You’ve seen the clips, perhaps have competed on the raised stage when it came to a town or city near you… Fight2Win has been one of the hottest promotions in the sport for a while, giving local competitors opportunities to compete under the limelight on the same stages as their heroes.
A few weeks back the organization brought aboard Ohio based event promoter Dave Bever. Bever, a purple belt training out of Grove City near Columbus, runs his own show: Twisted Church.
A pastor and long time martial arts aficionado, Dave has a bombastic personality. Hes loud, sometimes brash, but has proven time and again that hes a capable promoter who puts on a good show, so to see him join forces with The Biggest Party in Grappling is great.
I had an opportunity to chat with Dave about his newfound role with F2W as well as his journey to get to this point.
“I’m 45, and started training almost 7 years ago. I trained for 3 months and went to Indianapolis for a tournament! I lost every match and fell in love with competitive Jiu-Jitsu. I knew that day that THIS is what I was going to do. Been training and competing ever since. My white and Blue belt days I would compete 2-3 times a month.
Two years ago, I felt like I could learn from the good and bad of others, add my own spin, and created Twisted Church to contribute more options, and opportunities for grapplers in the Midwest and beyond. My goal was to build and become another National MAJOR Hub for high level Jiu Jitsu here in the midwest! Instead of it always being California, Las Vegas, Texas…….. The size of my shows and the athletes on them mean that you have to include us now as a major show to be on.”
Dave’s choice to dive in at F2W was a result of his own experience on the stage
“I was honored to fight on F2W, and let’s face it, they have been the OG and still today in my opinion are the greatest traveling Super Fight show in the nation. I can’t believe that I actually get to work with Seth and the team now! I am humbled, honored, and will contribute to making it the best I can.
I’ll be doing it all! Help match make, drive the truck, referee, set up, load, unload, announce, etc…. Whatever, and wherever I’m needed each night, per city!”
Though Dave is fully committed to his work with Fight2Win he still has plans for his Twisted Church promotion
“I am not done yet. I am blessed to work with F2W, referee for ADCC, and run Twisted Church. The biggest show in the world, The biggest show in the nation, and the fastest growing show in the Midwest/Ohio.
Twisted Church is an outward expression of who I am as a person. I am bold about my faith, but NOT pushy! I have had ever color, creed, race, religion, and orientation compete on my shows, they all have been treated with value, love, and respect. That’s what my faith requires, and so do I. I’m always down to share, answer questions, pray with people… however, it’s just part of my core values and who I am as a man. It’s not some bait and switch BS scheme like so many religious people do. I am what I am, and what you see, is what you get. So, for me it’s ‘Faith and Violence’”
As for Dave’s personal journey, like his journey as a promoter he is just getting started
“Jiu Jitsu saved my life almost 7 years ago from one of the darkest place I’ve been in my life. So, it’s given me so much that I’m giving it to others.
I train 4-6 times a week as a practitioner. When I have suffered injuries I’m still in the gym day and night with a notepad and pen. I watch, read, and study Jiu Jitsu daily. Study every Ruleset, and watch matches to refine my eyes for various scenarios etc… I promote through the process of an athlete, and make it about the art, the athletes, and growing this sport. I have trained sometimes 2-3 times a day between classes, taking privates, and also helping coach kids and teens. I LOVE this game, and this is now my life.”
Moving forward Dave has his goals set high
“Moving forward personally, I want to see more major shows and athletes in the midwest featured on major outlets. I personally want to continue working and showing myself worthy of being on the mats at the 2024 ADCC Worlds. Being able to be selected as a Referee or Judge for that event in T-Mobile Arena would be one of my own personal Jiu Jitsu goals met. To be trusted with the assignment on the biggest stage in the world would speak volumes to me. I love this game, and want to be in the center of all its growth and greatness.
My hope is to be a positive, proactive member of the F2W team, and allow the natural and organic nature of creativity, and application take place. Seth is very passionate, creative, and strives for perfection. That kind of environment is a place I can thrive. My greatest goal is to contribute to the greater good for the athletes, fans, and growth of the game.”
For anyone who wants to follow in Dave’s footsteps or cut their own path Dave has some advice, drawing from his own experiences
“I think overall, I have seen people be taken advantage of in the past. People get treated like they’re just a quick dollar for tournament organizers, and sometimes shows. That’s why a lot start and fail. My goal has been to be affordable, professional, efficient, and polite! Always treat people well! It’s an honor to have people compete on your shows, and build the Jiu Jitsu community. I also do not COMPETE with other brands. I want to COMPLETE with others. I celebrate them, share their events, brag about them, and try to help them succeed. Most people reciprocate that.
I keep my mind on the things I can control. I don’t worry about who likes me, or doesn’t. I ignore negative criticism, and I intentionally seek advice and help from those further down the road from me. I keep my eyes locked on where I’m going, and take all I’ve learned along the way a ls valuable knowledge and lessons. I try to internalize passion and enthusiasm. Some days it’s a simple choice. Today, I get to do this.. Not ‘I have to do this’
I’m just absolutely humbled, grateful, and honored to be able to work with…. the in my opinion two of the most dynamic people and brands in Jiu Jitsu. Mo and the ADCC staff, and Seth and the F2W staff. I plan to contribute to the greater good of EVERYONE involved as this sport continues to grow.”
We look forward to seeing how Dave improves Fight2Win moving forward.