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LiverKick Podcast - Volume 11: Glory 2 Brussels and K-1 Preview

  • Published in LK Podcast

This weekend saw the GLORY World Series put on their Glory 2 Brussels event in Brussels, Belgium, headlined by Remy Bonjasky vs. Anderson "Braddock" Silva. The return bout of Bonjasky was a big deal, as was Gokhan Saki taking on Mourad Bouzidi and a slew of other big matches. Join Rian Scalia (@rianscalia) and myself (@LiverKickdotcom / @dvewlsh) as we run through the Glory World Series event as well as look at next weekend's K-1 Final 16 and the inherent lack of hype surrounding it.

{music}podcast{/music}

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LiverKick.com Rankings - June 2012

  • Published in Rankings
June 2012 June 2012 June 2012

Heavyweight

1. Semmy Schilt
2. Daniel Ghita
3. Badr Hari
4. Gokhan Saki
5. Errol Zimmerman
6. Peter Aerts
7. Sergei Laschenko
8. Rico Verhoeven
9. Hesdy Gerges
10. Tyrone Spong
Light Heavyweight
1. Artem Levin
2. Hicham el Gaoui
3. Alexander Oleynik
4. Dmitry Shakuta
5. Alexander Stretsurenko
6. Simon Marcus
7. Artem Vakhitov
8. Constantin Tutu
9. Yordan Yankov
10. Yoann Kongolo
Middleweight
1. Giorgio Petrosyan
2. Robin van Roosmalen
3. Artur Kyshenko
4. Andy Souwer
5. Jury Bessmertny
6. Sudsakorn Sor. Klinmee
7. Frank Giorgi
8. Andy Ristie
9. Abraham Roqueni
10. Shemsi Beqiri
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GLORY Announces Glory World Series 2012 70kg "First 16"

  • Published in Kickboxing

GloryNot to be shown up by K-1, GLORY Sports International sent out a press release to the media today announcing their own 70kg tournament just a day after K-1 Global sent out their press release announcing their MAX tournament. The show was set to be headlined by Semmy Schilt vs. Sergei Kharitonov, but it now looks like Semmy Schilt vs. Errol Zimmerman will be the main event in a Heavyweight Superfight.

The event will be a co-promotion with Rumble of the Kings from Sweden, taking place in Stockholm, Sweden on May 26th. What is interesting is the structure of GLORY starting to show, with the press release listing Cor Hemmers, Bert Van Der Ryd and Martijn de Jong as the management team. Not listed was Bas Boon, who was the one who emailed the press release. If you want to read the press release, they posted images of it on Facebook...

What is also interesting is the declaration of the "Glory World Federation" or GWF, which was founded to be an independent governing body for the sport, but will only rank the fighters affiliated with the Glory World Series/Glory Sports International. On top of that, we have some names for the Heavyweight tournament; "Peter Aerts (Netherlands), Brice Guidon (France), Jerome Le Banner (France), Semmy Schilt (Holland), Gokhan Saki (Turkey), Errol Zimmerman (Curacao), Sergey Kharitonov (Russia), Jamal Ben Saddik (Morocco), Filip Verlinden (Belgium), Ali Cenik (Turkey), Igor Jurkovic (Croatia) and more."

The line-up for this event is as follows;

Final 16 – 70KG – 26th May 2012 Stockholm:

 

1.) Giorgio Petrosyan (Italy) vs Fabio Pinca (France)

2.) Max Vorovski (Estonia) vs Sanny Dahlbeck (Sweden)

3.) Robin van Roosmalen (Netherlands) vs Dzhabar Askerov (Russia)

4.) Ky Hollenback (USA) vs Michael Corley (USA)

5.) Yoshihiro Sato (Japan) vs Shemsi Beqiri (Switserland)

6.) Dennis Schneidmiller (Germany) vs Qi Chenglong (China)

7.) Kem Sitsongpeenong (Thailand) vs Cosmo Alexandre (Brasil)

8.) Albert Kraus (Netherlands) vs Mohamed El Mir (Denmark)

 

Line-up GLORY WORLD SERIES Super Fights – 26th May 2012 Stockholm:

 

1.) Nieky Holzken vs Alex Harris (Sweden)

2.) Semmy Schilt (Netherlands) vs Errol Zimmerman (Curacao)

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LiverKick Talks With Glory's Gokhan Saki

  • Published in Interviews

SakiGokhan Saki put on an impressive performance this weekend against Mourad Bouzidi, his first fight since moving from training with Team Golden Glory under the watchful eye of Cor Hemmers to Mike's Gym under Mike Passenier. This new team switch can be tough for some fighters, but for Saki, it seemed like business-as-usual. Our European correspondents Umut Ismik and Birol Topuz caught up with Saki after his fight to ask him a few questions, and if you know Saki, you know he tells it how it is.

LK: How has training at Mike's Gym been different than training with Golden Glory?

GS: After 10 years of working with Cor it was time for a change and when Cor told me that he accepted a function in the staff of Glory it became clear to me. I needed to think for myself for once in my life so I went to Mike. Everybody said that I was crazy but I believed in myself and in Mike of course. It was hard in the beginning but Mike did his best to make me feel at home so I made an extra effort to fit in and it worked so far. There is no way in hell to compare these two(Mike and Cor), you have to experience it to know.

LK: Is there anything different that fans should expect to see in Gokhan Saki's style since the gym change?

GS: After my first fight everybody including Cor was very excited so there must be something right. I will always fight like the old Saki because that style is what brought me my enormous fanbase. I'll never change that and Mike doesn't want to change that either. I am just evolving. I will take my style to the next level and maybe some levels more. Ha ha ha. So sit back, relax and enjoy. 

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Tyrone Spong Wins GLORY 9 Light Heavyweight Tournament

  • Published in Glory

Spong

In what was a matchup between the best fighters at Light Heavyweight under the GLORY banner we saw Tyrone Spong square off against Danyo Ilunga in the Light Heavyweight Slam Finals. Both men were worn down from fighting twice earlier in the night, with Ilunga fighting two harder bouts for sure. Both men were primed and ready for action when Spong landed a barrage of strikes that Ilunga was covering up.

In what was a rather confusing turn of events, Ilunga, who was still standing, still covering up and aware of what was happening, was pushed aside by the ref who called the bout in what was one of the worst stoppages that we've seen in a very, very long time. It makes some of the Joop Ubeda stoppages of the last few years look competent. We'll hopefully have footage of the stoppage in a bit up on the site, but if you somehow missed it, trust us, Spong was looking good, but Ilunga was not down and out by any stretch of the imagination.

Congratulations go out to Tyrone Spong, though, as he won the GLORY Light Heavyweight Slam in New York, which is a feather in his cap no matter what.

GIF from ZombieProphet.

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GLORY CEO Andrew Whitaker Talks SuperFight Series and More

  • Published in Interviews

GLORY

When it comes to Kickboxing, there is nothing hotter right now that GLORY Sports International, best know for the GLORY Kickboxing events. GLORY houses some of the Kickboxing world’s greatest talents and have been putting on some of the best shows in the sport for over a year now. GLORY began when Pierre Andurand and Marcus Luer teamed up with Golden Glory, who had some success with their own Ultimate Glory and Glory World Series events, to make the promotion that we know now, and since then it has been growing rapidly into one of the top combat sports leagues in the world.

LiverKick sat down with GLORY Sports International’s CEO, Andrew Whitaker, to discuss all things GLORY and what is in store for the promotion in the near and far future. Whitaker initially served on the board of directors for GLORY Sports International before transitioning to the CEO position this January and it has been an interesting transition for him, coming from a background in entertainment and sports entertainment, previously working at Kings Highway Media and most notably for WWE. His career within the WWE spanned many years and many positions, placing him in a rather unique position when it comes to producing sports entertainment television and expanding a business on an international scale.

The transition for Whitaker was one that forced him to get down and really learn about the business before he took the reins of the company this year. “Obviously there was a period of immersion to all things GLORY kickboxing. As you know, I obviously worked in entertainment for many years, albeit working with the sports business as well with my former employer. It was more the sports and entertainment businesses, as it was more efficient to do so. In that sense, the licensing people in sports, the live events people in sports on a global basis, the media rights people in sports on a global basis are all people that I’ve been working with for a very, very long time. While I come from what is a very successful entertainment brand and helped grow a global entertainment brand, the transition for me to sports was more about me learning about the specific sport of kickboxing than it is on a business-to-business basis, or a business-to-consumer basis that we have here in America and globally.”

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Looking at It's Showtime's Legacy in the Kickboxing World

It's ShowtimeToday the big announcement from Glory Sports International was the purchase of top competitor It’s Showtime, merging the talent from It’s Showtime in with the talent from Glory. For the first time since K-1 under FEG stopped running shows, the Kickboxing world is united again. It’s Showtime had a working agreement with K-1 Global which was at least active for the K-1 Rising in Madrid show, which was actually ran entirely by It’s Showtime staff, but it appears that the relationship was not as strong as everyone suspected.

That was, apparently, when the talks with Glory began. It’s Showtime’s history dates back to 1998 when the company was founded by Simon Rutz, with their first official show taking place in 1999. Over the years, It’s Showtime grew in popularity and even forged a partnership with K-1 for their European shows, putting on a few co-branded events at the Amsterdam ArenA in some of their biggest shows.

There might be a lot of revisionist history in the future, but It’s Showtime leaves behind a truly interesting legacy, including some truly memorable Kickboxing shows and Simon Rutz building an empire of European talent which was only rivaled by Bas Boon’s Golden Glory. It’s Showtime did things that K-1 did not dare to do, and when it did them, it did them extremely well. This includes the addition of numerous weight classes as well as additional ringside judges. It might sound trivial, but K-1 only dabbled in weight classes outside of Super Heavyweight/Heavyweight and Middleweight, never truly made a commitment to it, and fighters like Tyrone Spong might never of gotten to this level if it weren’t for It’s Showtime having multiple weight classes to highlight a wide array of talent.

On the judging front, it was a very simple concept, yet one that you very rarely see implemented outside of in It’s Showtime. In MMA fans will be upset, it seems almost weekly now, over poor judging in fights that go the distance. Rutz and Co. saw this and added more judges to ensure that even if a judge or two completely misjudged the fight, the proper fighter would not be robbed of a victory. On top of that, their matchmaking was always making the best of what they had available to them, which meant that not every card was stacked top-to-bottom, but they always featured recognizable names and always gave younger fighters a stage to prove themselves in.

It was these ideas and more that made It’s Showtime a runaway success and helped propel them to the top of the kickboxing world. It is not clear what will happen to the It’s Showtime brand, but it seems like an incredibly valuable asset and still holds a lot of clout in the kickboxing world. As of this moment there are still two It’s Showtime events on the schedule, one in July in Spain and one in September in Japan. These shows could easily be re-branded into Glory cards, but they could also simply be It’s Showtime events.

The winners tend to write the history books, and I say that we do the best that we can to remember what It’s Showtime meant for Kickboxing and remember It’s Showtime’s legacy for what it was. It’s Showtime proved that you didn’t need the K-1 name to be successful in the kickboxing game and even showed how to work with local promoters to put on events while putting on the best cards possible for fans and the fighters.

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Photo of the Day: Glory World Heavyweight Championship

  • Published in K-1

Tomorrow Errol "Bonecrusher" Zimmerman will square off against Semmy Schilt, the four time K-1 World Grand Prix Champion and former K-1 Super Heavyweight Champion, and the winner takes home the big, new Glory World Heavyweight Championship belt. For Zimmerman, this would be his first major championship outside of the 2008 K-1 Amsterdam tournament and the 2011 SuperKombat Fight Club tournament wins.

Glory Heavyweight Championship

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GLORY 9 New York Photo Gallery

  • Published in News

Ghita

GLORY 9 New York went down this weekend with a lot of action and luckily for you, we've been all over it. Our good friend from MiddleEasy, Bauzen, was in attendance at the event with his camera doing some work for the WKA and happened to graciously pass along his photos to us for the site. Get a look at some of the most intense moments from GLORY 9 New York courtesy of Bauzen.

 

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Glory Sports International Adds Former FIFA and Olympic Exec Graeme White to Management Team

  • Published in Glory

GloryGlory Sports International continue to expand their internationally-renowned management team with the latest acquisition this week by the way of Graeme White. Graeme White has formerly worked to help promote the Olympic Games as well as the FIFA World Cup and UEFA Champions League. He brings with him a wealth of high-level sports management from an executive level, which can only add to their management team and help them with future events.

Entire press release follows.

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