‘Mean’ Mike LaBree returns to ring for March 1 bout in Beloit, Wis.

February 26, 2014
Mean Mike Labree

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

Normally when I begin a phrase with “former Roscoe resident,” you most likely expect to see Danica Patrick’s name following. This story is about a different athlete who used to call Roscoe, Ill., home. This Saturday night (March 1), heavyweight kick-boxer and 53-year-old former Toughman competitor “Mean” Mike LaBree will be coming out of retirement once again to climb back into the ring for “The Rumble.”

The Eclipse Center (formerly the Beloit Mall) in Beloit, Wis., will host “The Rumble.” LaBree will face Rick McGraw for the Super Heavyweight Championship. McGraw is a 270-pound, 6-foot-8-inch Illinois prison guard.

LaBree said: “For both of us, this is not about pounding someone’s head in. It’s a great lifestyle, being in top mental and physical shape for everything life has to offer.”

LaBree has been training three hours a day in preparation for this fight and to stay in peak physical condition.

He continued: “Come March 1, 2014, you will witness my endurance, physical condition and spirit. You will see where I am coming from with my quest. This is a real dream. My dream takes place in the gym, kickboxing, running, and lots of hard work. Age is only a number in your head. I am a much faster, stronger and smarter fighter than ever. Training a little different than I did in the younger years. Now focusing on power, hill running, heavy bag work, lots of good food, lots of good rest, and living in the north woods.”

The fight is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tickets are available online at localmmatickets.com or by calling Todd Green at (815) 289-3295.

Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at Dougster61@aol.com.

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