Don "The Dragon" Wilson '72
Basketball and Football
Don (born September 10, 1954) is an American champion kick boxer and actor. He is most famous for his acting roles in action-adventure films, including nine titles in Roger Corman's Bloodfist series. His first film was Corman's Killer Instinct.
He was perhaps the best known and most successful kickboxer of his era. He was one of the very few American kickboxers of the time (the 1980s) to travel to Thailand and compete in Muay Thai under local rules. These rules differed from the kickboxing rules prevalent in the West at the time, in that American kickboxing generally allowed only kickboxing above the waist, together with boxing techniques. Muay Thai, on the other hand, allowed then as now leg kicks, elbows and knees (delivered usually during a clinch).
Often Western kickboxing of the era was undertaken with leg guards, forbidden in Thailand where the fighters would have had a lifetime of conditioning their shins. As a result, most Westerners facing Thais were defeated by unfamiliarity with Thai leg-checking techniques and by the superior conditioning of the Thais. Seen in that context, Wilson's record of two defeats in Thailand on points is more credible, as is his decision to fight in Thailand in the first place.
Wilson won a total of 11 World Titles with several Sanctioning bodies that included the IKF, WKA, KICK, ISKA, STAR and the PKO. He won his IKF (www.IKFKickboxing.com) FCR Cruiserweight World Title on May 15, 1999 in Lowell, Massachusetts, USA, when he defeated Dick Kimber. (Lynn, Massachusetts, USA PRO: 23-3/21, AM: 25-0/25 5'9" 197 ) At the end of the 3rd round Wilson came alive and exploded with a flurry that eventually knocked Kimber to the floor motionless. Referee Dan Stell counted Kimber out on the floor, a count that went into the round break. Kimber never stood during the count.
Having never been challenged for his title, Wilson Voluntarily Retired it to move down to the Light Heavyweight Division where he eventually retired from fighting a few years later.
Wilson was also a fight commentator and interviewer in many of the early UFC events, beginning with UFC 7 in Buffalo. He stated several times that he would be willing to fight in the UFC himself if enough fans requested it, but it never happened. He went on to be a commentator for KOTC.
According to Inside Kung-Fu Presents Kickboxing Magazine (August 1992), Don Wilson's kickboxing record was listed as 69 wins, 5 losses, 2 draws, 46 knockout wins, and 6 kick-knockouts, and 3 no-contests. On page 64, Wilson's first match with Bill Knoblok in Orlando, Florida in December 1974 is listed as a 3 round no-contest. However, on page 52 in the same issue, Wilson said about his fight with Knoblok, "But Bill won the third round by a larger margin than I had won the first. So he won the bout." Today the official result of this fight was listed as a no-contest on Wilson's official fight record because when he decided to fight for PKA, Joe Corley felt the rule of the bout was quite different from those of PKA, Corley told Wilson to omit it. Wilson's kickboxing career spanned 4-decades; his first fight with Bill Knoblok in 1974 and his last fight, a 10th round knockout victory over Eddie Butcher on July 19, 2002 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Wilson's kickboxing record is listed as 72-5-2 (48 knockouts) with 3 no-contests.