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LiverKick.com Heavyweight Rankings: January 2012

  • Published in Rankings

Welcome back to the LiverKick.com rankings. These rankings are an attempt to break down the top 10 fighters in three different weight classes - Heavyweight, for fighters above the 85kg limit, Middleweight, for fighters at the 70-72.5kg limit, and Light Heavyweight, for fighters at the 77-84kg limit. Our rankings are based on in-ring accomplishments and recent wins and loses. We hope they reflect where these fighters currently stand, although we recognize that all rankings are inherently subjective.

Heavyweight

1. Semmy Schilt
2. Badr Hari
3. Peter Aerts
4. Gokhan Saki
5. Daniel Ghita
6. Rico Verhoeven
7. Tyrone Spong
8. Hesdy Gerges
9. Errol Zimmerman
10. Sergei Laschenko

Sem SchiltHeavyweight - January 2012

Heavyweight actually saw a lot of movement this time around, which after a rather static year in 2011 was refreshing to see. While it does feel a bit odd to still include Semmy Schilt as #1 in the division due to A) not winning the 2010 World Grand Prix and B) he did not fight in 2011 at all, he is still the measuring stick for success within the division. It is safe to say that as long as Alistair Overeem, the 2010 World Grand Prix winner, is under a contract to the UFC, he will not be kickboxing anytime soon. Schilt still plans on being active in 2012 and will without a doubt be involved in whatever FIKA organizes. Badr Hari holds strong at #2 for his achievements in past years, for fighting in 2011 and having a high profile fight scheduled for this month. Peter Aerts holds strong at #3 after an amazing performance in the 2010 K-1 World Grand Prix and remaining somewhat active in 2011 having at least one fight against a lesser opponent. Aerts has remained in fighting shape and has decided it is still not time to retire. While it is rough that he lost all of 2011, 2012 will be a different year.

 

Gokhan Saki had a pretty good 2011, winning the Glory World Series with two wins, one over Wendell Roche and another over Brice Guidon. Not top competition within the division, but tough fighters. Rumors of him leaving Kickboxing seem to not be true as there are rumors of him fighting in June for It's Showtime, and of course, he fights #2 Badr Hari in a few weeks. From here is where the big shifting goes on. Daniel Ghita shifts up one position not out of defeating someone above him, but more because of the fall of Hesdy Gerges to Rico Verhoeven. Rico makes his apprehensive debut in the top ten at #6, with the question of will he be able to get another big win or will he fall back into obscurity? Hesdy, on the other hand, will rematch against Daniel Ghita with Ghita getting a chance at redemption. Tyrone Spong stays at #7 and looks to not be "retiring" from Kickboxing, either.

Errol Zimmerman makes his heroic return to the top ten after having a redemption year of redemption years in 2011. Zimmerman went 6-0 for the year, demolishing some lesser competition while moving back up the ladder before running through the SuperKombat: Fight Club one night tournament at the end of the year to cement his spot at the top. Another product of a SuperKombat tournament moving up in the world is Sergei Laschenko, making his debut in the LiverKick Top 10. He had a very strong 2011 in SuperKombat before winning their World Grand Prix, putting fringe-top ten fighter Ismael Londt to sleep in the first round to secure his spot in the sun.

With every rise must come a fall, and the retirement and Boxing debut of Kyotaro has forced our hand to remove him. Many other fighters had talked about leaving Kickboxing behind, but Kyotaro vacated his K-1 Heavyweight Championship and severed his ties with FEG, which in Japan is not a great idea if you want to continue moving forward. Seeing as though no one outside of FEG has booked Kyotaro for a fight in ages, it is fair to say he might be done. Ewerton Teixeira is in a similar situation, to where K-1 was using him to add international flavor. With FEG out of the K-1 picture, potentially, and him being incredibly inactive, it is safe to say that Teixeira is done for the time being. Jerome Le Banner has fallen off of the top ten as his Le Banner Tour is seemingly him against smaller men, not actual Heavyweights, who are unranked. This, as well as his commitments to Antonio Inoki's IGF professional wrestling means for the time being, until he faces another top 10 fighters, JLB is out of the picture.

 

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K-1 Issues a Press Release: Badr Hari is Back

  • Published in K-1

We could have already told you this, but everything is official now; Badr Hari is returning to K-1. K-1 Global issued a press release via BusinessWire this morning that Badr Hari is training with Naazim Richardson for Boxing, yes, but that K-1 made him an offer that he could not refuse. Badr will continue pushing forward in his Boxing career, as he believes he'll be a world champion within three years, but he wants to have one more shot at the K-1 World Grand Prix.

Badr Hari's first fight under the K-1 Global banner is slated to be on May 27th, the press release states, in a qualifying bout which will be announced shortly. They plan on Badr fighting for them in October in the Final 16 and hopefully in December in New York for the Final 8. [source]

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K-1 Announces Full May 27th Fight Card, Badr Hari vs. Anderson Silva

  • Published in K-1

K-1 Rising

It was only a matter of time before K-1 finalized their May 27th fight card, and now they've done just that. On top of the MAX line-up which was announced earlier on Friday, additional Superfights were announced late Friday evening via press release. A big question is the inclusion of Mosab Amrani vs. Zeben Diaz and how both men seem like a better fit than a fighter like Gago Drago who has fallen on tough times of late and might not belong in the K-1 World MAX Grand Prix. The big fights are at Heavyweight and are worth marveling at. The additional fights are as follows:

Superfight: Mosab Amrani vs. Zeben Diaz

Heavyweight: Badr Hari vs. Anderson "Braddock" Silva

Heavyweight: Mirko Cro Cop vs. Loren Javier Jorge

Heavyweight: Daniel Ghita vs. Paul Slowinski

Heavyweight: Rico Verhoeven vs. Sergei Laschenko

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Badr Hari Retires From Kickboxing to Begin Boxing Career

  • Published in K-1

Not many events in the kickboxing world can leave you speechless, but the retirement of one of Heavyweight Kickboxing's biggest stars in the past ten years will do just that. The big secret announcement from It's Showtime was originally scheduled for Friday but was then pushed back to today. In the meantime, word got out that Badr Hari would take on Gokhan Saki on January 28th for It's Showtime. To many, this was the big announcement that It's Showtime was trying to keep under wraps, but it would turn out to be much bigger.

Badr Hari has spoken about his desire to enter the world of Boxing for a long time now, much more seriously over the past year. This includes talk of possible Olympic Boxing that seemed to die off and talking with Michael Schiavello in a Voice Versus episode about possibly leaving kickboxing for boxing. Add in the steady decline of K-1 over the past few years and Badr Hari's legal troubles and kickboxing became less and less his passion.

Tonight It's Showtime sent around a press release announcing Badr Hari's retirement from kickboxing on January 28th against his hand-selected opponent of Gokhan Saki. The irony is, of course, that Gokhan Saki might do exactly the same thing next year and pass on Kickboxing to enter into the Boxing or MMA world. It's Showtime also casts some serious doubt onto the possibility of the K-1 World Grand Prix;

If K-1 will host a World Grand Prix this year, Badr will also participate to that. The Grand Prix Final is scheduled for December 10 in China. If this World Grand Prix will take place, depends if K-1 will be able to pay its debts to IT’S SHOWTIME and others. If not, the fight on January 28 will be Badr’s only remaining fight as a kickboxer.

This is huge, if not crushing news to kickboxing fans around the world and good news for Boxing.

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LiverKick Podcast - Vol. 3

  • Published in LK Podcast

After a bit of a break for the holidays and other assorted nonsense the LiverKick Podcast makes it's [mildly] glorious return. As always, Rian Scalia (@rianscalia) joins myself (@LiverKickdotcom / @LocustStar) as we discuss the latest happenings in the world of Kickboxing. We take a look at some of the huge announcements from Golden Glory, including a card announcement for March 23rd as well as them announcing three huge tournaments and the whole saga of them and the K-1 name. Then we move on to look at the Yokkao Extreme card that went down yesterday before bringing it all back to It's Showtime which goes down next week.

Fight the good fight and listen to the LiverKick Podcast. Intro and outtro music provided by Night Terrain (@nightterrain).

{music}podcast{/music}

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Badr Hari Returns to the Ring on November 9th Against Alexey Ignashov

  • Published in Kickboxing

Badr

The rumor over the past week or so was that Badr Hari would be back in the ring for the LEGEND promotion, based out of Russia, but let's be honest with ourselves here, it felt like a longshot at best. Badr Hari is due in court in October for his trial which will decide his fate for the brutal beating of Koen Everink at the Amsterdam ArenA last year. So when rumors of him participating in the next LEGEND event, which was scheduled for October 31st, started sprouting it up it seemed that they were overly confident in his court case.

That confidence has not wavered, though, as it looks like these rumors were true. According to De Telegraaf in the Netherlands, Badr Hari is set to fight for LEGEND on November 9th against none other than Alexey Ignashov. One would have to think that this could fall through if Badr is found guilty, but maybe not, who knows? Golden Glory founder Ron Nyqvist escaped from prison in July when he was given a "break" from prison (yes, a break from prison!) and was apprehended this last week, so it feels like anything is possible with how international judicial systems work.

The last time that Badr Hari was in the ring was in May at LEGEND against Zabit Samedov, with Samedov stopping Hari and shocking the world.

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Photo of the Day: Badr Hari Preparing for War

  • Published in Kickboxing

We just passed the halfway point of March, which means that the return of Badr Hari is just under two months away. He is preparing vigorously for the challenge of French Muay Thai fighter Tony Gregory (yes, this is correct, it is how It's Showtime, K-1 and his website list him). It isn't that anyone is giving Gregory a lot of a chance as much as we all have high hopes for Badr Hari's first fight in a year.

Mike's Gym on Facebook just posted an album of photos of the Bad Boy himself training with newer Mike's Gym recruit, Sergei Laschenko. [source]

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Badr Hari is Being Held in Solitary Confinement, But Can Watch Television Now

  • Published in K-1

BadrWe reported earlier today that Badr Hari has confessed to his part in the beating of multimillionaire businessman Koen Everink at the "Sensation" festival at Amsterdam ArenA a few weeks ago. The beating left Everink in dire straits, with his face and ankle badly damaged, and with many pointing the finger at Badr Hari while he was on vacation with his new girlfriend, Estelle Cruijff, former wife of Ruud Gullit. It appears that Badr is being held in prison, and that it might be a while before he sees the light of day.

As of Thursday, Badr Hari's solitary confinement will still stand, but he will be allowed to watch television and read the newspaper -- two luxuries which were out of his reach up until now. Hari is still being kept away from other prisoners and is unable to interact with anyone from the outside world. It is still unknown when he will be formally charged and sentenced. [source]

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Image of the Day: Badr Hari Back in Training

  • Published in Kickboxing

Images say a thousand words, and in that case I'm going to post an image instead of a thousand words. Badr Hari was filming for a Dutch sports program which will air on Monday today in Mike's Gym, alongside Mike Passenier and Melvin Manhoef. Of course, there is a whole album full of awesome stuff, so get at it. [source]

Badr Hari is Back

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