Tyler Goodjohn – Getting back to the bare bones…& knuckles.
What happens when the lights fade, the fire starts to dwindle, and the love has left town? These are the difficult questions popular crowd favourite Tyler Goodjohn found himself faced with. An ever-present name amongst the blood & guts enthusiasts, Goodjohn found himself with a new family and a bank statement that was taking more hits than Antonio Margarito. He needed a new direction and he needed it fast. One fight in 18 months proved to be the bitter sweet turning point.
Most fighters outside of the upper echelon are only paid if they fight (normally this is via a % of tickets they are required to sell, that’s another topic for another time), they receive no financial income to train. As you can imagine this will put a great strain on a budding fighters finances, especially if they’re not prolific ticket sellers and are unable to fight regularly. Goodjohn found himself with a lot of time on his hands during this hiatus from the professional prize ring and put it to situation changing use. Now the proud owner of his own gym, the thriving El Warriors Workshop, he is earning a living, providing for his family and still involved in the pugilistic art he holds so dear. With his financial affairs back in order, it was time to address another issue; the competitive itch. Goodjohn still had the hunger to compete and test himself but no longer had the love or hunger for the professional boxing game. He has now turned his sights to another battleground, BKB (bare knuckle boxing). He will make his debut in the new and exciting format on Saturday June 9th. It was a pleasure to sit down and catch up with a former sparring partner and friend and discuss the next chapter.
Me: Ok Tyler, obviously I know you very well but for my readers that may not be as familiar please gives us a quick introduction.
Tyler: My name is Tyler Goodjohn, I am 27 years old and I am from Cambridgeshire. I had 69 amateur fights, winning 46 of them and becoming Junior ABA Champion. As a professional I had 18 fights, won 13 and was a former English Champion. I’ve been in some seriously tough fights, right from the beginning. I boxed Danny Connor in only my 6th fight, we went on to fight each other 3 time in total. I fought former British Champion Tyrone Nurse in my 11th fight and then won the English in my 13th in front of a packed O2 arena. I’ve had some great fights and great nights but eventually the struggle to make the 10st weight limit (where I had most of my success) took its toll on me. In the end I was never able to get another crack at the big shows. For one reason or another I wasn’t attractive to promoters.
Me: So as my readers can see, you’re someone who knows the game of boxing. When did you start boxing & why?
Tyler: I started boxing at age 10 to lose weight, I was quite a chunky kid…not much has changed. Like most kids I was really into football, but I struggled to get into the team because of my weight so my parents took me to Haddenham ABC to learn how to box and lose some weight.
Me: Your story, in terms of the reason why you started boxing is very similar to mine. How and why did you find yourself turning professional?
Tyler: I turned professional because I didn’t have anywhere else to go in the amateur game. I had got to a national final and then the following year I became national Junior ABA Champion, but I was constantly being overlooked by the England boxing selection team. It was basically stay amateur, give up boxing completely or try my luck in the professional ranks. I had previously been potted by Tony Sims in London and had been offered to turn professional. In hindsight 18/19 was far too young for me to turn professional but I didn’t feel I had many other choices at that time.
Me: You mentioned that in hindsight maybe you turned pro too soon. Are there any other things you wish you would have known before your professional career?
Tyler: Absolutely! Professional Boxing is a business. I heard this so much before I turned pro, but I chose to ignore it. Again, I put this down to being young and probably naïve. I wish I understood that promoters are only concerned with making money out of you, there’s no loyalty or care in this game. Once you have been beaten and you’re of no financial use anymore you’re tossed on the scrap heap. It’s the nature of the beast but it still makes it a very hard pill to swallow.
Me: I for one am very interested in seeing you compete in BKB, I feel it suits your style down to a tee. Do you feel there will be other boxers interested and do you feel you may see some other boxers making the switch?
Tyler: Thanks mate. Yeah, I do believe more and more professional boxers will start making the switch over to BKB. Without name dropping, most professional boxers I speak to are tired of the game. They’re fed up of the way its run, so I can see this transition becoming more common.
Me: Been great to catch up with you bro. Lastly, tell the readers when the fight is, where its going to be and how we can get tickets?
Tyler: Really enjoyed catching up, thank you for doing this piece on me. I really appreciate the support and interest. My BKB debut is on Saturday June 9th at the Indigo O2, back at my old hunting ground. People can contact me directly for tickets, but the event is close to being a sell-out. The interest and demand has been out of this world.
I am looking forward to following Tyler’s next chapter. One thing is for sure; there’s probably going to be blood and its probably going to be exciting