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Lion Fight 16: Michael Thompson V. Kevin Ross Potential for Fight of the Year Candidate

  • Published in Muay Thai

As part of the agreement between Lion Fight and UFC, Lion Fight 16 will start their weekend of fights Friday, July 4th, at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. The headlining bout between “the Soul Assassin”, Kevin Ross, and Australian hard hitter, Michael “Tomahawk” Thompson, has the inaugural Super Lightweight Championship on the line as well as the potential for a Fight of the Year candidate.

The possibility lies within their mutual propensity to attack their opponent and smother them with a variety of violence, through step in and clinch knees, elbows, kicks, and hook punches. Thompson has a brutal spinning back elbow he rolls into off his jab and missed crosses, and Ross possesses great uppercut elbows and kick counters. Furthermore, neither of their offenses are negated or even necessarily compromised against their opponents’ flurries, which each will attempt to seek/pursue against the other in this bout.

Thompson side steps well as his opponents move in to issue punches of his own or angle in with an uppercut; whereas, Ross does an excellent job of turning his opponent with his movement, especially against fighters who come forward, and creates and finds openings for his strikes. At Lion Fight 15 Ross showcased the zenith of his abilities opposite fellow American Chris Mauceri, executing this approach flawlessly and using Mauceri’s persistence after Ross opened a nasty cut on his forehead in the first round to his detriment.

The trouble Thompson poses for Ross is the same he poses for everyone, and it is pressure managed by an acute fight intelligence, speed, plus heavy elbows and punches. To defeat Thompson Ross will have to replicate the movement he featured in his previous outing, and not enable Thompson to stay in front of him or stop his movement, either, with his left body to right head combination. He lost to Tetsuya Yamato at Lion Fight 11 in part due to remaining stationary, giving up elbows up the middle, and keeping his right hand down.

If something is working he also needs to stay with it and feint it to set up other offense. Yamato could not stop Ross’ left body kick and he would forget about it. Pinpointing advantages, both before and during the fight, are paramount, and in my opinion Thompson’s greatest leverage aside from his power. Ross wavers. Versus Pornsansae Sitmonchai at Caged Muay Thai 2, Thompson made a quick adjustment from throwing primarily hook punches to upper cuts and knees up the middle.

The change precipitated Thompson taking over the fight, throttling him, and then knocking him down in the second round, before tiring in the middle of the third and Sitmonchai landing a few shots to close it. This is an area Ross has the chance to exploit. Unless he is swept in the first three rounds or gets knocked out, Ross should find opportunities in the fourth and fifth when Thompson fades and maybe take a decision. I don’t see him finishing Thompson.

My expectation is Michael Thompson wins, complimentary of a fourth round KO. Ross has the temerity to endure Thompsons’ onslaught and interchange it with his own, but I don’t anticipate that it is going to be enough tomorrow night in Las Vegas.

Though the actual result might turn out to be irrelevant, for it is not what raised you to your feet. It was everything before, and there will be a lot before, perhaps enough to be subsequently called Fight of the Year.

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Ramon Dekkers Passed Away One Year Ago Today

  • Published in Kickboxing

It has been one year now since Ramon "The Diamond" Dekkers passed away while riding his bike in the Netherlands, leaving a hole in the Muay Thai and Kickboxing world that is still felt a year later. So join us in remembering Ramon Dekkers for all of the good that he did for the sports of Muay Thai and Kickboxing.

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Video: Lion Fight 18's Yodsanklai Open Work Out

  • Published in Muay Thai

Tomorrow night on AXS TV Lion Fight 18 will go down, featuring Yodsanklai Fairtex defending the Lion Fight Middleweight Championship against the UK's Salah Khalifa. Yesterday Lion Fight hosted an open workout featuring the internationally-renowned fighter and Block Boy Media was there filming it for them. Check it out below.

Don't forget that Lion Fight 18 airs tomorrow night at 10pm Eastern time on AXS TV.

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Yokkao 10 & 11 Fight Card: Two Championships at Stake

  • Published in Muay Thai

Supershowdown presents Yokkao are combining both their 10th and 11th shows into a super-card this coming Saturday from the Reebox Arena in Bolton, UK. It was announced today that both shows will feature a Yokkao World Champion crowned in the main events in the respective weights. 

Headlining Yokkao 10 will be Bad Company representative Jordan Watson as he makes only his second appearance of 2014 when he battles Frenchman Mickael Piscitello. 

Previous headliner Liam Harrison has unfortunately had to pull out of his scheduled bout with Kongsak Sitboonmee due to a shin injury he sustained in his September victory over Mehdi Zatout (link to image of injury). Veteran Tim Thomas has stepped up to replace him. 

Greg Wootton vs. Pakorn headlines the second show and was due to take place this past March, however Pakorn was unable to make the trip over to the UK due to visa issues. 

The event starts at 13:00 GMT with Junior and Pre-event Muay Thai bouts scheduled to start the evening. All bouts are to be contested under full Muay Thai rules (5x3).  

Here are the official cards.

YOKKAO 10


Jordan Watson vs. Mickael Piscitello (70kg) - Yokkao 70kg World Championship
Tim Thomas vs. Kongsak Sitboonmee (65kg)
Panicos Yusuf vs. Karim Bennoui (62kg)
Ste Long vs. Salah Khalifa (68kg)
Ben Lucas vs. Brian Totty (65kg)
Tim Nutter vs. Ste Foy (61kg)
Leif Taggart vs. Shane Farquarson (60kg)
Kai Laithwaite vs Sammy Baruca (51kg)

YOKKAO 11

Pakorn Sakyothin vs. Greg Wootton (65kg) - Yokkao 65kg World Championship
Dean James vs. Runmai Mo Tammachat (56kg)
Brad Stanton vs. Crice Boussoukou (69kg)
Dan McGowan vs. Nestor Rodriguez (54kg)
Sam Jackson vs. Luca Fonda (70kg)
Chris Whittle vs. Marcus Compton (61kg)
Josh Turnbill vs. Tommi McCormick (68kg)
Myk Estlick vs. Kieron Jessop (63.5kg)

 

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Yokkao 7 Highlight Video

  • Published in Muay Thai

Yokkao

Yokkao 7 is in the books now and for those who have been chomping at the bit to get a glimpse at the fights you are in luck as Yokkao has produced an official highlight from the event. The video showcases what was Yokkao 7 in Pattaya! So check out the video below and get yourself further prepared for Yokkao 8 in the UK which is expected to deliver big on the fireworks department with some big fights.

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Check Out Matt Lucas's Short Story Collection; 'The Boxer's Soliloquy'

  • Published in Muay Thai

Sometimes it is good to know that there are people out there as crazy as I am. When I say crazy, I mean that in the nicest way, as well. In January of last year I released my first book, The Godslayer, which was a novel about a professional fighter coping with retirement and an ever-changing landscape of his sport passing him by. The truth of the matter is, there isn't a ton of fiction out there that accurately depicts the life of a fighter, which sucks considering there are tons of biographies. 

So I was pretty excited when I found out about Matt Lucas's short story collection, The Boxer's Soliloquy. Here's somebody as crazy as I am (well, maybe not as crazy) putting his stuff out into the wild and letting everyone have at it. It is a collection of fifteen interconnected short stories showing what life is like for fighters in both America and Thailand in one of the most brutal-yet-beloved sports in muay thai. Matt brings his own personal experiences from fighting to the table to add to the authenticity. 

I recommend that you check it out via ebook (here), or if you are still one of those tactile people, buy a hard copy

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Lion Fight Goes East Coast on May 23rd

  • Published in Muay Thai

Lion Fight

This one feels like it was a long-time coming, for sure. Lion Fight has primarily been a West coast promotion, not straying far from their Las Vegas roots in the few shows that they've run over the past few years. The added interest from airing on AXS TV has made the Lion Fight brand just that much more accessible to fans across the country and Lion Fight has announced that they'll be hitting the road with their first ever event in the East Coast at Foxwoods Resort and Casino in Connecticut.

So Lion Fight 15 will be the promotion's first time on the East coast and they are bringing all of their stars out, with Cosmo Alexandre headlining the card vs. Mark Holst, as well as an undercard featuring Tiffany Van Soest, Kevin Ross and Jason Andrada. As always, this will air on AXS TV at 9pm Eastern with tickets on sale starting March 29th at http://www.foxwoods.com.

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Steven Wright's 2013 Year in Kickfighting

  • Published in Kickboxing

Our good friend Steven "The Warman" Wright has once again put together a highlight for the past year, this time it is a 25-minute epic that shows all of the great action that happened in 2013. So go ahead and relive some of the best moments from Kickboxing and Muay Thai, but be prepared to spend some time on this one, as it's as long as a television show.

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Malaipet Dominates at Lion Fight 17, Shows Power Still Left In Body Kicks, Right Hands

  • Published in News

Heading to the ring for his main event rematch with Justin Greskiewicz at Lion Fight 17 Friday night, Malaipet Sasiprapa, the decision winner of the first encounter, strode easily and confidently. There was one thing for me to wonder coming in, if he was going to knock him out this time. I am not always clear on expectations.

Perhaps it was obvious.

Malaipet didn’t knock him out, though. He came close, for damn sure. A right hand landed in the first round that crumpled Greskiewicz. The punch did its part. Greskiewicz did not. He got up.

Then the body kicks worked themselves in.

The stakes for the fight were dramatized by “the Voice” Michael Schiavello who relayed Malaipet’s comments that following two consecutive losses if he lost three he would complete the final obligation on his Lion Fight contract and retire.

He won. Number 145.

The conversation then is not about retirement. Thank god! I don’t want to write that shit. The conversation isn’t about title contention, either.

He didn’t have much for Pinca past the second round. Kevin Ross paved over him, even in the earlier rounds when he wasn’t just backing up.

The conversation is about Malaipet, about those punishing kicks, about those right hands that can still put fighters down.

He looked good Friday night. There are still a lot of guys he can beat.

Upper level-elite fighters will put him on his back foot and work his defense. That was true years ago.

Come forward, leave space under your elbows and Greskiewicz did, Malaipet will open shop.

The Victor Saravia-Andy Singh was the high watermark of Lion Fight 17, though the Rami Ibrahim-Carlos Lopez and Cyrus Washington-Brett Hlavacek bouts were entertaining. Pedro Gonzalez could continue to win as long as his opponents don’t even try to counter him up the middle.

Saravia can be a contender.

Malaipet was a contender. Now it’s fun to just watch what he has left.

Sometimes it looks like a lot. 

 

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Yokkao Runs Into Slight Setback for Yokkao 10/11

  • Published in Muay Thai

It looks like Yokkao have run into a slight hangup when it comes to their upcoming events of Yokkao 10 and 11 at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton on October 11th. As we've seen is prone to happen with international fighters making their way into another country, there are a few visa issues for some of the fighters from Thailand. The good news is that Pakorn has been allowed into the country, while his trainers were not. Along with Pakorn's trainers, both Kongsak and Rumnai and their respective corners were denied entry into the UK. 

There has been some criticism pointed at the promoters for not doing their due diligence with the visa process, but ultimately it falls upon the parties who were denied entry, considering that everyone else's visas were approved. The visa process also takes the UK three weeks to be processed and there is a specific time frame which you must use the visa within. This is also something that tends to happen in combat sports due to how involved the visa process can be for fighters traveling to other countries. 

Pakorn vs. Greg Wootton will go on as scheduled while Yokkao is working on securing new opponents for Tim Thomas and Dean James. It should also be noted that over 70% of the tickets to the event were already sold well in advance of the card being announced after the last Yokkao event in England got some of the craziest rave reviews that I've ever seen for a live fight card. Before anyone straps on their tinfoil hats, Yokkao has paid the fighters who were unable to obtain visas and has a long track record of putting on shows under crazy circumstances with them still happening (like the Reunion show where the promoter pulled out at the last minute but the event was relocated).

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