Knife or Death

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It started with a demonstration at a local Tae Kwon Do tournament in May of 2018. A video of the demonstration was shared online to promote the school.

Then a simple question followed:

Jeremy Bientema has been building custom throwing knives and other blades under the company name BullsEye Blades since 2014. Already well-known in the throwing knife circuit with his blades being in use by some of the top throwers in the industry. Jeremy had a blade design and was ready to rise up and meet the challenge. But there was one problem.

Forged in Fire: Knife or Death hadn't decided to go international and Jeremy is located in Canada. He saw an opportunity to send in a stand-in to represent his sword and there in his feed was a video of some sword-wielding proficiency. He reached out to Kenneth Knight and proposed the idea that Jeremy's blade and Ken's skill just might be able to make it through this challenge and rise to the top. But where there's one problem, sometimes there's more.

An injury during his training had left Ken with a shoulder injury and a long road to recovery. The physical demand of the challenges in the course would be far too much for Ken's shoulder. In fact, he had already decided that the demonstration they put on was the last performance he'd be able to put on for a while.

Enter another simple question. "Can I send a student?"

Joel Rice has been training with Ken and the Casper Dojo since 2012. Prior to that, he trained with Master Jim Sams of the Sajido Academy in Atlanta Georgia. Joel was also a part of the demonstration done at the tournament along with Angie Bailly. Jeremy agreed to let Joel stand in for Ken and the process of getting everything approved to start the audition process began. It wasn't long (Ken's note: yes it was, the wait was grueling!) before Joel had made it through all the stages of the audition and selected to be on the show! Queue an 80's style montage of training everything from cardio, strength, power, accuracy and lots of cut tests. (We wish we would have filmed more of the training sessions but we were, well, training!)

Fast forward to August of 2018 and Joel was on his way to Atlanta to compete on the season 2 circuit of Forged in Fire: Knife or Death!

It was a tough challenge but with a mighty "Osu!" (In difficult times, persevere) Joel pushed through and returned triumphant!

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