Love him or hate him, you probably know who Bloodstain Lane is. BSL is one of the most passionate fans of combat sports anywhere around and tells it how it is. It's Showtime's Lyon card is coming up this weekend, May 14th at 4PM Eastern time in the United States on ShowtimeFights.com for 10 Euro (about 13 bucks) and is shaping up to be one of the best fight cards of the year. Here is Bloodstain Lane's latest video where BSL breaks the card down, Queens Style.
We draw nearer and nearer to May 14th's It's Showtime Lyon event, featuring Badr Hari's return bout. The question that we've been slowly answering over the past few weeks is why exactly should we be excited about the return of Badr Hari and where did he go?
Badr Hari had a disappointing 2008, and 2009 was primed to be the year that he finally won a K-1 World Grand Prix title, and as we looked at in our last installment, he made it to the finals again only to be stopped in short order by Semmy Schilt, the now four-time K-1 World Grand Prix Champion. For Badr Hari, this was crushing, as he had worked all year at being "good" and focusing on fighting, finishing out the year at 5 - 1.
The question for 2010 was; now what? Badr Hari had shown self control, skill and power throughout 2010, but it still wasn't enough to get two wins over Semmy Schilt. He came so very, very close to being on top of the kickboxing world, but at the last minute choked. So now it looked like for Badr Hari he must go through another year's worth of trials to give it another shot. His year started off with a bout against solid up-and-comer Mourad Bouzidi for It's Showtime in Prague, Badr was looking for blood.
Bouzidi was able to hold on for the bell in the first round, but was clearly wobbled and ready to go down like a sack of bricks before the ref stepped in. The last combination of a left hook to the jaw and a right to the body was just missing the right hook follow up to put him down on the canvas. The second round starts with an all-out assault on Bouzidi, where a left finally puts him down. Bouzidi gets up only to get put back down a mere minute later by a barrage of lefts and rights. Bouzidi somehow staggers to his feet again to come back for more. Badr finally composes himself a bit and starts throwing more calculated shots until with 10 seconds left in the round he slips in a right uppercut that sends Bouzidi down for good.
What should be noted is the calm, controlled agression of Badr Hari that we saw in 2010 was gone, this Badr Hari was throwing wild flurries again and was being super agressive, caution-to-the-wind style.
What happens next led to his one year layoff, which we'll touch upon tomorrow.
Poor LiverKick.com's Weekly Polls. Fraser Coffeen had to step back from the day-to-day kickboxing grind for the best of his growing family, and sadly I've been playing catch-up with a lot of the things Fraser did on a daily basis. It's safe to say that Fraser did a lot of stuff and we'll miss having him here to help out.
Anyway, onward. In our last poll we asked if there would be a K-1 Heavyweight World Grand Prix this year, and while "Yes" did win, I'm not sure that I believe you guys felt 100% about it.
56.5% of you said yes, there will be a K-1 World Grand Prix.
43.5% believe that no, there will not be.
We are still unsure of exactly what'll happen with K-1, as we were due for a K-1 announcement last week and it never happened, this all just seems par for the course. I love your optimism and I'll do my best to share it.
This week's poll is about controversial Super Heavyweight Badr Hari; Do You Think that Badr Hari is the Best (Current) Super Heavyweight in the World?
Today, after weeks of speculation for a big announcement, It's Showtime announced their new "Fast and Furious Five 70MAX Tournament" which will take place on September 24 in Brussels, Belgium. Many fans have expressed the desire for a one night tournament much like the K-1 World Grand Prix and now it's finally here.The winner will have to get through three fights in one night to clam a 50 000 Euro prize on top of their fight salary and win bonuses.
The event features some of the top -70kg fighters in the world with names you'll surely be familiar with. The eight participants are as follows:
What's also interesting about this tournament is that this is not too far off of the regular schedule for the K-1 MAX World Grand Prix Finals. With the chances looking slim of having a K-1 MAX World Grand Prix this year, this will most likely act as the premier -70kg tournament of the year. Petrosyan, Souwer, Kyshenko and Drago have been mainstays in the K-1 MAX World Grand Prix for a while now and with them set to participate in this tournament, it makes you wonder what they would opt to do if a K-1 MAX World Grand Prix was announced around the same time as this event. Take the guaranteed money you could get for It's Showtime or venture into K-1 where the worldwide glory is, despite numerous fighters having claimed to not have been paid.
The full announcement can be seen on It's Showtime's website here.
Big event at Lumpinee going on right now!
Former fighter of the year Rungruanglek Lukprabart is slotted in the co-main event slot, but most of the focus is on Sam-A Thor Ratonakiat vs. current fighter of the year, Kongsak Sitboonme.
The Muaythai2000 site has the results as they happen.
Video of Sam-A vs. Kongsak will likely be up on the siamsport website later today, so stay tuned.
Sorry if this looks discombobulated, posting from my phone. :)
One week away from his May 14th showdown in Lyon for It's Showtime, Badr Hari is looking absolutely jacked. Really impressive considering if you think back 6 years ago when he was that skinny Moroccan kid.
So you're all hyped for It's Showtime Lyon on May 14. You're hearing all this talk about the return of Badr Hari and how this is the most stacked card of the year. You look into the card a bit more, browse through all the great match ups and you see Badr Hari vs. ...Gregory Tony? Who could this be?
Many people technically don't know him. If you look around you can see that no one's even sure of his real name. Take a look around the internet and you'll notice that you'll find about half of the results are for Tony Gregory and the other half are for Gregory Tony. I guess those are the troubles you encounter when you have two first names as your name. It's Showtime lists him as Tony Gregory. In his recent big time boxing match against Robert Helenius, he was listed as Gregory Tony. We can indeed confirm that his name is Gregory Tony.
So let's get to the question. Who is Gregory Tony? Gregory Tony is a 6'5, 230lb Super Heavyweight fighter from France who will be taking on Badr Hari, May 14th in Lyon for It's Showtime.
Early in his career in the mid to late 1990s Tony fought around France, becoming the Muaythai champion of the country in 1996, 1999 and 2000 and Kickboxing champ in 1995, 1996 and 2000. In 2001, Tony started fighting in K-1 with a disqualification win over Swedish fighter Jorgen Kruth. The next year he went on to win the K-1 World Grand Prix 2002 in Marseilles tournament with 3 straight wins over Karim Aouaden, Phillipe Gomis and Azem Matsukaj. The next year in 2003, Tony would again win another K-1 tournament, this time winning the K-1 World Grand Prix Preliminary France with Daniel Waciakowski, Fabrice Bernardin and again Azem Matsukaj in the final for the second year in a row.
For the next few years, Tony went on to fight for K-1 all over Europe, facing names such as Alexander Ustinov twice, Humberto Evora, Vitali Akhramenko and Patrice Quarteron. In 2006 he split two fights with Daniel Ghita, knocking Ghita out in the first encounter and being knocked out by a right hook from Ghita in the rematch.
The year 2006 was also the year Gregory Tony started his professional boxing career. Tony would go back and forth between boxing and kickboxing from the end of 2006 until 2008, racking up a 9-0 record in boxing and getting a win over Alexey Ignashov and a loss to Zabit Samedov in kickboxing. Tony moved more towards boxing in 2009 with 3 wins, improving his record to 12-0. At the end of 2009, he came back to kickboxing and fought to a draw over 5 rounds with Fabrice Aurieng, still retaining his WKBC Heavyweight title. That was the last time he would fight in kickboxing.
In August of 2010, after not having fought in any combat sports for 9 months, Gregory Tony returned for the biggest boxing match of his career. At this point, he was ranked one of the best heavyweights in all of France. Facing Robert Helenius of Finland, one of the biggest up and coming fighters in boxing. Tony was dropped in rounds 3, 4, 5 and 6 when the fight was finally stopped. Tony continued with boxing this year, picking up a win each in March and April.
Just last night, mere hours ago, Gregory Tony fought in the British "Prizefighter" International Heavyweight Tournament. He defeated Russian journeyman of both boxing and kickboxing, Evgeny Orlov by controversial split decision in the first round. In the second round, he was stopped in the first round by Cuban-Irish Mike Perez. Now you may be thinking..Wait, he got stopped in the first round, how is he fighting Badr Hari in a week? Well, supposedly he had hurt his arm when he was dropped but many people are questioning that and think he may have just been looking for a way out. We'll never know but as of now he is still fighting Badr Hari.
And that leaves us where we are right now. A week away from It's Showtime Lyon on May 14th. In kickboxing, Gregory Tony is coming off a longer layoff than Badr Hari. He's been keeping active in boxing but you have to wonder if this whole time he's even been training kickboxing or just focusing solely on boxing.
Two big names in the Muay Thai world are set to clash on May 31st in Hong Kong. Fight Factory has put together their "Arena" card and in the main event, Belarussian Andrei Kulebin takes on the current Super Welterweight champ of Lumpinee Stadium, Saiyok Pumpanmuang under full Thai rules. Kulebin looks to bounce back from a lackluster win over Italian Angelo Campoli at Fight Code: Dragon Series Round 2 on March 12. Kulebin picked up the win but the fight was more competitive than many thought it would be. Saiyok has not lost for years and is looking to continue his winning streak with a convincing win over the Belarussian.
Mosab "The Jaguar" Amrani is one of the breakout stars in the European kickboxing world after a few great bouts for It's Showtime, including a Fight of the Year Contender against Mootje Khamal at It's Showtime: The Sand in December. He has another fight for It's Showtime coming up on May 14th at It's Showtime Lyon against Houcine Bennoui. So where has he been training for this bout? At Superpro Samui in Thailand, one of the better-known, quality Thai Boxing camps, best known for Pajonsuk Superpro Samui. Many feel that Amrani is one of the fighters to watch over the coming years, so watch Amrani training and follow his path to becoming one of the best.