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It's Showtime Announces New May Show

  • Published in Kickboxing

It's ShowtimeMore news from the ever-busy It's Showtime - this time it's a new show added to their 2011 schedule.  On May 21, the company returns to The Sand in Amsterdam for It's Showtime 48, and there is already a solid partial line-up announced.

In a Heavyweight fight, It's Showtime HW champion and top 10 ranked Hesdy Gerges will face Chris Knowles.  Knowles is a well regarded English Muay Thai stylist.  He was originally set to face Rico Verhoeven for IS late last year, but was forced off the card due to travel difficulties.  He's a good pick up for It's Showtime, and will make a strong addition to their Heavyweight ranks, although he definitely has a tough task ahead of him here.  Gerges will be coming in off his career high win over Daniel Ghita, and will look to continue his rise through the ranks.

The fight that most has my attention is a 70kg bout between Mohamed Khamal and Robin van Roosmalen.  Khamal made the jump up to 70kg last year, and promptly made an impact, winning the K-1 West Europe GP, knocking Artur Kyshenko out of the MAX GP, and putting on one of the best fights of 2010 in his defeat of Mosab Amrani.  He has quickly established himself as both a dynamic fighter, and a real force in the Middleweight division.  van Roosmalen is in almost the exact same position as Khamal was not long ago.  The young fighter is currently on a five fight win streak, including defeats of William Diender and an impressive win over Chahid Oulad el Hadj.  Like Khamal, he is a rising fighter, and is poised to be one of the break out fighters of 2011.  This will be a rematch, as the two men met in the semi-finals of last year's 2010 K-1 MAX West Europe GP - Khamal took that fight via 2nd round KO en route to claiming the tournament crown.  With two exciting, young, hungry fighters, this has all the ingredients to not only steal the show, but be a highlight fight of 2011.

One other fight to note is Anderson "Braddock" Silva vs. Jamal Ben Saddik.  Saddik is the fighter who scored a surprise KO win over Rico Verhoeven at It's Showtime 46 last month.  If he can score back to back win over Verhoeven and Silva, he will have immediately established himself as a serious challenger, and a name to watch.  Silva is a tough challenge though, as he holds some big wins over the likes of Hesdy Gerges and Freddy Kemayo, who he KO'd with a spectacular head kick to close out 2010.

The full line-up announced so far:

HESDY GERGES vs. CHRIS KNOWLES

ROBIN VAN ROOSMALEN vs. MOHAMED KHAMAL

ANDERSON SILVA vs. JAMAL BEN SADDIK

MOHAMED MEDHAR vs. HAFID EL BOUSTATI

AMIR ZEYADA vs. SAHAK PARPARYAN

JASON WILNIS vs. LAURENT ATRIFFI

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It's Showtime: Why This Show Matters

  • Published in Kickboxing

It's ShowtimeThis Saturday marks the start of the 2011 It’s Showtime season, and in many ways, the start of the major international 2011 season. There have been a few notable fights already this year (Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Sudsakorn and Andy Souwer’s upset loss both come to mind), but this will be the first major top-to-bottom event. So, why should you care about this show? Well…

1. It’s Showtime might very well be the future of kickboxing. This coming year is going to be a big one in determining the future of our sport. With K-1 in serious trouble and the European hotbed of Amsterdam causing headaches for promoters, we could see a drastic reduction in the international scope of professional kickboxing. It’s Showtime is doing everything they can to fight against that tide. By running more and more shows in an increasingly diverse market, they are continuing the steady expansion plan that has brought them success so far. Of course, with expansion there is always a fear that you will overextend yourself, creating a company too large for the resources in hand. So far, It’s Showtime has been very strategic in their expansion, and I think that will continue this year – but there’s no doubt 2011 represents a key moment in the history of kickboxing.

2. The main event is a beautifully matched top 10 showdown. It’s rare in any combat sport that we get two fighters so closely matched, but Daniel Ghita vs. Hesdy Gerges is a perfect match-up. Both men are young fighters who look to be the future of the sport. Both are in the top 10, with Ghita just one spot ahead of Gerges. Both had break-out years in 2009 and 2010, but neither man has yet scored that one major win that propels them to the next level. Most are favoring Ghita here (including a massive 70% of LK readers), which is understandable, but this is a very close fight that Gerges has every opportunity to win. One tough hurdle for the It’s Showtime champ could be his recent arrest for suspected drug trafficking. That case seems to be dropped, but the interruption to his training and the mental stress of being incarcerated can’t be good for a fighter heading into such a serious challenge.

3. Both men in the semi-main event need to win. Andy Souwer vs. L’houcine Ouzgni could easily headline a show. Two technical marvels, this is a fight that will be pure candy for fans of the precise art of stand-up. That’s reason enough to be excited for this one, but there’s an extra element to this fight given where each man stands in his career. Souwer’s last year was not exactly a career highlight for the decorated veteran. After suffering an eye injury and finding himself inexplicably on the outs with K-1 MAX, Souwer has since lost 2 of his last 3 fights – both against unranked opponents. He really needs to win here, but he has a tough task ahead of him. Ouzgni meanwhile had a tremendous 2010... almost. He made huge waves in his It’s Showtime debut, and looked poised to win the company’s 77kg title and start a dominant run as champion. Instead, in the year’s last show, Ouzgni was stopped by Artem Levin. In that fight, Ouzgni seemed to give up both size and strength to his opponent. Now, he’s dropping down to 70kg. He’ll have a massive size advantage here, but will it come at the expense of a too severe weight cut? Hopefully not, as Ouzgni could end up a man lost between two divisions.

4. Gago Drago vs. Artur Kyshenko. Not too much to say here, except that this match will be fun. Drago always brings the excitement, and I expect Kyshenko will match him. This one has kind of been lost in the shuffle, but it’s another excellent, very evenly matched fight that could steal the show. Along those same lines, look for exciting fights from William Diender vs, Rachid Belaini and Chahid Oulad El Hadj vs. Robin van Roosmalen.

5. The return of the 95kg title. Former champ Tyrone Spong has kept this division on ice for the last few years as he has made the move up to Heavyweight. Now, with Spong out of the picture, It’s Showtime looks to crown a new champ between Wendell Roche and Danyo Ilunga. Their inclusion of different weight classes is one of the things that makes IS unique, and it will be exciting to see how this division grows in 2011. Last year, Cosmo Alexandre’s title run brought the 77kg division to the spotlight – can either Roche or Ilunga do the same for 95?

Don’t forget, the show is tomorrow and is available for purchase at showtimefights.com for 10 euro. Start time is 2:00 p.m. Eastern.

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Hesdy Gerges and Ben Edwards to Fight for GLORY

  • Published in Glory

Gerges

Something curious has come out from GLORY's updated Heavyweight rankings, with that curiosity being that there are currently two new fighters thrown into the mix who weren't there before. Their names won't surprise you, as they've been around for a while now, and arguably they both belong with the top Heavyweights in GLORY. Those names are Hesdy Gerges and Ben Edwards. While there has been no official announcement just yet as to their signing, all of the signs seem to be pointing towards both men fighting for GLORY in the near future.

Both men appear in the updated rankings on GLORY's site, and seeing as though GLORY does not rank fighters who are not a part of their roster, it is safe to assume that they'll both be fighting for GLORY sometime in the near future. For K-1, who are currently planning their World Grand Prix events, this is considered a blow, as both men would make for solid competition and are recognizable names.

Ben Edwards first made waves internationally in 2010 when he won the K-1 World Grand Prix in Canberra event in devastating fashion, which put him right into the mix against Alistair Overeem in the Final 16. Since then he has competed in Australia as well as for SUPERKOMBAT and It's Showtime. Hesdy Gerges has been around for quite a while now, really making a name for himself in a fight against Badr Hari in 2010, when Hari delivered a kick to his face when he was down.

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GLORY Announces the Signing of Hesdy Gerges, Ben Edwards and JZ Cavalcante

  • Published in Glory

 

Glory

As we reported earlier on, GLORY had added Heavyweights Ben Edwards and Hesdy Gerges to their rankings and roster a while ago, which meant that them fighting for the organization was imminent. Well, it looks like they've finally made the official announcement and included a surprise in the mix as well of former DREAM and Strikeforce Lightweight JZ Cavalcante signing with the organization as well. JZ currently competes with World Series of Fighting, but has fought Kickboxing in the past, acquiring an 0-2 record in fights with Masato and Shootboxing's Hiroki Shishido.

Cavalcante makes for an interesting signing as he's been struggling in his MMA career since his knee surgery a while back, but a revival in the GLORY ring could be just what he ordered. The addition of Gerges and Edwards has been noted and only helps to bolster GLORY's already huge Heavyweight roster.

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Simon Rutz Believes Hesdy Gerges Will Be Released on Thursday

  • Published in Kickboxing

We've been sitting on some information about Hesdy Gerges recently, where we've spoken to a few people close to the situation and the general thought is that Hesdy Gerges will be released from prison on Thursday and should be able to compete on March 6th against Daniel Ghita. Everyone close to the situation has felt a need to not talk about it as to not possibly interfere with the court proceedings.

Well, Simon Rutz spoke with FightstarTV today and the cat is out of the bag. Simon Rutz believes that Gerges will be released after his hearing on Thursday and maintains his innocence. Rutz speaks about lots of things, including the relationship with K-1 and possible replacements for Gerges. Watch. [source]

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GLORY Suspends Jamal Ben Saddik

  • Published in Glory

On June 29th in Azerbaijan GLORY fighters Jamal Ben Saddik and Hesdy Gerges clashed in a non-GLORY ring where the outcome saw a frustrated Jamal Ben Saddik take Gerges to the mat and begin viciously attacking him as if it were in MMA rules. Of course, it wasn't, it was kickboxing rules and a "GLORY-ranked" fight. Since the incident occurred we've been hearing that Jamal Ben Saddik would be released by the organization, but there was radio silence on the issue until today.

Today GLORY released a statement announcing that Jamal Ben Saddik has been handed down a six month suspension, during which time his GLORY contract is set to expire and GLORY has opted not to renew that contract. That means that Ben Saddik is effectively out of the organization and out of action for the next few months. 

“GLORY will on occasion give permission to fighters to take part in third-party events. But when they do so, they are still bound by GLORY rules and regulations, this is part of the agreement,” said Cor Hemmers, Head of Talent Operations.

“In their contracts with GLORY, fighters agree to abide by the company’s rules and regulations. Failure to do so is a breach of their agreement with the company and leaves the fighter open to disciplinary action.

“Mr. Ben Saddik breached his agreement with GLORY and also conducted himself in a manner liable to bring the sport into disrepute. For this reason a multi-department disciplinary panel was convened, leading to today’s action against Mr. Ben Saddik.” [source]

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Hesdy Gerges Sentenced to Five Years in Prison on 2011 Cocaine Smuggling Case

  • Published in Glory

If you remember all the way back to 2011, you might remember that Hesdy Gerges was arrested for drug trafficking in connection to a case involving his half-brother. Gerges was charged with trafficking 128 kilos of cocaine (not joking). He wasn't actually caught with the drugs, his half-brother was, but he was linked to the case for potential smuggling. That case came back to bite him on Friday, when he was sentenced to five years in prison. 

Gerges made a statement on his Facebook page yesterday refuting the charges yet again.

"I was truly shocked about my conviction today. But trust me, I am NOT guilty! So I will fight this battle in court.

Meanwhile, I will keep training hard, and will be fighting my battles in the ring.

To all my loyal friends and fans: Thanks for your trust and support!!!

Osu!"

His lawyer went on Twitter to express his frustrations, with many believing that Gerges and his legal team are going to fight the charges.

"Unbelievable that Hesdy Gerges is convicted in Belgium about a file case that didn't have any evidence at the time in 2011, for any involvement with coke."

In the meantime all eyes are on GLORY to see if they publicly react to this. Considering the gravity of the charges and the penalty, if Gerges is to spend time in prison chances are he won't be able to compete. It is also a black eye for the promotion who recently had him fight for a chance to challenge for the GLORY Heavyweight Championship. We've heard word that GLORY has privately dismissed Gerges for the time being, but like they dismissed his former opponent, Jamal Ben Saddik, after Ben Saddik attacked him in the ring during a fight for another organization. Although, keep in mind that it is not official until it is announced. 

We hope that this situation is resolved quickly, for the sake of the fans and the sport. 

UPDATE: It looks like Gerges has been officially cut. Here's a statement from Jon J. Franklin to BloodyElbow.

"Hesdy Gerges has been cut from the GLORY roster and removed from its rankings. GLORY does not tolerate any type of illegal activity and will remove athletes that violate our code of conduct in or out of the ring."

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Qabala Fight Series #1 Results

  • Published in Europe

Qabala fight series put on their first event on June 29th, 2014, it seemed like a great event overall except for Jamal Ben Saddik pulling a Badr Hari and kicking and punching Hesdy Gerges while he was down. 20 seconds into the fight Ben Saddik caught Gerges leg, plowed him to the ground then proceeded to soccer kick and then try to ground and pound him, absolute stupidity and bad for the sport to have fighters that cannot control their emotions.

Glory Ranked Superfights

Hesdy Gerges Defeats Jamal Ben Saddik (Disqualification)

Albert Kraus Defeats Erkhan Varol (Decision)

Perviz Abdullayev Defeats Jiao Fukai (KO)

Mosab Amrani Defeats Lim Chi-Bin (KO)

8-Man Lightweight Tournament 

FINAL - Juri Kehl Defeats Ramal Aslanov Wins 8 Man Tournament (Decision)

SEMI-FINAL #2 - Juri Kehl Defeats Teo Mikelic (Decision)

SEMI-FINAL #1 - Ramal Aslanov Defeats Roman Mailov (Decision)

Teo Mikelic Defeats Tadas Jonkus (Decision)

Juri Kehl Defeats Telman Suleymanov (TKO)

Ramal Aslanov Defeats Guo Xianfeng (KO)

Roman Mailov Defeats Mateusz Kopiec (Decision)

 

 

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Glory 18 Rumored Super Fight Series

  • Published in Glory

Well Glory themselves have not put the super fight series on their website yet but we have heard some rumors, not to mention there are super fights listed on the page that you purchase tickets online. So lets say these are the rumored but not yet official fights for the superfight series for Nov 7th in Oklahoma.

Randy Blake had to be on the card considering Oklahoma is his home town, he will be taking on fellow American Warren Thompson. Both fighters have lost to Brian Collette in Glory, and Blake is on a 2 fight losing streak so he will be looking to get back in the win column in front of his home town fans.

There are 2 Canadians on the card Robert Thomas and Josh Jauncey. Both had their Glory debuts at Glory 16 in Denver and both fighters were thrown in with very experienced opponents. Robert Thomas was put in with #1 ranked at the time and now Middleweight champion Artem Levin. He put up a good fight and took Levin to a decision, but the skill and experience difference was obvious. This time he will take on USA's Mike Lemaire which will be much closer fight in the experience department. Josh Jauncey fought Dutch veteran Warren Stevelmans, who had over 4 times more fights than him. This was one of the best fights on the super fight series in Denver, Jauncey got dropped hard early in the first round with a big left hook but once he got up and realized he had to move Stevelmans really couldn't hit him again. It ended up being a draw, forcing the fighters to go an extra round, where we saw a younger fresher Jauncey outpoint the veteran. Now he is set to fight Korean K-1 Max veteran Jae Gil Noh, when he fought for K-1 he often went by the name "K-Max". He has fought a lot of top fighters including Albert Kraus but he usually fell short against them. He has a strong straight forward style and double the amount of fights that Jauncey does.

Now on to the Heavyweights, Hesdy Gerges vs. Benjamin Adegbuyi, I feel this has a high possibility of being fight of the night. The Romanian Adegbuyi has looked amazing lately, he absolutely dominated Daniel Sam at Glory 16 Denver and technically looked pretty much perfect. I'm very excited to see him take the step up and fight a higher ranked opponent. Hesdy Gerges is on a 3 fight win streak and has been a top 10 heavyweight for quite sometime. He is a tough fight for anyone but often gets into a habit of standing in front of people and covering up, against AdegBuyi this would not be wise considering the Romanians movement and technical combos, standing still will not work. I am very curious to see how this fight plays out and to see how Adegbuyi handles Gerge's relentless pressure and low kicks.

Rumored Super fight series

Omari Boyd vs. Ian Alexander

Josh Jauncey vs. Jae-Gil Noh

Robert Thomas vs. Mike Lemaire

Randy Blake vs. Warren Thompson

Hesdy Gerges vs. Benjamin Adegbuyi

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Weekly Poll Results

  • Published in Kickboxing

Results from last week's question: Who is K-1's greatest of all time?

42% - Peter Aerts

27% - Ernesto Hoost

11% - Semmy Schilt

9% - Andy Hug

7% - Remy Bonjasky

2% - Jerome Le Banner

2% - Ray Sefo

This week: Coming up this Saturday will be the first truly major card of 2011 as It's Showtime kicks off their year.  Headlining the event is a great top 10 battle with #8 Daniel Ghita vs. #9 Hesdy Gerges.  So, who wins?

Vote now!

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