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Glory 23: who will win?

  • Published in Glory

August 7th will see one of the most anticipated events in this year’s kickboxing calendar, as a number of Heavyweight, Welterweight and Middleweight fighters do battle in Glory 23. The fight will be held in Las Vegas, which is considered the fight capital, and marks the very first time that the Glory World Series has visited this top location. There is no question that fans are eagerly anticipating this bout, with fights including Dustin Jacoby vs. Ariel Sepulveda and Xavier Vigney vs. Daniel Sam, but the main event is definitely the Welterweight clash between Nieky Holzken and Raymond Daniels.

This amounts to a title fight, and many consider Holzken the best Welterweight kickboxer – further adding to the excitement. His Glory record is seriously impressive: standing at 8 wins and no losses – with 7 KO’s amongst these. By comparison, Daniels has a record of 4 wins, two drawn bouts and no losses – which certainly do not count as poor stats. Nonetheless, it is not exactly surprising that most bookies have Holzken as the hot favourite – with odds of 1/6 showing just how highly rated he is. So you should just be putting your money on Holzken then? Well, not necessarily, with 7/2 odds for Daniels indicating that the bookies know he has a real chance.

Daniels has become noted for a kickboxing style that is really exciting (as anyone who has seen him live or watched his highlight reel can attest to), and this unpredictability could be his strongest asset against a superior opponent. However, there is no arguing with the stats which show that Holzken has landed 42 percent of strikes in previous bouts, compared with 16 percent for Daniels (the former’s punch and kick percentages are similarly superior). This is why the US bookmakers agree with the UK ones, making Holzken the odds-on favourite at -600 compared with Daniels at 350. Of course, Daniels has a lot less fights under his belt, but it is also important to bear in mind that one of Daniels’ two previous Glory defeats was inflicted by Holzken, in Glory 19, suggesting he has the edge on his opponent.

Whatever the result though, Glory 23 seems sure to be a humdinger of a fight, but if you can’t wait until August for your fix, why not try one of the fighting slots at like Fighting Fish. This five-reel slot has 30 paylines and a fishy flavour, with different kinds of fish vying to be crowned Deep Sea Boxing Champion – making it a pretty good casino option for kickboxing fans. Furthermore, it also offers a 5000-coin maximum jackpot, which makes it ideal for everyone.




Watch the GLORY 23 Weigh-ins Tonight at 7pm Eastern

  • Published in Glory

Tonight at 7pm Eastern watch as the combatants from GLORY 23 take the scales in anticipation of tomorrow night's GLORY 23 live at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas. The weigh-ins will be streamed live via their YouTube channel which you can watch here on LiverKick.


Nieky Holzken Prepared for GLORY 23 and Raymond Daniels

  • Published in Glory

If you've watched kickboxing for any length of time, you've undoubtedly heard the name Nieky Holzken.  With in mind, it would be pretty condescending of me to tell you that he's fast, strong, extremely agile or that his boxing skills are absolutely sick.  Those in the know are also well aware that he's Glory's former welterweight champion (2013) and he's been back with a vengeance to claim the title again. Friday, August 8th, he'll have that opportunity as he is poised to face Raymond "The Human Highlight Reel" Daniels at Glory 23 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  What you may not know is that at 31 years of age Holzken sees the value of regaining and maintaining champion status, but also that there is life beyond the ring and that it's probably a good idea to have other plans for his future.   Holzken understands the value of family, friends and simply living.  Following open workouts I had an opportunity to speak to Holzken about life, his philosophy and the challenge he faces as he prepares to meet Raymond Daniels at Glory 23.  

With a record of 93-11 and 54 of his wins by KO, a dance with Holzken is by no means a walk in the park for anyone.  Holzken additionally see a few mire years ahead of him in the ring.  When it's all said and done Holzken hopes to open his own gym and continue to inspire participants in the sport as well as to be a positive role model for children. But again, that's later, possibly even five years down the line.  

Holzken 's match against Daniels came about in unexpected fashion following Valtellini's relinquishment of the  title. It had long been anticipated within the fight community that an eventual face off would occur between he and Valtellini and his dominance either would or would not be established based on the outcome of that bout.  Unforseen circumstances,  however, changed the hands of fate and brought him face to face with an opponent over whom he ha a recent win.  If you recall, Holzken faced Daniels in February of this year at Glory 19 in a bout that finished with a TO victory for him. Don't get it twisted though as Holzken has also KO'd Valtellini in the past.  By his own admission, things just got real as Friday night it's not just for another win on his record, it's for the thing he's worked his life for, a chance to be crowned champion albeit for a second time.  Once in his hands again, Holzken has every intention of riding it until the wheels fall off. He wants his belt back!   In preparation for this match-up, Holzken states he has continued to improve upon his boxing skills.   Since he last faced Daniels he has actually had three boxing matches all of which he won.  Holzken also reports improvement in his hand speed.  When asked what he though was his best skill, Holzken sees himself as a well rounded fighter while he views Daniels' best skills as kicking, jumping around and running. Holzken also isn't particularly impressed by Daniels' boxing skills.

If there was ever a fight that he has regrets about, Holzken cites his bout with Artur Kyshenko in, which suffered a decision loss following an accidental eye poke that left him unable to see clearly for the majority of the match.  

No matter the outcome of Friday's match, Holzken is definitely excited to be fighting, for the opportunity to have his family in Las Vegas to support him, for the support of his fans and definitely for the welterweight championship belt to be within his grasp. When asked what he's see for Friday, he simply stated, "action!" He feels that he has trained hard, he's ready and that his time has come again.   


Redemption Only Comes For One in GLORY 34's Main Event

  • Published in Glory

This weekend at GLORY 34 Murthel Groenhart will once again get his chance against long-reigning GLORY Welterweight Champion Nieky Holzken. Holzken has long-been considered unbeatable at this weight class. After toiling for years without recognition, Holzken is finally being recognized the world over for his immense talents. No other fighters in kickboxing is able to piece together the combinations that Holzken can assemble, from ballistic shots at different levels and angles to rapid-fire assaults on an opponent's midsection until he is forced to take a knee.

Yet, Murthel Groenhart was able to punch through Holzken's tight defenses and his punch-heavy output in their last meeting. Just forty seconds into the second round Murthel found a combination that worked against Holzken. In fact, he landed a kick to the body that put Holzken off-balance; a rare weakness shown from the champion in front of a very friendly crowd for him. When all was said-and-done, many felt that Groenhart had been done a disservice by the judges for Holzken getting the nod.

The truth was that it was an incredibly close fight, regardless of who you viewed the winner. But both men walked away different. Groenhart walked away feeling robbed, while Holzken walked away looking mortal. Since that loss Groenhart has gone 5-2, losing a decision to Cedric Doumbe in GLORY, then losing to Artur Kyshenko in Kunlun Fight in China. Holzken defeated Yoann Kongolo since then and fought in boxing to not only keep himself busy, but to keep his flawless boxing record in-tact.

But things are different.

Holzken was once the untouchable iron man of the division, but Groenhart has shown what it takes to hurt Holzken and keep him from falling into his pattern of destruction. Groenhart himself was a bit of a lost fighter for many years. The talented, powerful and explosive fighter jumped around divisions -- once winning the K-1 World MAX tournament at 70kg and having fought up in weight many, many times. GLORY cementing the 76kg weight class has been beneficial to both Holzken and Groenhart, who finally have a home to showcase their skills. 

It took another win in a contender tournament for Groenhart to get what he deserved in a rematch, but now it's time for him to show that the last fight with Holzken wasn't a fluke, but instead it was the evolution of the once-wild brawler into a composed fighter. For Holzken this is a chance to show that he's unstoppable and the king of this division, worthy of the praise and attention that he receives in the Netherlands as a national hero. 

So while everyone is hyped up for Badr Hari appearing in the GLORY ring against Rico Verhoeven, perhaps the best and biggest fight of the year will be happening in Denver, Colorado on October 21st between two of the best kickboxers in the world.


Cedric Doumbe vs. Nieky Holzken II Headlines GLORY 42

  • Published in Glory

On Saturday, June 10th GLORY returns to Paris with GLORY 42 Paris headlined by GLORY Welterweight Champion Cedric Doumbe defending against former champion Nieky Holzken. Holzken, who at a time looked unstoppable, fell to Doumbe at GLORY: Collision in December and the social media exchanges have been heated ever since. Only two other fights are announced, including Jimmy Vienot against Casey Greene and Yoann Kongolo against Antoine Pinto.

GLORY 42 Paris

Welterweight Title Headline Bout: Cédric Doumbé vs. Nieky Holzken

Lightweight Tournament Final Bout: Winner of Bout A vs. Winner of Bout B

Lightweight Tournament Semifinal Bout B: TBA vs. TBA

Lightweight Tournament Semifinal Bout A: TBA vs. TBA

GLORY 42 SuperFight Series

Welterweight Headline Bout: Yoann Kongolo vs. Antoine Pinto

Welterweight Bout: Jimmy Vienot vs. Casey Greene

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