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K-1 Japan Announces K-1's Return to Saitama Super Arena in 2018

To say that kickboxing in Japan suffered a severe blow when FEG's K-1 went bankrupt would be an understatement. While the sport was already struggling in Japan from rounds of bad press, the dissolution of K-1 was effectively the end of kickboxing as we all came to know and love it. 

Since 2014 K-1 Japan -- under agreement with K-1 Global -- has been putting on some of the best kickboxing shows on the planet, highlighting lighter weight classes with fighters primarily from Japan, but also talent from all over the world. In those years they've made the best out of a bad situation and have been able to book stars like the Urabe brothers, HIROYA and Masaaki Noiri while building up new stars like TAKERU, Minoru Kimura and Kaew. At a press conference today in Saitama, K-1 gathered 56 of K-1's best fighters for an announcement that on March 21st, 2018 K-1 will return to the Saitama Super Arena.

The event, which will be held in the arena where many historic K-1 events took place, will be a triumphant return home for the sport of kickboxing and the K-1 brand in Japan. They believe that they will set the building up for 18,000 fans, although it should be noted that Saitama Super Arena can be configured to hold well over 20,000 fans. The organization wants the March 2018 event to serve as their big, yearly event much like the prior K-1 World Grand Prix for heavyweights in December or the K-1 World MAX tournaments became mainstays in both July and October. They will hold smaller events in Saitama Super Arena as well, but the March event will be the big one.

It's clearly too far away to predict who will be fighting, especially with K-1 Japan holding a ton of events this year, but it's safe to assume that they'll be putting their best foot forward on March 21st, 2018. In addition, K-1 Japan, KRUSH and Khaos will all be merged under the name "K-1 Japan Group" while keeping their individual show names moving forward, but talent-sharing will be across the board.

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Early Fight Card For K-1 Japan Super Bantamweight World Grand Prix

K-1 Japan returns on April 22nd with the K-1 Japan Bantamweight World Grand Prix. The tournament brackets are set for the 55kg tournament, featuring recognizable names as well as a host of very interesting super fights. Takeru takes on Victor Saravia, Hiroya takes on Tetsuya Yamato and the main event is a Super Lightweight title fight between Kaew and Hideaki Yamazaki.

Credit to Rictor from Kakutougi.

55kg World Grand Prix Tournament

QuarterFinal #1

Ishida Keisuke VS Charles Bongiovanni

QuarterFinal #2

Takei Yoshiki VS Antonio Orden

QuarterFinal #3

Terado Nobuchika VS Jamie Whelan

QuarterFinal #4

Kubo Kenji VS Leung Pakyu

Tournament Reserve Fight

Izawa Namito VS Suzuki Yuya

SuperFights

Takeru VS Victor Saravia

Hiroya VS Yamato Tetsuya

Super Lightweight Title Fight

Kaew Weerasakreck VS Yamazaki Hideaki

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K-1 Crowns a New -85kg Champion in Thrilling Tournament Final

The K-1 World Grand Prix Europe marched into Bosnia this weekend with their -85kg tournament. While the names weren't quite on the same level as the -95kg tournament from last month, the action delivered in spades with a lot of young fighters looking to make a name for themselves in the tournament. The final was a crazy slugfest between Igor Emkic from Bosnia and Russian Timur Aylayrov. Timur was applying pressure and dropping Emkic with body blows and you could almost hear the air get sucked out of the crowd who was looking for a local hero to win the tournament.

Tournament Final: Timur Aylayrov (R3 - TKO) Igor Emkic 

Tournament Semi-Final: Timur Aylayrov (R3 - Dec) Agron Preteni 

Tournament Semi-Final: Igor Emkick (R3 - Dec) David Radeff 

Tournament Quarterfinal: Timur Aylayrov (R? - TKO) Vasil Ducar 

Tournament Quarterfinal: Agron Preteni (R3 - Dec) Imanol Rodriguez 

Tournament Quarterfinal: Igor Emkic (R3 - Dec) Guiseppe De Domenico 

Tournament Quarterfinal: David Radeff (R3 - Dec) Nikola Noveski 

Tournament Reserve Fight: Mesud Selimovic (R1 - KO) Petar Jaman 

Haris Brko (R3 - Dec) Rafal Gorka 

Giannis Skordilis (R3 - Dec) Maycon Coller 

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Brackets Released For K-1 World Grand Prix Europe -85kg Tournament

After the success of the K-1 World Grand Prix Euro -95kg tournament K-1 Global is looking to take full advantage of this momentum by announcing their next tournament, the K-1 World Grand Prix Euro -85kg tournament. It features a mix of recognizable names as well as hot prospect newcomers and will look to provide the same kind of entertainment that we've come to know and want from the K-1 name. 

Here's the card thus far:

World Grand Prix Euro -85kg Tournament

David Radeff (France) vs. Nikola Noveski (Serbia)

Igor Emkic (BiH) vs. Guiseppe de Domenico (Italy)

Agron Preteni (Croatia) vs. Radoslaw Packuski (Poland)

Timu Aylyarov (Russia) vs. Vasil Ducar (Czech Republic)

Super Fights

Mesud Selimovic (BiH) vs. Imanol Rodriguez (Spain)

Giannis Skordilis (Greece) vs. Maycon Oller (Brazil)

Broslav Vujanovic (BiH) vs. Aundre Groce (England)

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K-1 World GP in Japan: Featherweight Championship Tournament Results

K-1 crowned a Featherweight Champion in Japan last night and it was -- of course -- the ultra-violent Takeru who took the crown. Here are the quick results from the fights.

11.03.2016

Yoyogi National Gymnasium

Tokyo Japan

Live on AbemaTV (fight channel) 16:00 JP / 12AM PST / 3AM EST

~Prelims~

Yuki Egawa def Ryota (Punches, left to liver then head)

Ryuya Mineyama def Yuto Shinohara DEC (Unanimous)

Rukiya def Hisaki Hashimoto DEC (Unanimous)

~Opening Ceromony~

~K-1 Featherweight Championship Grand Prix~

reserve bout : Hirotaka Asahisa def Yuta Otaki DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 World GP Featherweight Quarter Final #1 : Ozawa Kaito def Josh Tonna KO 1R (Flying knee to the body)

K-1 World GP Featherweight Quarter Final #2 : Elias Mahmoudi def Ryuma Tobe DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 World GP Featherweight Quarter Final #3 : Yun Qi def Shota Kanbe KO 3R ( Two knockdowns, punches & flying knee )

K-1 World GP Featherweight Quarter Final #4 : Takeru def Jamie Whelan DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 Koshien 2016 -55kg Final : Taito Gunji def Ryuya Tsubakihara DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 Koshien 2016 -60kg Final : Yuma Saikyo def Takumi Yokoyama DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 Koshien 2016 -65kg Final : Kensei Kondo def Umi Honma DEC (Unanimous)

~intermission~

K-1 World GP Featherweight Semifinal #1 Kaito Ozawa def Elias Mohmoudi DEC (Unanimous)

K-1 World GP Featherweight Semifinal #2 Takeru def Yun Qi KO 2R (Punches)

Yasuomi Soda def Fawad Seddiqi DEC (Unanimous)

Yuta Kubo def Keita Makihira DEC (Unanimous)

Sanny Dahlbeck def Yashuhiro Kido KO 2R (Punches and Knee)

K-1 World GP Featherweight GP Championship Final Takeru def Kaito Ozawa Dec (Unanimous, Takeru dominated this rematch from the beginning and he dropped Kaito twice with flurries near the end of round one. Takeru didn't fight with caution as both slugged it out until the end)

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K-1 World Grand Prix Euro -95kg Results: Roman Kryklia Takes The Crown

K-1 Global returned to Europe on October 27th with the K-1 World Grand Prix -95kg Euro tournament, where a 95kg champion was crowned in a classic, one-night, eight-man tournament. The winner of that tournament was the ever-exciting Roman Kryklia. Kryklia mowed through the competition with three KOs before the night was through, taking home the championship. His knees are nothing short of beautiful and brutal.

K-1 Euro World Grand Prix -95kg

Final: Roman Kryklia (R2 - KO) Fabio Kwasi 

Semi: Fabio Kwasi (R3 - Dec) Rade Opačić 

Semi: Roman Kryklia (R3 - KO) Atha Kasapis 

Quarterfinal: Rade Opačić (R3 - Dec) Emmanuel Payet 

Quarterfinal: Fabio Kwasi (R3 - Dec) Mladen Kujundžić 

Quarterfinal: Atha Kasapis (R3 - TKO) Aundre Groce 

Quarterfinal: Roman Kryklia (R1 - KO) Bahrudin Mahmić 

Reserve: Vasil Ducar (R3 - Dec) Panagiotis Theodosiadis 

Marina Spasić (R3 - Dec) Merima Bašić 

Sayfullah Hambahadov (R3 - Dec) Marko Adamović 

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Fight Card for K-1 World Grand Prix Europe -95kg

After the runaway success that K-1 Japan has had, K-1 Global is looking to bring that level of excitement and interest to K-1 in Europe with their K-1 World Grand Prix Euro -95kg tournament. K-1's Ned Kuruc had discussed the idea of moving away from the eight-man tournaments in the past, but K-1 has done an about-face in seeing the high demand for these tournaments and the excitement that they can create. 

The idea behind this tournament is to blend together some well-known -95kg fighters along with some lesser known, younger talents to create a new, thriving division. K-1 Japan has been focused on the smaller weights and K-1 Europe is going to focus on the heavier weights. 

Of course, this is not without controversy. K-1 ran a World Grand Prix event in Croatia -- the one that Cro Cop won -- in cooperation with Cro Cop's former manager and Final Fight promoter Orsat Zovko. Orsat has spoken about the poor relationship with K-1 and how there were financial disagreements in the past, but now the claims have resurfaced, namely from the Zovko-affiliated FightSite, which has published a number of pieces now of fighters claiming to still be owed money from the 2013 event. This is not the first that we've heard of this, but it has been a while since this has been discussed. K-1 Global has not replied to the claims, but were aware of them. 

Regardless of past, broken business relationships, there are high hopes for K-1's new start in Europe with the -95kg tournament. Well known fighters like Mladen Kujundzic, Fabio Kwasi, Emmanuel Payet and Igor Bugaenko are involved in the tournament alongside up-and-comers. 

K-1 World Grand Prix Euro -95kg Tournament

Igor Bugaenko (Belarus) vs. Tomasz Sarara (Poland)

Atha Kasapis (Germany) vs. Aundre Groce (England)

Fabio Kwasi (Holland) vs. Mladen Kujundzic (Croatia)

Rade Opacic (Serbia) vs. Emmanuel Payet (France)

Reserve Fight

Vasil Ducar (Czech Republic) vs. Bahrudin Mahmic (Bosnia and Herzegovina)

Super Fights

60kg Women - Marina Spasic (Serbia) vs. Merima Basic (Bosnia and Herzegovina)

71kg Men - Marko Adamovic (Serbia) vs. Sayfullah Hambahadov (Russia)

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K-1 WGP in Japan 2016 - 60kgs World Tournament Results

So the K-1 60kgs tournament took place this morning in Tokyo, Japan. The co-main event was supposed to feature Kaew Weerasakreck against the winner of the 2016 65kgs tournament Hideaki Yamazaki but Kaew`s teammate Gon`Napar fought instead and what a fight it was. Here are all the results thanks to Mr. Jordan Booth.

Results

60kgs Tournament Final - Koya Urabe Def Taiga KO 1ST RND (Punches, 3 Knockdowns) Koya looked fantastic tonight, really utilized that great boxing of his.

65kgs Superfight - Gon'Napar Weerasakreck Def Hideaki Yamazaki Unanimous Dec (28-26,28-26,28-26) Both were dropped in the first round from punches. Yamazaki looked good in the first but at some point in the second ate few to many leg kicks and was clearly on sore legs the rest of the fight. He was barely walking after the match. good fight.

Mokoto Uehara Def Koichi Pettas Unanimous Dec (30-28,29-28,29-28)

Kenta Hayashi Def Yuji "kyoken" Takeuchi KO 1ST RND (Punches, 3 Knockdowns)

60kgs Semi 1 - Koya Urabe Def Paulo Tebar KO 2ND RND (Punches, 2 Knockdowns) 

60kgs Semi 2 - Taiga Def Hirotaka Urabe Unanimous Dec (30-27,30-27,30-26)

Makoto Kozu forest vs Hong Chin'yao KO 3RD RND 

Morii Kokai Def Michitaka Uchida Majority Dec (29-28,29-29,29-28)

Kuwata Yuta Def Yu Nomura KO 3rd RND

60kgs Quarterfinal - Kosuke Komiyama Def Paulo Tebar Unanimous Dec (30-28,29-28,30-28) (Komiyama inured so Tebar advanced)

60kgs Quarterfinal - Koya Urabe Def Karim Bennoui Unanimous Dec (30-27,30-27,30-27)

60kgs Quarterfinal - Hirotaka Urabe Def Johannes Wolf Unanimous Dec (29-28,29-28,29-28)

60kgs Quarterfinal - Taiga Def Javier Hernandez TKO 2ND RND (Downed with Liver kick, survived the round then left the ring)

Koji Def Toshi Unanimous Dec (30-29,30-29,30-29)

Masanobu Goshu Def Dynamite Yuta Takahashi Majority Dec (30-29,29-29,30-28)

K-Jee Def Yoshinari KO 2RND (Punches, 3KD)

Kento Ito vs Ryusei Asizawa DRAW (29-27,27-27,28-28)

 

 

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K-1 Europe Planning 95kg World Grand Prix on October 27th

While K-1 Japan has been putting on some of the best shows in the world, K-1 outside of Japan has been rather quiet. K-1 GLOBAL was running events in China, but the ongoing details of setting up shop in China have considerably slowed down their approach on China for the moment. 

For fans across the world the K-1 name is still the standard for which all kickboxing is measured and K-1 is returning to Europe, kickboxing's spiritual home. K-1 Europe will operate much in the same vein that K-1 Japan does, operating shows based out of Europe highlighting the best talents around, but while K-1 Japan has lighter weights covered, K-1 Europe will be focusing on heavier weights. Everything kicks off on October 27th in Belgrade, Serbia with the K-1 Europe 95kg World Grand Prix.

This will be a one-night, eight-man tournament, returning to K-1's roots and while no names have been announced yet, the promotion is going to focus on talented up-and-comers as well as established talents in the weight division, with some of the names that I've heard being kicked around as definite crowd-pleasers.

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K-1 WORLD GP 60kgs Tournament Fight Card

K-1 WGP 2016 60kgs Tournament takes place this weekend September 19th in Tokyo Japan at the Yoyogi National Gymnasium. This will as usual be an am

azing card with an 8-man tournament at 60kgs where there is a high possibility that the Urabe brothers are going to fight in the finals again. As hard as it is for me to watch two brothers fight (they have already fought each other multiple times) they do make an exciting fight everytime. Also Kaew Weerasakreck will be defending his 65kgs belt against Hideaki Yamazaki. The last time they fought was in 2014 and Kaew won by decision but Yamazaki has got a lot better so this should be interesting.

Full Card

60kgs Tournament Final - 

65kgs Title - Kaew vs Hideaki Yamazaki

Mokoto Uehara vs Koichi Pettas

Yuji "kyoken" takeuchi vs Kenta Hayashi

60kgs Semi 1 - 

60kgs Semi 2 - 

Makoto Kozu forest vs Hong Chin'yao

Morii Kokai vs Michitaka Uchida

Kuwata Yuta vs Yu Nomura

60kgs Quarterfinal - Kosuke Komiyama vs Paulo Tebar

60kgs Quarterfinal - Koya Urabe vs Karim Bennoui

60kgs Quarterfinal - Hirotaka Urabe vs Johannes Wolf

60kgs Quarterfinal - Taiga vs Javier Hernandez

Toshi vs Koji

Dynamite Yuta Takahashi vs Masanobi Goshu

K-Jee vs Yoshinari 

Kento Ito vs Ryusei Asizawa

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