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It's Showtime May 21st Preview: Mohammed Khamal vs. Robin van Roosmalen

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In the co-main event, Mohammed Khamal and Robin van Roosmalen battle it out in what many are calling a potential fight of the year candidate.

There's history between these two men. They've met before. Back in March 2010, they met in Utrecht in the semi-finals of the K-1 World MAX West Europe Tournament. Khamal knocked van Roosmalen out at the end of the first round and went on to win the tournament, qualifying for the K-1 MAX World Grand Prix Final 16. Now just over a year later, van Roosmalen is looking for revenge.

Since that fight in March of last year, things have changed. Robin van Roosmalen isn't the unknown that he was back then. He's made a name for himself fighting for Ultimate Glory and It's Showtime. After the loss to Khamal, he lost again to Ajay Balgobind but ever since then he's been on a tear. Currently on a 5 fight win streak, van Roosmalen is one of the most hyped up and coming -70kg fighters at the moment. Wins over William Diender and Chahid Oulad El Hadj during his win streak have helped garner interest for the Dutchman.

Mohammed Khamal did go on to win the tournament and advance to the Final 16 but 2 months later he lost to Chahid Oulad El Hadj. Then last October, in what raised many eyebrows, he defeated Artur Kyshenko who is widely considered top 5 at -70kg. Coming off another career high point, he lost to Gago Drago at the Final 8 in November once again derailing his hype. His last fight happened in December, where he needed an extra round to defeat Mosab Amrani in one of the fights of 2010.

A win for either fighter will boost them much higher in the ranks of the -70kg division. This will be van Roosmalen's toughest test since the first fight and he'll definitely be ready to go, having fought and won twice in March.  Khamal hasn't fought since December and it'll be interesting to see how the layoff affects him.

Both men are pretty small guys for -70kg and aren't big hitters. Khamal is the more technical fighter while van Roosmalen tries to force the fight more. van Roosmalen has already been knocked out by Khamal once so he'll have to be extra careful. His style might leave him open to a counter from Khamal and it could be lights out. van Roosmalen works the body effectively and that should be a key to winning this fight. Working Khamal's body will slow him down and open up opportunities to tee off on him. At times Khamal can be either teeing off or getting teed off on. Getting teed off on by van Roosmalen probably isn't in his best interest as the body shots will add up.

This fight could be a lot similar to Khamal's fight with Mosab Amrani just without the non stop aggression that Amrani is known for. The fight went back and forth with Khamal and Amrani taking turns on who was on the offensive. van Roosmalen always tries to go forward, not too aggressively while Khamal is content moving and finding a spot to strike. Combinations will be essential for both fighters and you'll likely see a lot of them as they go back and forth on the offensive.

The fight should be high paced and exciting. Don't miss this one. It's a tough fight to call but I'd say Khamal's technical advantage will win him a decision. I see him outworking van Roosmalen, landing the better shots. Khamal has been against a top 5 fighter in Artur Kyshenko and managed to beat him. I'm not sure van Roosmalen is ready for that level of competition yet.


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It's Showtime May 21st Preview: Amir Zeyada vs. Sahak Parparyan

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In the fourth fight of the main card, the It's Showtime 85MAX World Title is up for grabs as Sahak Parparyan and Amir Zeyada battle it out for the belt.

Amir Zeyada has spent his career fighting in lower weight classes such as -70kg, -73kg and -77kg. This will be his first fight at -85kg, a big step up in weight. His last fight took place at -76kg and he lost that one against Murthel Groenhart. Having not fought for over a year you have to wonder if he'll be ready to face such a challenge in Sahak Parparyan. Judging from the weigh in pictures, Zeyada looks to have spent the time putting on the weight properly.

Sahak Parparyan is the exact opposite. He's spent his career fighting in the higher weight classes, most recently at -95kg back on March 26 against Marco Vlieger where he won a decision. Sahak looked much thinner than I've ever seen him at the weigh ins, as shown in the picture above. Once again, you have to wonder how the big change in weight has affected him. Just 2 months ago he fought at -95kg.

The fight being a 5 round fight should also ask some questions. Both men have proven they can go the distance, but with the new weight class, will they be able to last for all 5 rounds? Zeyada is a pretty high paced fighter while Sahak likes to take his time. We can't assume how the new weights will affect the fighters except for that usually getting bigger will slow down a fighter and cutting down will result in more speed and better conditioning if done right. Zeyada is the one who is moving up and Sahak the one who is moving down. Zeyada looks to have put on the weight well and surprisingly looks a bit bigger than Sahak.

Amir Zeyada has lost a lot of fights in the lower weight classes. Most of the times he's just gotten outskilled and a few times stopped. Moving up in weight isn't an easy task. A lot of fighters who move up can't maintain their chins in a higher weight class. Zeyada has been dropped and stopped before at lower weight classes. Sahak isn't a knockout artist by any means but he is primarily a puncher who throws hand combinations. With Sahak having fought at higher weight classes, it's hard to see him being hurt by Zeyada as well.

With Sahak primarily throwing punches, Zeyada will have to utilize his kicks which he can throw quite hard. Zeyada's kicks are the key to wearing Sahak down and limiting the power on his punches. It'd be better for Sahak to throw some kicks also as Zeyada is pretty susceptible to low kicks. Sahak will need to be active with his hands and work combinations to the body and head. Sometimes Sahak won't be active enough and that will result in Zeyada throwing a lot of hard kicks at him.

With both fighters changing weight classes, it's hard to say who will get the better of the weight change. I'd lean towards Sahak as he's fought in higher weight classes and felt power that Amir Zeyada probably doesn't possess. With Zeyada having been worked so many times in lower weight classes, it's hard to see him being able to withstand the Sahak's punches even though he isn't even a big puncher. 85kg is 9kg above where he last fought. That's almost 20lbs that he's moved up and 20lbs more power that he'll have to withstand. You also have to ask if he'll be slower with the added weight.

I favor Sahak in the fight just because Zeyada has never fought this high in weight. While Sahak has gone down almost 20lbs, it should only make him better. Zeyada won't be able to phase him and should be there all night for Sahak to hit him. Sahak will just have to stay active and he should be able to wear Zeyada down, possibly stopping him.

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It's Showtime May 21st Preview: Mohammed Medhar vs. Hafid el Boustati

medharTwo Moroccan warriors clash in the third fight of the card as Mohammed Medhar takes on Hafid el Boustati.

Mohammed Medhar scored a big win over Gago Drago last September. Shortly after, many fans began to take notice. He went on to beat Jan van Denderen the next month and continued his on his roll. Unfortunately for him, his hype was derailed when he lost to Warren Stevelmans on the March 6 It's Showtime event in Amsterdam. Medhar looks to get back on track with a win over Hafid el Boustati.

Hafid el Boustati is looking to add to his resume of wins, already consisting of Chahid Oulad El Hadj and William Diender. el Boustati is coming off a draw on February 6 in Spain against Manuel Hinojo. He'll look to get back on track and higher into the ranks of the -70kg division with a win. el Boustati fights with a style that many Moroccan fighters like his stablemate Mosab Amrani have become known for, being fearless warriors in the ring.

Both fighters love to brawl and push forward throwing combos filled with power shots. Medhar proved in his fight against Gago Drago that he can go full speed for 3 full rounds and out pressure a pressure fighter. Although Medhar appeared tired at times, he pushed through it with pure grit and determination. Grit and determination will be the story of this fight as Hafid el Boustati won't be one to back down either.

Punches and kicks will be flying all over the place as one man looks to establish an advantage over his opponent. Each fighter will probably take turns backing up as they try to dictate the fight. I'd give the power advantage to Medhar. He has the type of power that can change a fight, visibly rocking Gago Drago and stopping Jan van Denderen. el Boustati is a tough customer and it will take a lot to phase him.

This fight has a good chance of being a war and possible fight of the night. Both men will leave it all on the line in the ring. Medhar looks to come back off a loss and el Boustati looks to come back off a disappointing draw. Hunger will be in the air and whoever wants it more will likely get it.

Don't be surprised if Medhar's power changes the fight in the blink of an eye. Still very young, you don't even know if Medhar has his "man strength" yet. He could get it all of a sudden and start knocking guys out left and right. I don't know about a knockout, but I do think Medhar will get the win in a hard fought fight. Look for a close decision in a back and forth fight with Medhar getting the better of the exchanges.

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Big Night on HDnet; The Voice Versus Hulk Hogan and It's Showtime Lyon

Some quick programming notes for tonight, as HDnet adds on to their usual programming of Inside MMA and a fight card with a few awesome additions tonight. While tomorrow is the live It's Showtime event from The Sand in Amsterdam featuring Hesdy Gerges, tonight It's Showtime makes their United States debut on HDnet. What was a really fun card headlined by Badr Hari and a scared-out-of-his-mind Gregory Tony should be fun to watch with Michael Schiavello and Melvin Manhoef calling the action. The show was filled with some awesome knockouts and great action, but is just a taste of whats to come if you for some reason haven't seen It's Showtime yet.

It's Showtime airs at 11PM Eastern time.

That is of course directly following after the latest episode of Michael Schiavello's "The Voice Versus" series, a series of sit down interviews that pits Schiavello mano-e-mano with some of the biggest names in the world of combat sports. He takes a bit of a departure for this episode and will sit opposite someone who has had a very different impact on the world of fighting; Hulk Hogan. Now, I know what some people are thinking, that Hulk Hogan was just a professional wrestler from the 80's and maybe 90's if you were young enough or even young enough at heart.

What many seem to disregard is how closely related professional wrestling and MMA really are, with the easiest example I can think of is how the first season of The Ultimate Fighter can directly credit a lead-in from WWE's Monday Night RAW program. The first TUF was a bit over-the-top, with some larger than life characters and a lot of drama, it just so happened to also be one of the most talent-rich casts of the show ever. The sad irony is that was the first season, but the format has yielded some other contenders and champions after that first season. But, the point is that the professional wrestling audience that spilled over helped give MMA and the UFC a ton of exposure in a world that was still being a bit cold to Mixed Martial Arts.

Schiavello is clearly well-school in pro wrestling, asking questions about Hogan's career in Japan, the AWA and other parts of his early career outside of the standard "who was your favorite opponent" line of questioning. Hogan was, for what it's worth, pretty honest when in the past he has been known to pat himself on his back and push for his own agenda. A lot of older professional wrestlers have gone the way of the "shoot interview" -- a concept best known to hardcore wrestling fans, where an older wrestler sits down and talks about the wrestling world and "tells it how it is." This is of course rare, less rare since the surge of the internet, but the wrestling world is secretive and many wrestlers don't like to break down the wall between outsiders and themselves.

Hogan came across as personable and a bit humbled, especially when talking about some of his fallen friends such as Andre the Giant and more recent losses such as "Mr. Perfect" Curt Hennig and "Ravishing" Rick Roode.

The Voice Versus airs at 10PM on HDnet tonight.

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It's Showtime May 21st Preview: Evgeniy Kurovskoy vs. Giga Chikadze

kurovskoyOpening up the main card just a week after It's Showtime's Lyon event, Russian Evgeniy Kurovskoy takes on Georgian Giga Chikadze.

Evgeniy Kurovskoy is a -70kg fighter from Russia who now trains out of the Chakuriki Gym under legendary trainer Thom Harinck. Holding just one loss to his name, Kurovskoy looks to move up the ranks in It's Showtime's 70MAX division and inch closer to a title shot. He's still a long ways off but a win over Chikadze will move him to  a 2-0 record in It's Showtime. Kurovskoy won his last fight in It's Showtime with a decision victory over Andre Grigorian in Brussels on March 26.

His opponent, Giga Chikadze is a fighter from Georgia who now trains and fights out of Mike's Gym alongside Badr Hari and Melvin Manhoef. Chikadze will look to get his name out there with a win. A convincing win over Kurovskoy would definitely make the division take notice as Kurovskoy was originally slated to be in the monster -70kg tournament.

Both fighters like to move forward but Kurovskoy will relentlessly come forward for the whole fight. While the level of technique between these two isn't that high, they both could make up for it with their aggression. Kurovskoy will throw a counter lead hook while his opponent makes a move which could be a key factor in this fight. I'd probably give the edge in technique to Kurovskoy as Chikadze can get wild with his punches. Both like to counter off exchanges but Kurovskoy's lead hook will likely land better than Chikadze's more wild punches.

Both fighters aren't too worried about defense, sacrificing a lot of it in favor of offense. Expect a lot of flush shots landing in exchanges when they decide to trade in the pocket. Chikadze will likely be the one backing up and coming out worse in the exchanges.

The lack of strong technique in some areas could lead to this fight being a good old fashioned brawl. This could be the sleeper fight of the card as both guys won't hesitate to throw down.

Kurovskoy will likely dictate the fight and back Chikadze up. Expect Kurovskoy's pressure to take over the fight while Chikadze covers up without any offense at times. Kurovskoy will move forward and get the unanimous decision.

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Fight Game to Broadcast the Glory World Series LIVE on YouTube PPV

We've entered a brave new world for kickboxing, as Fight Game has been doing a lot of hustling behind the scenes lately. This is another big piece of news that we've been sitting on out of respects for the companies and not wishing to do any potential harm to such huge news as this. Fight Game, a company run by Golden Glory's Bas Boon and Vale Tudo legend Frederico Lapenda have made some huge strides, not only will the Glory World Series be aired on HDnet on June 17th, but they have entered into a deal with Google's YouTube to produce YouTube's very first PPV broadcast. Here is the official press release. Our sources tell us to expect to pay ten dollars for the live event.

International mixed martial arts(MMA) and combat sports pay-per-view(PPV) pioneers Frederico Lapenda and Bas Boon have been breaking new ground around the world since 1994, they were the 4th producers to produce a MMA Pay Per View in then US, co-producers of the first MMA event in Holland and Japan, their event introduced PPV in Brazil, and now taking it to the next level with GLORY WORLD SERIES, this will the first PPV ever done by YouTube and it will feature MMA and kickboxing on the same card.

GLORY aims to reach the widest possible audience by broadcasting its event through Youtube, the most popular video sharing broadcast company in the world..

The event will take place in Moscow, Russia and this 14th edition will crown the winners of two eight-man tournaments, one in kickboxing and one in MMA, which have been ongoing for the past two events. Drama will high and tempers will be short as the finalists clash for the winner's purse of $150,000 each, in addition to their appearance fee.

FIGHTGAMETV.COM see a great demand for GLORY worldwide based on the fact that On Demand in the U.S. has a universe of 100 million homes and MMA franchises have been able to pull a 1.5 percent viewership approximately U$50.00 a hit generating hundreds of millions of dollars a year in the US alone.

GLORY is one of the top three fight shows in the world in viewership, production quality, and fighter level. The shows are broadcast in the US by HD Net and in over 80 other countries and have been held in Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, and Moscow.

GLORY will feature fighters from over 11 different countries including MMA fighters Rasul Mirzaev (Russia), Dennis Stojnic (Bosnia), D. Staring (Holland), R. Savochka (Russia), Zabit Samedov (Belarus), Jason Jones (Holland), Houston Alexander (USA), and Kickboxers Gokhan Saki (Turkey) Artur Kyshenko (Uraine)I. Jurkovic (Croatia), Pavel Zuravliov (Ukraine), Nicolaj Filan (Germany), Mark "Fightshark" Miller (USA), Errol Zimmerman (Surinam), M. Bouzidi (Tunesia), Sergei Kharitonov (Russia), Mighty Mo (USA) N. Holzken (Holland).

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It's Showtime App Available for iPhone and Android

Social Media is a very big deal these days, keeping up with your fans, friends and peers has become a lot easier. Zuffa has even instituted a bonus program for UFC and Strikeforce fighters who use Twitter to intelligently promote themselves and their respective brands. With that comes the advent of the world of mobile computing and how smartphones have taken over the world of technology. I've spent the past four years of my life with some form of smartphone, from old Windows Mobile hunks of junk with a stylus, to ones that I was able to flash Android on via SD card (I'm a phone nerd, shoot me), to an array of Android phones (and an iPod Touch to stay in tune with the Apple world), from the HTC Hero, Moto Droid and Moto Droid X. I've always felt like the smartphone was the next step in technology that would be pivotal to society, probably the biggest leap forward since the internet.

While that might sound ridiculous to some, those are probably people who don't own a smartphone. There is a reason why people used to call BlackBerry phones "CrackBerries." Smartphones are addictive and keep you constantly connected to the world. My phones before smartphones were used for occasional phone calls and usually just text messaging and maybe a poorly hacked together email on a slow-as-molasses internet connection. Maybe I had 2 songs on the phone before it filled up. Now I use my phone for everything; it has a good selection of music on it, has a few movies for when I'm traveling, I have two applications for Twitter spread over three accounts, Facebook, the main way I check and send emails, I even have it synched up to my home laptop so I can access my entire music catalog on the go without having to worry about filling up my SD card. It is also the main way that I get news, as when I wake up every day I check a select few newsreader applications.

It's Showtime has thrown its hat into the ring into the world of mobile applications, targeting the two biggest platforms with the most market share. iPhone and Android have been neck-and-neck for a while now, if you stay up on mobile news you'll know that some reports are that Android has more activations a day but iPhone will have more web browsing and so on. Basically, if you have a smartphone you probably have an Android phone or an iPhone, that or you have a BlackBerry or Windows Phone through work. It's Showtime announced that they will support those two platforms in the future, though, so if you are an early adapter for Microsoft's latest OS or you can't let go of the glory days of BBOS you won't be left in the dust. If you have Palm, well, you bet on the wrong horse in the race, but man that OS sure is pretty.

This is a great move, after announcing expansion into the United States with the HDnet deal it is incredible timing. It is a basic newsfeed application with tabs on the bottom to each section. The sections are News, Video, Chat (a message board-like thing), Photos, Agenda and Settings. The first few are self-explanatory, the agenda shows the upcoming schedule and Settings allows you to link in your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. So yes, you can have your Badr Hari videos on the go.

So go ahead and grab it now, for iPhone on the iTunes Store, or on the Android Market.

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This Week in Kickboxing: It's Showtime and SuperKombat on May 21st

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Like this past Saturday, May 21st is another big day for kickboxing with many big names and highly ranked fighters competing.

Just a week after the huge card in Lyon, It's Showtime is heading back home to Amsterdam and putting on a great card on May 21st. While the card may not feature the same star power that this past week's card had, it's guaranteed to be just as action packed if not more exciting. It's Showtime gives many great fighters that you may not have heard of to get a chance to shine on the big stage.

In the main event, Hesdy Gerges makes his return after another short stint in prison to face Englishman Chris Knowles. In the co-main event, Robin van Roosmalen, a rising star of kickboxing takes on Mohammed Khamal. This is a rematch of their fight from 2010 where Khamal won by knockout in the first round. This fight is almost guaranteed to be a fight of the year candidate. Expect fireworks. There's also a title fight for the vacant It's Showtime 85MAX World Title. Sahak Parparyan will be taking on Amir Zeyada, who is moving up from 77kg for the belt. And before that, Mohammed Medhar, who recently beat Gago Drago in December will be fighting Hafid el Boustati in what should be another action packed -70kg fight. Don't sleep on this card, it will most likely be better than the Lyon card.

For the full card, click here.

Now we head to Bucharest, Romania on May 21st for the SuperKombat World Grand Prix I. A 4 man heavyweight tournament will be taking place featuring Dzevad Poturak, Sergei Lascenko, Roman Kleibl and Jairzinho Rozenstruik. Rico Verhoeven will be fighting American Justice Smith in the reserve bout. Romanian K-1 veteran Sebastien Ciobanu will be taking on Ratislav Talarovic in a heavyweight super fight. The biggest name on the card, Albert Kraus will be fighting Romanian Marius Tita in a -71.8kg super fight. Right before the heavyweight tournament final, rising Romanian star Bogdan Stoica will be fighting in a Wako-Pro -88.68 kg Intercontinental Title Match against Frenchman Pacome Assi. SuperKombat is formerly known as Local Kombat. They've changed their name to SuperKombat because of their big pursuits that they're now taking into the kickboxing game, trying to have big cards with big name fighters and becoming one of the biggest promotions in Europe.

For the full card, click here.

There's also another heayweight tournament on May 21st in Contrexeville, France. This one is an 8 man tournament including full Thai rules with the most notable name being Tyrone Spong's next opponent, Spaniard Loren Javier Jorge.

Overall, another good week to look forward to for kickboxing. Be on the lookout for news, analysis and stories throughout the week

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Scope Out UFC's Stefan Struve Training With Daniel Ghita and Dirty Bob

If you are going to train, you might as well train with the very best, and that is exactly what Stefan Struve is doing for his upcoming fight. A lot of newer fans might not know of the name Dirty Bob Schrijber, but he is a legend of sorts. Bob is a legendary kickboxer from the Netherlands, and one of the more notable transitions into the world of MMA from the Netherlands. His nickname comes from the fact that, well, he has been known to fight a little dirty. From an Axe Kick to the head of a downed Daijiro Matsui in PRIDE to "changing the oil" of a few opponents (I'm not explaining that, google it). Dirty Bob started off strong, but was one of the fighters that come the turn-of-the-century found himself older and at a serious disadvantage when it comes to grappling and reach.

He has been training Stefan Struve for UFC for a while now, and in AFAV's latest video documenting UFC star Stefan Struve's training camp there is a special appearance from K-1 and It's Showtime fighter Daniel Ghita to help drill his stand up. Check it out.

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Watch the Mark Fightshark Miller Return Hype Video

Mark Miller comes back to the ring after heart surgery on May 28th in Moscow, Russia for The Glory World Series event. There he will be facing Nikolaj Falin, an accomplished Heavyweight Kickboxer in his own right, while the world will be able to view it. The Glory World Series will air in over 90 countries worldwide, including the United States on HDnet on June 17th. If you aren't already hyped up, this will help. Spread this around, post it onto your Facebook, post it on Twitter, email it to your friends. Get the word out that Mark Miller is coming back.

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