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Translation of Simon Rutz's Video Address

If you have been keeping up with the lastest drama behind It's Showtime and the Netherlands you know that there is a lot going on right now. There is a law in the Netherlands, BIBOB, that aims to prevent criminal activity by limiting businesses with known criminal connections and forcing them to jump through hoops. Over the past few years It's Showtime has been linked (we are making no claims to authenticity here) with the likes of the Hell's Angels, who purchase VIP tables and make appearances at events. They also have sponsored It's Showtime after parties within the Netherlands that get promoted as "official." These events caught the eye of the mayor of Amsterdam, who last year turned his eye towards Kickboxing and MMA events as being connected with organized crime and the rest is history.

Simon Rutz put together a video statement that aired at the weigh-ins for the media and then aired after the prelims aired on the stream, and for us who do not speak Dutch, we were sort of left in the dark. Thankfully, we have some fantastic readers out there. This translation was provided by Sebastiaan Tauran, with some corrections done as needed by us.

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Badr Hari Drops Gokhan Saki Three Times in Impressive Performance at It's Showtime 55

Saki/BadrThis is the fight that everyone has been anxiously awaiting. Badr Hari fought a grand total of once last year, and it wasn’t much of a fight. Since then he has decided to look to the world of Heavyweight Boxing and this could be his last fight in Kickboxing. Saki has had similar rumors surrounding him, but he wants to Kickbox, it is his passion.

The atmosphere is absolutely electric as Saki comes out to an energetic entrance, getting everyone on their feet, and then Badr Hari comes out through the crowd again and the crowd are all on their feet, on their chairs, rushing the guard rail. Another event where they have to tell fans to go back to their seats so they can start the fight.

Saki looks to come in quick with a low kick while Hari starting off slow with Saki moving in and out. Saki actually lands an unintentional takedown on Hari and both men are just measuring each other now. Badr is looking for a home run with his hands while Saki is looking to wait it out and pick his shots. Saki pushes in and Hari lands a knee, then a HUGE uppercut lands from Hari! Saki is down! Saki gets up! Saki goes for a Leko Buster but misses. Hari with a right hand! Saki goes down! Saki looking to slow the fight down but a right uppercut form Badr puts Saki down for a third and final time!

Amazing performance by Badr Hari, looking focused and controlled. This is the Badr Hari that has won the world over and the Badr Hari that we don’t want to see leaving kickboxing.

Badr Hari wins via TKO in R1.

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Daniel Ghita Flattens Hesdy Gerges to Win It's Showtime Heavyweight Title

GhitaA huge rematch from one of the best Heavyweight bouts from last year, and this time Hesdy Gerges will be defending his It’s Showtime Heavyweight Championship against Daniel Ghita. This is one of the better match ups currently at Heavyweight between two fighters who have been on the way up, both with some hiccups as hey move up the ranks. The last fight was a tough three-round bout, this time with five rounds it will be interesting to see what they come up with.

Gerges starts off trying to keep the distance with a body kick while keeping Ghita’s leg kicks in check, but that can’t last that long. Both men in tremendous shape. Ghita has Gerges in the corenr and lands a huge right that wobbles Gerges, but Gerges somehow recovers! They have been in the same corner the whole round, both men being very patient and just looking for the right opening. Ghita finally finding some luck with the leg kick and is following up with his hands.

Out of nowhere, Daniel Ghita lands an absolutely incredible left hook that puts Gerges down and OUT! Ghita was in incredible shape and has vastly improved his hands and his patience. Masterful performance by Ghita.

Daniel Ghita wins R1 via KO.

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Robin van Roosmalen Wins Close Decision over Murat Direcki at It's Showtime 55

RVRMurat Direcki is the former It’s Showtime 70kg MAX Champion and has had a very good career, picking up some great wins but struggling against some of the elites. RvR has been on fire, winning the It’s Showtime Fast & Furious MAX tournament and announcing himself to the world. Robin is looking to keep his momentum going in 2012 with a big win over Direcki.

Both men tentative to engage, feeling each other out while Direcki keeps Robin at a safe distance with push kicks, but Robin follows up with a beautiful, Gokhan Saki-like combination with his hands and low kicks. Robin rushes in and lands a monster left hook and then swarms Direcki who is able to recover and get some distance. Direcki looks to keep Robin at a distance with some kicks and jabs to finish out the round. Great first round, nice and close with Direcki controlling the pace but Robin having moments of brilliance.

The second round sees Direcki continuing to keep Robin at a distance while Robin looking to get on the inside and land some great combos. Both men are just exchanging looking for an opening, with Direcki throwing in more volume and using his push kick beautifully. Robin is landing the stronger shots and stumbles Direcki with a massive leg kick, he is able to recover but the ref calls time to have a doctor treat Direcki’s cut. I’m glad that I don’t have to score this round or fight. Wow.

Third round sees Direcki still using the push kicks and his jab to control the distance while Robin backs him up looking to land big combinations. Direcki probably scoring more, but weaker shots compared to Robin’s. Robin puts together a combination and finally scores with a right that sends Murat into the ropes, but Direcki recovers and in a clinch there is a clash of heads that leads to a cut on Direcki’s other eye. Robin finally having some luck with combinations ending by coming up the middle. He is finally scoring some good shots, but Direcki is able to hold on.

We go to the score cards and the judges 4-1 give it to Robin van Roosmalen. Murat Direcki grabs the mic and announces his retirement, but after a performance like that, one would hope not.

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