in the world. The world is on your feet. I’m the best in the world on the mat. I’m the best in the world in the clinch. I am the best in the world in every field.

“I’m bad at everything you can’t.”


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