|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)|
Alistair Overeem's dismissal from the UFC has been a topic for debate over the past week, as has the more recent release of his Golden Glory teammates Marloes Coenen, Valentijn Overeem and Jon Olav Einemo. This leaves the lone Golden Glory contracted fighter of Sergei Kharitonov who will fight on September 10th in the Strikeforce Heavyweight GP. There has been widespread speculation over what has happened between Zuffa and Golden Glory, with both sides making claims of the other. Zuffa claims Golden Glory was trying to have their fighters paid through Golden Glory and Zuffa claims they only pay the fighters directly, the fighters can pay their management on the side. Marloes has been very public about this, saying that she didn't need Zuffa's "protection" and that she prefers her camp be paid directly due to tax reasons in Europe.
This interview with Inside MMA covers a lot of this, with Overeem discussing his injuries and the fact that Zuffa attempted to push their standard, exclusive contract upon him and that he was not pleased with that. Overeem is clear that he still wants to fight for K-1.
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What is usually a void of kickboxing coverage on a UFC weekend turned out a rather interesting interview with Tyrone Spong. Tyrone Spong discusses the future of his career, the potential of a K-1 Final 16 in October in China, his participation in it and he talks about why he thinks kickboxing wasn't as huge in the United States as it could be and how in the future it could be.
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Swedish promotion Rumble of the Kings has a huge card set for November 26 in Stockholm, Sweden. So far they've got three pretty big name match-ups set and they're all ones that everyone can look forward to.
First, in a huge fight, Artur Kyshenko takes on Yodsanklai Fairtex at 72.6kg. Kyshenko is one of the top kickboxers in the world at 70kg and he'd probably be around the top at the 72.5-73kg if he fought there more. Yodsanklai Fairtex or "Yod" for short, has reigned supreme over the area of 72.5kg for quite a long time. He's long been subjected to fantasy match-ups with the cream of the crop at 70kg and now one of them has finally come to fruition. Many people, including myself have thought for a while that Kyshenko would be much better off fighting higher than 70kg and he proved it by looking great in defeating Nieky Holzken in May. It's not clear what ruleset these two are fighting under as it's listed as "K-1/MT Rules 3x3" but I'd think that they would be K-1 rules.
In another great fight, Chahid Oulad el Hadj takes on Dzhabar Askerov. This fight is all but guaranteed to be a slugfest similar to the likes of Chahid vs. Mike Zambidis from last year. Both guys bring it every single time and love to slug it out in the middle of the ring. Expect fireworks.
Ray Sefo also makes his return..but not to kickboxing. Sefo will be taking on Jorgen Kruth in an MMA bout. It's somewhat of a strange match-up as both of them are kickboxers, both having fought numerous times in K-1. Kruth is 3-0 in MMA, having fought MMA twice on Rumble of the Kings cards. Sefo has a 2-1 record in MMA, where he last fought and lost to Valentjin Overeem in Strikeforce. [source]
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Thai Fight Extreme is back with another show, after their show in China last month. Once again, many great Thai fighters are featured on the card like Buakaw, Yodsanklai, Sudsakorn just to name a few. It's nice to see some of the top fighters in the world fight often and Thai Fight Extreme is giving them many opportunities to do so.
You'll also see that MMA fighter Akihiro Gono is on the card. He won a four man tournament to become Japan's representative for Thai Fight's tournament at -70kg, which will take place later in the year. This time though, he's fighting at 75kg and against none other than Yohan Lidon. Lidon is a veteran of the muay thai scene and recently won the It's Showtime 73MAX World Title. It'll be a very, very tough test for Gono and if he won it would be a massive upset. Gono has fought and lost to Yuya Yamamoto, but Lidon is on a whole other level, especially with this being under muay thai rules.
Another interesting fight not involving any Thais is Yuya Yamato vs. Fabio Pinca. The two fought at the Thai Fight event in May in Pinca's home country of France. Yamato opened up Pinca with an elbow and won the fight on a cut stoppage. Pinca was noticeably angry and in his next fight at the last Thai Fight event, he came out and completely destroyed his opponent Ding Ning of China. Pinca looked determined as ever and I have no doubt he'll come into this fight wanting nothing more but revenge.
Here's the full fight card below:
-67kg: Saiyok Phunphanmuang VS Koh Suman
-70kg: Sudsakorn Sor Klinmee VS Tomoyuki
-75kg: Yohan Lidon VS Akihiro Gono
-73kg: Yodsenklai Fairtex VS Yasuhito Shirasu
-70kg: Buakaw Por Pramuk VS Tomaki Makino
-67kg: Fabio Pinca VS Yuya Yamato
-70kg: Adil Kodja VS Yoichi Yamazaki