MMA fighter John “Doomsday” Howard revealed on the Sherdog’s Beatdown Radio Show that he trained with infamous Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Howard made his debut in the UFC in 2009, but was released in 2011 and has an overall record of 20-7. Howard, who is from Boston, trained at the Wai Kru Mixed Martial Arts Center, which is the same facility that Tsarnaev worked out at.
Howard elaborates on why he occasionally sparred with the terrorist:
The reason why he trained at my gym was because he was a good boxer. He wanted a good sparring partner, and most gyms he went to, a lot of guys couldn’t hang with his boxing. He was beating guys up. The reason why he came to Wai Kru was because you had me as a UFC fighter and you had other good strikers there who weren’t scared to take a beating or give one. That’s how I knew him.”
Doomsday tells of a time that he was boxing Tsarnaev:
One day we was sparring and it got a little too physical. Me being an MMA fighter and him being a boxer, it was like a little rivalry thing and we were boxing and we kind of went kind of hard one time. I give him credit. He was a good boxer, but because of the power I possess, I could put anybody down, I believe. What happened was, he got a little cocky. He was touching me up. He was getting the best of me. We went at it, and I caught him with my left hook, my famous left hook, and broke his nose. When I broke his nose, he covered his face. His body was open, so I turned my angle and I hit him with a body shot — with my right hand, a body shot, and I dropped him. That was the end of the sparring match.”
Howard reveals his feelings for Tsarnaev:
I did feel kind of bad. I was like, ‘Man, I went too far.’ But ever since the tragedy happened, I don’t feel bad. The only thing I regret is I didn’t keep hitting him and choke him out and put him out of his misery.”
Since being released by the UFC Howard has gone 6-0 and is currently the middleweight champion for the CES MMA promotion in Rhode Island.