Here in Colorado Springs and all over Colorado there has been a small well organized promotion building momentum over the course of what at this point amounts to nearly 10 years. ¬†Hosting shows, backing shows and renting out their equipment to other shows, they have established themselves as a consistent reliable promotion. ¬†This promotion has played an integral role in the growth of the sport here in Colorado and here in Colorado Springs has most certainly been the dominant influence. ¬†This promotion known as No Mercy Extreme is led by two of the hardest working people in the game, Natalie Mort and Gary Elkins. The power couple has patiently grown the once small promotion into an undeniable force in Colorado MMA and certainly one of the strongest promotions in this region of the United States.
We had the opportunity to talk to the duo this last weekend about their upcoming event, Annihilation 44 scheduled to take place Friday, March 22nd at the Colorado Springs City Auditorium.
Altitude: So Annihilation 44… How does it feel for your promotion to have had the success it has and what does the 44th show mean to you?
Natalie: It’s been a long hard road. Just perseverance and determination but hard to believe we are at 44.
Altitude: Now, No Mercy has played an influential role in many other events as well… At this point how many events do you believe you’ve contributed to?
Natalie: Honestly, I’ve lost count but around 200 in 4 different states.
Altitude: Out of those shows, is there one that stands out in your mind as the most memorable and if so why?
Natalie: I would have to say the all women’s event we put together. We spent the most money ever because we had to
bring in fighters from all over the United States. The fights were awesome and it was cool to have been the only promotion in Colorado to successfully pull off a 12 fight all female card.
Altitude: With such a high turnover of promoters somehow you guys have managed to grow. Is there anything or a combination of things that you’d accredit that to?
Natalie: Sure. We don’t try getting into pissing contests. We have put allot back into our company by way of equipment so that we can bring the people a better show without raising ticket prices. We stick by our word and stick in there so we have the confidence of the gyms and fighters.
Altitude: That’s something that people have always observed is a consistent ¬†improvement in the quality of your shows and has certainly been a strength. With that said, where do you believe most promoters go wrong and furthermore go wrong on a level that ultimately leads to their demise?
Natalie: They don’t put anything back in and they try going big right out of the gate. They also don’t realize how much work is involved in each event doing things on the scale that we do. Each event takes a month or two to put together and people get into the biz overlooking the actual effort it takes to be successful.
Altitude: Considering all the energy that goes into a No Mercy event.. What is your favorite part? The money, the fans, the fighters? What keeps you motivated to do the next show?
Natalie: Definitely not the money cause the for the amount of time we spend on our shows we could make allot more doing many other things. I believe it’s the people. The fans and the fighters keep us at it. It’s our big¬†dysfunctional¬†family!
Altitude: Haha! Now you guys have been going strong for nearly 10 years.. How do you see the sport evolving in the years to come?
Natalie: We have seen the sport grow so much in the time we’ve been in. The fighters are more skilled than ever having much more well rounded arsenals. Someone just coming in off the street thinking they’re tough isn’t close to enough with these guys. Right now is a crazy time because you have so many different promotions doing so many shows it’s a great time to be a fighter but I can see the walls crumbling ¬†as the fighter pool and the pocket books of the fans diminishes.
Altitude: How does No Mercy protect itself with so much competition?
Natalie: I believe by reputation. We’ve also cut back on the number of shows we’re doing until the smoke clears
Altitude: Now you guys haven’t done a show here in Colorado Springs since December. Seems like there’s allot of anticipation building up to Annihilation 44. What should those in attendance March 22nd expect?
Natalie: They should plan on having a great night! We’re very excited with how this card has come together.
Altitude: The fight card is packed with the richest talent in southern Colorado. ¬†What do you believe are the most anticipated matchups and are there any in particular you’re looking forward to?
Natalie: I know allot of people are anxious to see the Liles vs Riggs fight but I have several. Aragon vs. Viray, Heredia vs. Sullivan, even special K’s fight.
Altitude: Well I know you’re busy so we’ll wrap it up but any last words for the fan’s?
Natalie: Thank you! It’s going to be a great event for all to enjoy. It’s great to see the community support the fighters and the promotions at this level so the sport can continue to grow.
Altitude: Thank you for your time.
Natalie and Gary have truly built something exceptional. ¬†For those that have been around the sport for any period of time and had the pleasure of working with the team, know there are few if any that put the energy into their craft like No Mercy Extreme. ¬†Known for their commitment to quality and integrity upholding their word, it’s hard to believe No Mercy Extreme will do anything but continue to grow. ¬†So tell your friends, buy your tickets and come out to enjoy and awesome night of fights!
For ticket and event information contact www.coloradomma.com
or stop in to Altitude MMA