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Raul Catinas and Hesdy Gerges the Latest Fighters Confirmed for K-1 WGP Final 16

  • Published in K-1

GergesThere has yet to be anything official from K-1 yet when it comes to who is fighting in the K-1 World Grand Prix Final 16, but that is alright as we've already heard from a few fighters' camps already, talking about their inclusion. So far we know that Dzevad Poturak, Paul Slowinski, Mirko Cro Cop, Ben Edwards and probably Daniel Ghita will be fighting in the K-1 tournament. There are other names rumored, like Sergei Laschenko and Catalin Morosanu, but we've yet to see anything official to that effect yet. The latest names added to the list are that of Raul Catinas and Hesdy Gerges, confirmed by their coach, Thom Harinck.

Catinas is a great addition, as a young fighter who has been continually improving over the past few years. Catinas, a Romanian fighter, has primarily been fighting for SuperKombat for the past two years in his home of Romania. His signing hints at the possible SuperKombat partnership we've been hearing about for a while, but regardless, Catinas serves as a great addition to the tournament at age 24 riding on a five fight win streak.

The addition of Gerges helps to legitimize the tournament, as Ghita will serve as the third participant in the tournament, on top of Ghita and Laschenko, who are ranked in LiverKick.com's Top 10. Daniel Ghita is a strong #2, Laschenko is #6 and Gerges is at #10. Gerges has had a tough few years after looking incredibly strong in 2010. This doesn't mean that he can't rebound, as this tournament will be a perfect chance for him to string a few quality wins together and get himself back in the discussion as one of the elite Heavyweights.

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GFC Results -- Saki Victorious in Return

  • Published in Europe

GFC Fight Series 3 went down this afternoon in Dubai and I think that we can officially put a fork in Dubai as a venue for kickboxing after GLORY 20 and GFC 3 and consider it done. There doesn't seem to be many -- if any -- kickboxing fans there. The show went on regardless and there were some interesting results, for sure, such as Zabit Samedov winning the Heavyweight tournament with a victory over Danyo Ilunga. I'd probably prefer to see these guys meet at Light Heavyweight, but Samedov's win proves that he really is one of the better kickboxers in the world and I'd love to see him compete against top level Light Heavyweights.

The big, headline fight of the evening was Gokhan Saki against Sebastian Ciobanu that saw Saki back after a year away from the ring and scraping off that ring rust against the tough Ciobanu. Ciobanu held on for the decision but it was all Saki in his return. Results are from our friends at Kiksie.

1. Muay Thai - Super Welterweight
Saleed Nouri Long (Iran) def. Jamnian Srikam (Thailand) by TKO in round 1
2. Superfight - Middleweight
Adrian Gârlonța (Romania) def. Jashid Givechi (Iran) by KO in round 2
3. Superfight - Welterweight
Masoud Minaei (Iran) def. Jason Woodham (United Kingdom) by KO in round 1
4. Superfight - Welterweight
Brad Riddell (New Zealand) def. Maseh Nuristani (Australia) by TKO in round 1
5. Superfight - Heavyweight
Murat Aygun (Turkey) def. Tofan Pirani (Sweden) by TKO in round 1
6. Superfight - Heavyweight
Srdjan Seleš (Serbia) def. Gaétan Sautron (France) by TKO in round 3
7. Superfight - Heavyweight
Andre Meunier (Australia) def. Naoufal Bennazous (Morocco) by TKO in round 1
8. Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal 1
Zabit Samedov (Azerbaijan) def. Steve Mckinnon (Australia) by decision (unanimous)
9. Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal 2
Danyo Ilunga (Germany) def. Jafar Ahmadi (Iran) by TKO in round 2
10. Superfight - Heavyweight
Ismael Lazaar (Morocco) def. Fatih Ulusoy (Turkey) by TKO in round 1 (leg injury)
11. Superfight - Heavyweight
Gokhan Saki (Turkey) def. Sebastian Ciobanu (Romania) by decision in round 3 (unanimous)
12. Heavyweight Tournament Final
Zabit Samedov (Azerbaijan) def. Danyo Ilunga (Germany) by decision after an extra round (4th)
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Global FC 3 Immediately Updates Tournament: Badr Hari, Graham, Oborotov and Leko

  • Published in Kickboxing

GFC

Now that is some quick turnaround. Last night at about 1:30am I received a press release announcing Global FC 3, then just hours later they announced their full line-up for their tournament. It turns out that Peter Aerts is not participating in the tournament, instead he will be featured on the card, as will American Dewey Cooper. So the question arises of who is in this tournament?

Right now the names are Badr Hari, Peter Graham, Arnold Oborotov and Stefan Leko. Definitely an eclectic mix here, with Peter Graham fighting MMA of late in Bellator, Oborotov has been relatively quiet after getting his hype train derailed by Jarrell Miller and Andrei Stoica and Stefan Leko is, well, Stefan Leko. Leko's career has had a few interesting twists and turns, but it is safe to say that Stefan Leko's time at the top has come and gone.

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Peter Aerts vs. Dewey Cooper Featured on Global FC Card

  • Published in Kickboxing

GFC

The big story for many on the upcoming Global FC event is that Badr Hari will be fighting, but an interesting bit of information came out last week, with that being that Peter Aerts was set to fight Dewey Cooper on the event. I'll make this clear; I'm a huge Peter Aerts fan, always have been, always will be, and I want Peter Aerts to retire. I want Peter Aerts to enjoy his family, spend time with his children, run his gym, to live a long, healthy life.

That being said, a fight against Dewey Cooper seems about right for the time being. Dewey Cooper is an American fighter who has had a good deal of success here in the United States and abroad, but never was able to break through into that top echelon of fighters. Dewey Cooper is a fighter that can absolutely give Peter Aerts trouble, but is not a guy that I'm concerned about giving Aerts any sort of crazy concussion or really hurting Aerts. That isn't to say that Cooper can't win, because he could and he might, this is a pretty even fight. But, you know, Cooper is not Jamal Ben Saddik.

Here's a look at the rest of the card thus far.

  • Kamran Morovati vs. Darco Jeremic
  • Luke Jumeau vs. Hossein Mollamahdi
  • Gokhan Turkyilmaz vs. Voughn Donayre
  • Abbas Mollamahdi vs. Erkan Varol
  • Brian Douwes vs. Srdjan Seles
  • Singh Jaideep vs. Fatih Ulusoy
  • Peter Aerts vs. Dewey Cooper
  • Tournament: Arnold Oborotov vs. Peter Graham
  • Tournament:Badr Hari vs. Stefan Leko

 

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LEGEND 3 Set for April 5th in Milan, LEGEND 4 with Badr Hari in June

  • Published in Kickboxing

Legend

Interestingly enough, if you follow the exploits of LEGEND's Ruslan Suleymanov you'd know that he appeared at UFC 169 to have some discussions with Dana White and Lorenzo Fertita about a possible UFC event in Russia, just like he had been in discussions with GLORY officials recently and plans to again. Suleymanov has money and a love for the world of Kickboxing and MMA, so he seems steadfast on promoting more big events around the world.

According to an interview with MMAFighting's Ariel Helwani from this weekend, the next LEGEND event will be on April 5th in Milan, Italy. There have been no bouts announced yet, but we have learned that it will be a co-promotion with Carlo di Blasi's Oktagon promotion, which promotes Muay Thai in Milan. This has added to it rumors of using Giorgio Petrosyan on the card, as Di Blasi is Petrosyan's manager. This could be an explanation for the meetings with GLORY officials, as Petrosyan is signed to GLORY. The next LEGEND event afterwards will be in June, where Suleymanov expects Badr Hari to appear.

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Programming Note: Peter Graham Fights Cheick Kongo Tomorrow Night in Bellator

  • Published in Kickboxing

Graham

If you would have told me in 2006 that Peter Graham would be fighting in MMA regularly and that he'd not only do okay, but do pretty well, I'd probably not believe you. Not because Peter Graham isn't an awesome fighter, but because I just couldn't imagine the man behind the Rolling Thunder navigating the waters of wrestling and jiu-jitsu. Peter has always been known as an exciting, no-nonsense fighter who isn't afraid to pull out all of the stops.

Well, here we are in 2013 and the 38 year old Graham is making a serious go at Heavyweight MMA as he'll fight his second fight under the Bellator banner this Friday night against none other than Cheick Kongo. Kongo is himself known for being an exciting striker with a Kickboxing past, but then again, he doesn't have a KO win over Badr Hari with a Rolling Thunder, now does he? Graham's hard work and dedication to MMA have shown in his recent MMA outings, with him picking up a decision victory over Eric Prindle in his Bellator debut. He also isn't at all deterred from Kongo's size or reputation.

"I know who Cheick Kongo is but I haven't followed his career. He's been a great athlete for a long time. He's got a bit of kickboxing and wrestling skill. It'll be a good fight and I'm ready to go. I hope he doesn't underestimate me. I know he's been famous and had a big name for a while and, when it comes to MMA, I'm somewhat of a newcomer. I've come from the worst record to one of the best heavyweight win streaks there's been. I went from going 1-6 to 9 wins a row with 8 of them being KO's over some really good fighters. I want to get to the top and I'm not there yet, but I'm relentless. He needs to bring his A-game, which I'm sure he will. He's got that inner strength to keep going but I have it more than ever and I've worked harder than ever to make every performance better than the last."

Now if only we could see a Rolling Thunder in the Bellator cage, I'd be a happy, happy man.

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It's Showtime To Found New Company

  • Published in Kickboxing

It seems like It's Showtime keeps growing and expanding, with 2011 being their breakout year. They've already put on a slew of great shows, with another coming up this weekend, but that wasn't their big news that Simon Rutz alluded to yesterday. Yesterday Rutz told people that this morning he'd make a big announcement, and it turns out the big announcement is that It's Showtime is in the process of working with a Swiss Investment bank to acquire funding to create another, possibly bigger company. This company will apparently not be in the Netherlands, but Rutz says will be great for kickboxing.

We are very proud to announce that IT’S SHOWTIME is at the point of signing the biggest financial deal ever to be made in the sport of kickboxing.
A Swiss investment company (which will be revealed soon) and IT’S SHOWTIME will collaborate and because of this collaboration, a company will exist which will change the history of worldwide kickboxing.

The new company which is to be founded from this collaboration will have its home ground in another country than The Netherlands. The next months will be used to decide the strategy that this company will follow. Details about this, not only for the kickboxing scene, megadeal will later be revealed during a press conference.

The reason to announce this deal already is the fact that several journalists already knew about these sensational developments, and also we thought that the combat sports fans deserved some positive news.

This deal will have only positive consequences, not only for IT’S SHOWTIME, but also for the fighters and the fans.

For the latest news, download our free IT’S SHOWTIME app on your smartphone or visitwww.fight.nl


Kind regards,

Simon Rutz
IT'S SHOWTIME

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StillWill Returns For An Official Badr Hari Documentary

  • Published in Kickboxing

If you've been reading the site for a while you are probably well aware of the name Will "StillWill" Prescott. Will has done some of the absolute best kickboxing and Japanese MMA highlight videos that there are in the world and probably ever will be. That has led to him getting a few pretty cool gigs, the latest of which is working with Badr Hari's team to present an unfiltered documentary about Badr Hari himself. The promise is that it will look at his career and his personal life, all playing out in an episodic manner much like "The Reem" or Spong's "King of the Ring."

This is just the trailer, but it has us pretty pumped up, that's for sure. 

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Saki on Badr Hari: "Sometimes He Makes a Mistake Because he Fights Too Aggressive."

The showdown between Badr Hari and Gokhan Saki is just two days away now, with things reaching a critical mass for both fighters. At this point both men are done training and are simply wading through the final preparations before the big fight. In an interesting interview with Fighters Only, Gokhan Saki interrupted his training earlier in the week to discuss the upcoming bout with Badr Hari as well as a bunch of other issues. One of the big topics was K-1, and he says that he knows "many things" about K-1, but that he can't talk about them right now. This goes along with a lot of the rumblings we've been hearing behind the scenes.

When asked about MMA and if he is interested, his answer is simply, "Yes, of course, I'm a fighter, you know?" Saki mentioned maybe MMA, maybe Boxing, that he has been training in both, but that his "thing is K-1" and that is his main focus for right now. [source]

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Rumors Point to Badr Hari Possibly Signing with GLORY Soon

  • Published in Glory

Badr Hari

This one has been brewing since the weekend, but there have been reports of Badr Hari and GLORY coming to an agreement and Badr Hari potentially fighting on the GLORY 16 Denver card. LiverKick became aware of this rumor earlier in the week but as is our policy, unless it comes from a firsthand source or there are multiple, independent sources to verify said information, we don't run it. Since the cat is out of the bag, we are now sharing this information with you.

This comes hot off of the heels of Badr Hari being found guilty last week in his trial and sentenced to 18 months in prison. Both sides filed for immediate appeals, which means that Badr Hari is not in jail, in fact he was in attendance as a "special guest" at this past weekend's K-1 World MAX Final Four event in Azerbaijan. Badr Hari's next scheduled fight is on May 17th in Holland against Ismael Londt, making a May 3rd booking in the United States seem a bit more unlikely. There is also the fact that obtaining a work visa in the United States would be a difficult task for Badr Hari considering the recent conviction.

We've reached out to GLORY for comment on this story and multiple sources have denied this rumor. The timing of such a signing seems way off, especially with his ongoing legal issues. There is this message on his official Facebook, but understand that Badr Hari doesn't handle his social media and will at times decide that someone that he commissioned to handle his social media is no longer the "official voice of Badr Hari."

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