The UFC is in the Netherlands for an event there and that means that the MMA media world has also made its presence shown. MMAJunkie's Mike Bohn is over in the Netherlands posted this video today where he spoke with current GLORY champion Rico Verhoeven.
While there will be some who swarm on the headlines for this that "Rico Verhoeven is going to switch to MMA," nothing is a done deal quite yet. Verhoeven speaks about the possibilities open to him, including saying that Bellator has already expressed interest in his services and that WSOF seems interested. He talks about being excited about MMA because it's so new to him still and he feels that he has a lot to offer. What he does mention is that while his current GLORY deal has ended, there is still a three month negotiation period that they are in the midst of and that he's not technically a free agent until the end of that period. Verhoeven claims that it was a good offer, although he seems to want a bit more.
Having multiple opportunities available to top athletes like Verhoeven is important because it allows for them to have leverage in contract situations. Where Verhoeven ends up is ultimately in his control right now and while he seems interested in the idea of fighting for the UFC, it's unlikely that they make a move for him just yet. Time will only tell where Verhoeven ends up, but my gut tells me that he's not done kickboxing just yet.
As for the Bellator offer? Our bud Stets reached out to Bellator and they denied any sort of offer being made to Verhoeven.
Just spoke with Bellator PR. According to them a contract was not offered to Rico Verhoeven. Verhoeven told MMAJunkie earlier today he was.
We've been preaching this for a while now; that kickboxing is one of the greatest sports in the world and that it needs a bigger following in the United States. No, it deserves a bigger following in the United States. Any sport as exciting as kickboxing deserves a wider audience and the fighters, promoters and sponsors who work hard all do so for a reason; passion. That is all that you can ask for, and that is what kickboxing delivers.
Our good friend Bloodstain Lane agrees and his latest video is just that; he urges everyone to support the kickboxing world and talks about the upcoming return of Mark Miller as well.
Yokkao, one of the bigger gear and supply companies in the world of muay thai is going to start producing a series of videos called "Yokkao Muay Thai Weapon" where some of the fighters on Yokkao's fight team will demonstrate some of the cooler muay thai techniques. The first video is of Khen Sitsongpeenong demonstrating a flying elbow strike. Fans can look for more videos in the coming weeks and if they have suggestions for techniques to be featured they can tweet @YokkaoBoxing (or us @LiverKickdotcom) with what they want to see and Yokkao will do their best to make it happen.
Chalk this up as some strange news, but professional basketball player Darko Milicic has decided that basketball just isn't for him, but that professional kickboxing is. The Serbian was a second draft pick in his rookie year and has since played on the Detroit Pistons, Orlando Magic, Memphis Grizzlies, New York Knicks, Minnesota Timberwolves and the Boston Celtics before retiring in 2012. It seems like a bit of an odd transition to go from the NBA to professional kickboxing, but apparently it is a real thing.
Now, before you get excited and start talking about GLORY, K-1, SuperKombat or Enfusion, he's apparently inked a deal with WAKO Pro and will announce his first kickboxing fight on Wednesday. [source]
2010 was a rough year for K-1 MAX. Three of the division's very top stars fought their (for now) last MAX fights in 2009, including Masato, the man MAX had been built around from the start. Shows were planned, then canceled. Only two qualifying Grand Prixs were held, and one of those 2 never aired. Half of the Final 16 fights were shoved onto the 63kg GP finals almost as an afterthought, and at one time, there were rumors that the 2010 MAX Grand Prix might not even happen. Fans of MAX were looking at the year as somewhat of a disaster.
That changed on October 3. Amidst all this chaos and confusion, the MAX Final 16 event in Seoul was a grand slam of an event - an all around fantastic card with every fight delivering. The next day, no one was talking about how K-1 MAX was struggling. Instead, they were talking about what a show it was. And they were talking about one fight.
That fight is your 2010 LiverKick.com Fans' Fight of the Year - "Iron" Mike Zambidis vs. Chahid Oulad El Hadj.
Coming into the event, this was a fight that on paper looked like it could be a good one. Both Zambidis and Chahid are exciting fighters who like to push the pace and have turned in plenty of fun bouts. But they are also two men whose presence in the Final 16 was questionable, as neither had claimed a significant K-1 win in some time. From the moment the two men meet in center ring for the staredown, any concerns about them not belonging flew out the window. Because right from the opening, you can tell this is going to be something special. Both men looked hungry, out for redemption, and just plain pissed off. They looked ready to tear into each other. And that's exactly what they did.
For four epic rounds, Zambidis and Chahid engaged in an all out war. By the end of the 3rd, the announcers are all on their feet waiting for the judges' decision. By the end of the 4th, fans are already writing their friends telling them what they just saw. And by the next morning, all the focus was on this classic.
Watching it now, I'm reminded of another all-time K-1 great contest - Ray Sefo vs. Mark Hunt (and if you've never seen that, watch it, seriously, now). Like Sefo vs. Hunt, this is a fight that doesn't need any backstory. It's a moment that stands on its own, where even if you've never heard of either man, the combination of heart, determination, technique, and aggression they show is enough to grab you. At a time in combat sports where the UFC is the clear top dog, and where Dana White's love of wild stand-up brawling has come to define how many fans view stand-up action, this fight is a definitive example of what stand-up can be. Yes it's a brawl, but it's also two supremely skilled fighters never losing track of the technique needed to fight at this level. It's a fight every fan of Griffin vs. Bonnar, Garcia vs. The Korean Zombie, or countless other recent fights really owes it to themselves to watch.
Chances are good you've already seen this fight, probably more than once. But as we say our final good-byes to 2010, do yourself a favor and watch it once more. You'll thank yourself later.
A big thanks to all our fans who voted in this poll. In the end, Zambidis vs. Chahid was the clear winner, drawing 34% of the vote. #2 and #3 were only separated by a handful of votes, with the sentimental favorite Peter Aerts vs. Semmy Schilt at #2, and the battle of the new guard in Gokhan Saki vs. Daniel Ghita at #3. For full results, click here, and don't forget to vote on our new polls every week here at LiverKick.com.
On May 24th in Xinyang Stadium Yokkao will present Yokkao 9, a card that promises to bring some of the best Kickboxing and Muay Thai to China. Pakorn was forced to pull out due to illness, but has been replaced by Phiaphaeng Walchart and, if you'll notice, there are a lot of K-1 rules bouts on this card. That has to do more with the Thailand vs. China theme and how Chinese fighters perform better under Kickboxing rules.
The main bout is Sudsakorn vs. Yi Long in a bout billed as Muay Thai vs. Gung Fu.
*** YOKKAO 9 Fight Card ***
Saturday 24th May - Xinyang Stadium (China)
Sudsakorn Sor Klinmee (Thailand) vs Yi Long (China)
-72kg K-1 rules 3x3
N'Diaye Carl (France) vs Fang Bian (China)
-80kg K-1 rules 3x3
Imwiset Pornnarai (Thailand) vs Qiu Jianliang (China)
-67kg Muay Thai Full Rules 3x3
Calogero Palmeri (Italy) vs Yang Zhou (China)
-67kg K-1 rules 3x3
Ekapop Sor Klinmee (Thailand) vs Nu Er La (China)
-80kg K-1 rules 3x3
Runmai Mo Tammachat (Thailand) vs Ji Wenhao (China)
-58kg Muay Thai Full Rules 3x3
Igor Klimovich (Belarus) vs Li Ning (China)
-60kg K-1 rules 3x3
Kamel Meztani (France) Guo Xi Chuang (China)
-74kg K-1 rules 3x3
Philaphaeng Walchart (Thailand) vs Deng Ze Qi (China) ***Pakorn injured
-65kg Muay Thai Full Rules 3x3
Gustavo Ferreira De Oliveira Mendes (Brazil) vs Zhou Tao (China)
FFC has been on a roll for the past few years and if you are wondering why FFC 7 is happening now, sequentially quite out of order, the story is pretty cool. FFC had initially planned an event in Sarajevo but was forced to cancel it. They promised to return to hold FFC 7 and they did just that this weekend featuring a solid card headlined by Heavyweight standouts Dzevad Poturak and Frank Munoz. The once-retired Poturak proved himself still at the top of his game against the very tough Munoz, edging him out for a decision victory in the main event.
As always, FFC events are both kickboxing and MMA events, so we've included both results.
FFC 7 Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina,March 13 2015, Skenderija HallMMAVladislav Genov def. Gergo Munczeberg - SUB (armbar), round 1 (2:16)Darko Stošić def. Dyonisios Papadopoulos - KO (ground n' pound), round 1 (0:59)Vladimir Prodanović def. Ivan Skoko – KO (ground n' pound), round 1 (1:55)Adam Borics def. Marko Burušić – Unanimous decisionLaszlo Senyei def. Dawid Defort - KO (ground n' pound), round 3 (4:34)Tomislav Spahović def. Kamen Georgiev - Unanimus decisionKBAntonio Plazibat def. Bojan Džepina - KO, round 3 (2:14)Strahinja Denić def. Dženan Poturak - KO (injury), round 1 (5:00)Denis Marjanović def. Boban Krušić - KO, round 2 (5:00)Igor Emkić def. Nikita Chub - Unanimous decision, after round 4Tomislav Čikotić def. Elmir Mehić - Unanimous decision, after round 4Dževad Poturak vs. Frank Munoz - Unanimous decision
Leave it to Artur Kyshenko to keep busy, right? Yesterday Kyshenko fought at the KOK WGP 2014 event in Gdansk against Radoslaw Paczuski in a night that also saw Sergei Laschenko take a Heavyweight tournament. Go ahead and check out Kyshenko's performance and let us know what you thought. Kyshenko has been hit-or-miss at times and jumped around weight classes.
We've been talking about RENA a bit the past few days, the 2009 and 2010 SHOOTBOXING Girls S-Cup Champion, but for a lot of people out there, they might not be as familiar with SHOOTBOXING, never mind Girls SHOOTBOXING. Leave it to one of our favorite readers, Jill, to toss together an awesome highlight video where you can see RENA's awesome use of push kicks, mid kicks and great judo throws that put her on top of the SHOOTBOXING mountain. [source]