|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)|
Before we get to the main attraction on Saturday at the It's Showtime Fast & Furious 70MAX event, the reserve fights will be taking place on the undercard. These fights won't be televised,and we'll probably never see them but they're still important in that if one of the tournament participants get injured, the winners of these bouts will be substituted in their place. Now before we get into breaking down the fights, let's be real here. None of these fighters really deserve a reserve spot, having not done anything to warrant them.
Reserve Fight #1: William Diender vs. Andy Ristie
How William Diender received a reserve spot is pretty puzzling. Name a fighter and there's a big chance he's lost to them. Diender has lost seven of his last eight, including a dreadful six fight losing streak. As for Andy Ristie, he's a pretty decent fighter himself. Ristie still doesn't have the resume to justify a reserve spot though.
A good comparison to Andy Ristie in my opinion would be Marco Pique. Much like Pique, Ristie loves using his step up and jump knees. He's really light on his feet and can move around the ring efficiently enough to give opponents trouble. Add in his aggressive fighting style and I favor Andy Ristie in this fight. Both guys don't have great defence by any means but atleast Ristie will move away from strikes while Diender just stands in front of his opponent and absorbs shots. Ristie will leave himself open a lot but Diender doesn't have enough power to throw him off.
If I were to predict the outcome, I'd say Andy Ristie will tag Diender with knees to the body many times in the fight and finish it in the third round. That or he takes a wide decision.
Reserve Fight #2: Fatih Ozkan vs. Nordin Benmoh
Again, another head-scratcher here. Neither of these guys have done anything to warrant a reserve spot. Fatih Ozkan came up short in a competitive fight against Mosab Amrani in February while Nordin Benmoh laid out Ibrahim Chiahou in pretty spectacular fashion in the same month. Benmoh has grown quite well into a 70kg frame, while Ozkan is still on the small side and could probably fight at lower weights.
Nordin Benmoh has a decent understanding of how to fight tall, and he'll need to do it in this fight. He'll have to stay on the outside and pick his shots. He tends to explode on opponents when he has them backed up and often leaves himself open. This is where Ozkan could catch him if he isn't careful. Benmoh has sufficient power and his progression as a fighter from a few years ago has been apparent. Ozkan will have to pressure him in order to win. He can't afford to have lapses of inactivity in the fight either, as that's where Benmoh will start unleashing the full arsenal of power strikes.
My prediction? Nordin Benmoh by decision. I think he has some upside and potential that can be utilized with his frame at 70kg. In his recent fights, he's shown a better understanding of using his height and better judgement of when to unleash with power shots. Then again, I could be way off here, as Steven Wright and Dave Walsh both picked Fatih Ozkan.
To sum it up: None of these fighters really stand a chance against anyone in the tournament. No one here has done anything to warrant a reserve spot. Hate to sound like a negative nancy but that's just how I see it, and I'm sure how many others do as well.Add a comment
The countdown to It's Showtime's huge Fast and Furious tournament is on and there is a lot to be excited over. If you want to know how the media is picking it up internationally, this newspaper clipping of Chris Ngimbi training and breaking down the tournament from a Belgian newspaper.
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Mark Miller has been training his ass off since making his big comeback in May knocking out Nikolaj Falin in just under 9 seconds. It was one of those moments that was almost too perfect to sum up. Since then he has been training just as hard waiting for his next fight to come together, and this training also included making a special appearance at Rampage Jackson's training camp as a sparring partner and coach for Rampage in his upcoming fight. Regardless of the whole, ridiculous "spygate" non-scandal that has been talked about for Rampage's training camp, a lot of actual work was done and Mark helped push Rampage to his limits.
Since then he has been training using the Mass Suit, something almost out of a science fiction movie that was made to help athletes maximize their workouts by providing extra tension. This video is of Mark working out with the suit and they interview him for some background information as well. [source]
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This Sunday marks the second big K-1 event of the year, the 70kg MAX Japan tournament. Last year's tournament featured Yuichiro Nagashima and Hiroki Nakajima scoring knockouts in their quarter and semifinal bouts which culminated in a dramatic 3rd round knockout by Nagashima in the finals in a wild brawl. This year's tournament is extremely interesting because, for the first time, K-1 has placed a former K-1 MAX World Champion into the field in Albert Kraus. It is also interesting because of the new blood brought in by K-1. They have brought in young prospects in RISE Middleweight champion Takafumi Morita, Krush 70kg tournament champion Kenta and K-1 Koshien 2009 70kg champion Shintaro Matsukura. Returning from last year's tournament are 2010 Japan MAX tournament finalist Hiroki Nakajima, 2009 K-1 World MAX semifinalist Yuya Yamamoto, 2008 Japan MAX tournament winner Yasuhiro Kido and Yuji Nashiro. Despite losing tournament mainstays Ryuji and Tatsuji as well as last year's winner Yuichiro Nagashima and semifinalist Hinata, the tournament field is as strong as ever and could produce a couple new stars for K-1. I have decided to rank the fighters in this tournament by their likelihood of winning to give people who may not know much about some of the participating fighters an idea as to where each fighter stands entering the tournament.
1. Albert Kraus: I doubt there are many people who don't have Kraus as a big favorite to win this tournament and for good reason. Despite winning his K-1 MAX World championship back in 2002, Kraus has stayed an elite fighter. He is coming off a controversial loss to Yoshihiro Sato in which Sato got a bit of a gift from the judges and it would be hard to argue that Sato isn't the best fighter at 70kg in Japan at the moment. Outside of an upset loss to Batu Khasikov in March, his only other losses in the past two years have come in the quarterfinals of the K-1 MAX World tournament to eventual champion Giorgio Petrosyan. In the past two years' Final 16s, Kraus absolutely dominated last year's Japan MAX tournament's finalists Nagashima and Nakajima. Upsets can happen, but Kraus is well above the competition in this field.
2. Yuya Yamamoto: Upsets happen. Despite the loss to Shintaro Matsukura in Krush, I still feel Yuya is the #3 fighter in Japan behind Sato and Hinata. Outside of the knockdown, Yuya was outworking and outlanding Matsukura. While his aggressive, brawling style may not fare too well against the elite fighters in the division, it should hold up well in this tournament which features a few fighters who haven't shied away from slugfests. I don't doubt that I could be completely wrong in placing him this high, but I don't think Yuya's lack of defense is going to hold him back in this tournament. A quarterfinal rematch with Matsukura will be telling of Yuya's success. If he is able to impose his will, Yuya could find himself in the finals. If not, it'll be a long road ahead for the former World MAX tournament semifinalist.
3. Kenta: I can't get over how good Kenta looked in the Krush 70kg tournament. He was accurate, he beat Nakajima and Yamauchi to the punch consistently and rarely got hit. Kenta has the most momentum heading into this tournament and if he looked as good as he did in Krush, I can definitely see him making it to the finals. Kido is a difficult first round matchup and Kenta likely won't be able to put him away, but his defense should be strong enough to stay away from a knockdown or a knockout.
Yeah, I know that all you probably care about today is the Golden Glory saga but here's some other news. On October 15th in Marseilles, France, Fight Code will team up with TK2 to put on a pretty nice card.
There's two portions of the card, the Fight Code portion and the TK2 portion. The Fight Code portion will hold four of the Dragons Series Final 8 match-ups along with two super fights. The TK2 portion of the card will hold a one night, eight man tournament along with a reserve fight and three super fights.
Dragon Series Final 8:
Sudsakorn Sor Klinmee (Thailand) VS Halim Issaoui (Morocco)
Bruno Franchi (Italia) VS Norbert Balogh (Hungary
Abdallah Mabel ( France) VS Xu Yan (China)
Armen Petrosyan (Armenia) VS Jury Bessemrtny (Belarus)
Chingiz Allazov (Azerbaijan) vs. Raouf Beliouz (France)
Cedric Castagna (France) vs. Sofiane Derdega (France)
Leroy Kaestner (Netherlands) vs. Ismail Uzuner (Turkey)
Farhat Ahmedjanov (Belarus) vs. Aziz Ali Kada (France)
Yohan Lidon (France) vs. Ait Said (Netherlands)
Mohammed Medhar (Netherlands) vs. Enriko Gogokhia (Georgia)
Philippe Salmon (France) vs. Willy Borrel (France)
Wallid Haddad (France) vs. Niklas Larsen (Denmark)
Fabrice Aureng (France) vs. TBA
Overall, a very solid card from top to bottom. Very established names like Yohan Lidon and Sudsakorn are on the card with a ton of lesser known but good fighters that are waiting for their moment to get recognition. Enriko Gogokhia and Chingiz Allazov are ones to watch out for here.
The event will be broadcast on Fight Code's website, but as of right now it's not known if the TK2 portion will also be shown. I'd sure hope it would be. As per usual with kickboxing shows, don't be surprised if many match-ups get shuffled, new participants come in or fighters drop out. Many of these fighters have a very busy schedule around this time and one small injury can end one's go at this event.