|Heavyweight (Per 10/13)|
|1.||Semmy Schilt (?)|
|7.||Mirko Cro Cop|
|Light HW (per 10/13)|
|Middleweight (per 11/25)|
|Welterweight (per 10/13)|
|70kg (Per 11/25)|
|2.||Robin van Roosmalen|
|65kg (per 10/6)|
This one comes as a surprise, while the departure of names like Badr Hari, Tyrone Spong and Gokhan Saki are not a surprise, with them the writing was on the wall for quite a while. Kyotaro is the latest name to come up on a short list of K-1 Heavyweights who have decided to move on to another combat sport, this time Boxing. Boxing is experiencing an upswing of popularity in Japan over the past few years and it is hard to argue against it being the healthiest of the combat sports there.
News came out over the last few hours that K-1 Heavyweight Champion Kyotaro has decided to leave Kickboxing for Boxing and has returned his K-1 Heavyweight Championship. It is not surprising to see Kyotaro looking to compete elsewhere, as he has tried his hand at professional wrestling this year, much like Yuichiro "Jienotsu" Nagashima, but not seen the same level of success. Outside of his interesting hair choices, Kyotaro does not have the same charisma that a Nagashima has, and while that is not valued over all in Japanese professional wrestling, the popularity of wrestlers like Keiji Mutoh, Masahiro Chono, Shin'ya Hashimoto, Kenta Kobashi and Toshiaki Kawada speaks against that point.
Kyotaro giving up the K-1 Heavyweight Championship helps to illustrate just how confusing that championship really is and will probably be mis-analyzed by various media outlets who choose to cover his defection. The K-1 Heavyweight Championship is ornamental at best, a title implemented in 2007 when K-1 was looking to possibly move towards a model that Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing utilizes of having Champions who defend their titles in single bouts. They were looking for something different from the tried-and-true method of a yearly tournament to crown the best in the world, instead for individual championships and to give them meaning. Badr Hari was a champion that at the time looked hand-selected; known for his hot temper in and out of the ring and his larger-than-life personality, K-1 [rightfully] predicted he would become a huge star. Hari fought Yusuke Fujimoto for the vacant championship. Fujimoto defeated Musashi for the right to fight for the title, but neither man was going to pose much of a challenge to Hari, nor were either men the very top of the promotion.
Hari defended that title once over the course of a year and a half before being stripped of the title for stomping on a downed Remy Bonjasky in the K-1 World Grand Prix Finals. The one defense was against Glaube Feitosa, well into the waning years of Feitosa's career. Kyotaro faced a more legitimate set-up of a one-night tournament featuring Melvin Manhoef, Tyrone Spong and Gokhan Saki where Kyotaro was a last-minute replacement and walked away with the title. The comedy of the situation is, since winning that title Kyotaro has gone 3-4, with non-tournament, non-title losses to Tyrone Spong and Gegard Mousasi. If that title was supposed to be taken seriously, any non-tournament fight for Kyotaro should feature that title, instead he defended it once against Peter Aerts.
The point being made here is while the loss of Kyotaro is a moderately difficult loss, as is the Heavyweight Championship, both were confusing to many fans and will not be entirely missed. The Championship made no sense whatsoever and Kyotaro showed moments of brilliance but more often than not demonstrated how to defend strikes while not returning fire. [source]Add a comment
Fight Code is again co-promoting with another kickboxing organization this weekend on October 22nd. Last week saw them in Marseilles, France co-promoting with TK2 for their Dragons Final 8. This weekend will be the Rhinos Final 8 featuring heavyweights.
Some respectable talent has been brought in for single fights with Sergio Wielzen, Maxim Smirnov, Keiji Ozaki and Aziz Kallah among names. They've reached from all different regions to grab up talent for the card. Hopefully it's something we'll see more of in the future.
The Rhinos Final 8 tournament features eight heavyweight fighters that have advanced to the Final 8 from previous Fight Code Rhinos qualification fights. Vitali Akhramenko and Freddy Kemayo have had strong performances so far in Fight Code and will probably continue that on Saturday. The rest of the tournament doesn't quite stack up to those two.
Sergio Wielzen returns for a W5 title fight at 60kg against Russian fighter Ruslan Tozliyan. It's Wielzen's first real fight since March when he lost his It's Showtime 61MAX title to Karim Bennoui. He was scheduled to fight at an It's Showtime Japan event last month but the bout was turned into an exhibition match because one fighter missed weight. It should be a good fight as Russia is producing some very good kickboxers these days like Maxim Smirnov who will fight against fellow Russian Maxim Shalnev on the card. Smirnov, after this fight is scheduled to fight Dzhabar Askerov at the Tatneft Cup 2011 Finals. Keiji Ozaki has been brought in to face Roman Mailov on the Fight Code portion of the card. Ozaki recently lost to Thomas Adamandopoulos at Krush.12 and will look to get back on track. It won't be an easy fight at all, as Mailov has been running through competition lately in Russia and is another one of the up and coming fighters coming out of the region.
If last weekend's Fight Code event is any indication, then the W5 portion of the card probably won't be shown on Fight Code's stream. Videos of W5 events seem to get out pretty quickly though, so we'll keep our readers posted on those. You can catch the stream on Saturday at www.livefightcode.tv. All you have to do is register and the stream is free to watch. Here's the full fight card below:
Fight Code Superfights:
Roman Mailov (Ukraine) - Keiji Ozaki (Japan), 65 kg
Edgar Arutyunyan (Ukraine) - Imro Main (Holland), 75 kg
Rhinos Final 8 Fight Code 3x3 105 kg:
Freddy Kemayo (France) - Mladen Kujundzic (Croatia)
Vitali Akhramenko (Belarus) - Zamig Atakishiyev (Azerbaijan)
Yüksel Ayadin (Turkey) - Thomas Kohut (Slovakia)
Pacome Assi (France) - Peter Vondracek (Czech Republic)
W5 60kg World Title Fight 5x3:
Ruslan Tozliyan (Russia) - Sergio Wielzen (The Netherlands)
W5 Super Fights 3x3:
Maxim Smirnov (Russia) - Max Shalnev (Russia), 71 kg
Yuri Zhukovski (Belarus) - Valdrin Vatnikaj (Albania), 65 kg
Goran Radonjic (Montenegro) - Nadir Hajiyev (Russia), 96
Alim Nabiev (Ukraine) - Aziz Callah (The Netherlands), 71 kg
Evgeny Khil (Russia) - Vitali Lisnyak (Ukraine), 60 kgAdd a comment
Another week and another episode of Warman's Kickfighting show where I join Steven Wright to discuss the goings on of the worlds of kickboxing and muay thai. This week we look at the results from this past weekend's Fight Code event as well as the fallout from it, including Fight Code organizing two rematches from the show and the one disqualification being overturned. We also go into depth on SuperKombat's last GP event which did not feature the same level of talent as per the last few shows but still delivered on a few different levels, as well as their business model going forward and why it is vital for them to get their act together.
And of course, you can't talk about the last week in the Kickboxing world without talking about K-1. This means talk about the show being cancelled, possibly postponed and the news finally being released that there are many potential buyers for the company but Master Ishii seems to be the lone force holding the company back. As always, the show can be downloaded on iTunes (search: LordGaul) or on the PodBean site. As always, I'm going to embed it, but there does seem to be a timeout with these files, so if it isn't working make sure to go and download it yourself.
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Shooto and Shootboxing have announced two more cross-promotional fights for their Shoot the Shooto/Shooto the Shoot 2011 co-promotion and they are scheduled to be MMA fights for the November 5th Shooto the Shoot portion of the event.
First, Shooto legend Rumina "Moon Wolf" Sato is set to take on Team Souwer's Nico Verresen. Veressen is a Muay Thai fighter from Belgium with a record of 40-14-3 (12 KO) and has only fought in one MMA fight which was back in February where he won by split decision. Sato has spent his entire career in Shooto, compiling a 24-15-2 against a who's who of Shooto fighters at lower weights. In a way, Sato embodies the essence of Shooto, as he never captured a title in the promotion and was unsuccessful in each of his attempts at the elite of the 155, 145 and 135lb weight classes, losing to the likes of Caol Uno, Takanori Gomi, Joachim Hansen, Alexandre Nogueira, Gilbert Melendez, Akitoshi Tamura, "Lion" Takeshi Inoue, Hatsu Hioki, and most recently, Masakatsu Ueda. Despite being on the downturn of his career, Sato should be able to get this to the ground easily and submit the Muay Thai fighter. That being said, Sato has a propensity to entertain and could turn this into a striking contest.
The other fight announced for the event is Shooto 115lb title challenger Junji "Sarumaru" Ito taking on Shootboxing's Kazuyuki Fushimi. Ito is coming off of a loss to current champion Junji Ikoma in a fight for the vacant 115lb title. Fushimi has gone 5-2 since June 2010, making it to the finals of the Shootboxing 55kg Young Caeser's Tournament, but losing to Ryuya Kusakabe. He was set to fight Shooto 123lb champion Yasuhiro Urushitani in February, but Urushitani pulled out and Fushimi ended up losing to Koya Shimada. He is currently on a 2-fight win streak. This should be a fun fight as Ito is primarily a striker and although it may be in his best interest to get it to the ground, I doubt he will do so. Ito joins Shooting Gym Yokohama teammates "Lion" Takeshi Inoue and "Wicky" Akiyo Nishiura as participants in the cross-promotional event, but is the first to do so in MMA.
A while back, RISE announced it would be holding a heavyweight tournament with Stefan Leko and Mighty Mo representing K-1. Fabiano Cyclone (Fabiano Aoki) and Hiromi Amada won their way into the tournament with wins back in July and Makoto Uehara was placed in the tournament as the RISE Heavyweight champion. RISE announced two more fight-in spots, which were won by Singh "Heart" Jaideep and Raoumaru back in September and RISE announced the final participant to be K-1 veteran and 2nd place at the 9th World Karate Championships Jan Soukup. The tournament will take place at RISE 85 on November 23rd which is the same event that Rena and Erika Kamimura face off to become the first "Queen of RISE" as well as a fight for the vacant 55kg Bantamweight title between Yuta Kubo's brother KENJI and #1 ranked Dyki. As far as I know it is a one night tournament and RISE will announce the quarterfinal matchups on Tuesday the 25th.Add a comment
Liam Harrison and Mohammed Khamal fought on October 8th in Padova, Italy at the MuayThai Premier League's second event. The video has finally gotten out and we can now see if the whole judging controversy was true or not. Khamal won a disputed decision. Watch the video below and be the judge.Add a comment