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Pay Tribute to the Legend that is Bruce Lee

Bruce LeeThis is two days late, but due to my traveling schedule I was unfortunately able to get this up on July 20th, but the 20th was 38 years since the passing of the legendary Bruce Lee. Lee was one of the first true martial arts pioneers who helped popularize martial arts throughout the world. A lot of great men, martial artists and entertainers came before him, but his style, charisma and the realistic choreography used in his films made him so entirely different and a breath of fresh air, Martial Arts films became accessible to a wider audience. The bulk of films featuring Martial Arts focused on theatrics and wire work before Lee's films, while Lee's films were more focused on close combat and the fights being incredibly realistic compared to the rest of the fare.

Sadly, Lee passed away before Enter the Dragon could be fully realized on the big screen and released to a wide audience, the film that made him an incredible superstar the whole world over. The film featured a tournament on an island, a concept that would be used almost entirely wholesale in the creation of the popular videogame franchise "Mortal Kombat" in the 90's, with the feature film created from it playing out like a mix between Enter the Dragon and Bloodsport.

The tournament format in sports, especially combat sports is very well known, but many have noted the distinct similarities between the concept of gathering the greatest fighters in the world for a marital arts tournament in Enter the Dragon and the concept behind Kazuyoshi Ishii's K-1 World Grand Prix. I can honestly say that without Bruce Lee's Enter the Dragon, there is a chance that K-1 would not have became as popular as it was, nor would it have really caught my eye. I grew up as a huge Bruce Lee fan, respecting all of the obstacles he had to overcome, from racial prejudices, internal struggles within his own community of martial arts instructors to his own, personal struggles in dealing with his shortcomings and working around his ego to become a better person. Lee's philosophy has become almost as famous as his films have, with many of his teachings transcending the world of martial arts and bleeding into every day society.

His vision of martial arts also looked more at what was effective in a fight, as opposed to simply doing what was tradition. Katas were vital for perfecting certain techniques and practiced for ceremony and tradition a lot of the time, as opposed to practiced for being effective, and on top of that, techniques from other forms of martial arts sometimes perfectly complemented a form from the art you are practicing. Lee took a "Mixed Martial Arts" approach to fighting, with Jeet Kune Do not using a belt ranking system, nor did it adhere to one style. Bruce's base was Wing Chung Gung Fu, but he openly sampled from Japanese Judo, Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai and Karate, utilizing whatever technique worked the best and was the most effective for any given situation. In a way, Jeet Kune Do opened the door to what we know as modern Mixed Martial Arts.

In a way, Bruce is really one of the fathers of modern Martial Arts and should be appreciated in that way. So, to pay your respects, check out what was filmed of his last film, "Game of Death" in this 30-minute climax scene that has now become legendary and enjoy.

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With Alistair Overeem Out of the Strikeforce Heavyweight GP, a K-1 Return is Possible

Some of the downright oddest news I had read in the past few weeks was that Alistair Overeem was no longer in the Strikeforce Heavyweight GP and there were rumors swirling around that he was no longer fighting under the Zuffa banner at all. On Monday Overeem went on the MMA Hour and more or less trashed his new bosses, claiming no one had confirmed him fighting on September 10th with him and revealing that he only had one fight on his contract remaining with Zuffa. The insanity that a fighter involved in a possible three-fight tournament with only two fights remaining on their current contract is disorganized at best. Many had assumed that since Zuffa's purchase of Strikeforce that fighters like Overeem would be immediately locked down into newer contracts, but the truth is that Overeem's management team at Golden Glory has been trying to negotiate with Zuffa to secure the future for Overeem and it appears that things have reached a standstill.

With UFC scooping up Strikeforce talent such as Nick Diaz and possibly Gilbert Melendez it would only make sense to scoop up Heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem as well, but the Heavyweight Grand Prix has made that difficult. Overeem is apparently nursing a broken toe, which he has decided will keep him out of action until at least October, when he feels like he could fight.

In recent interviews Alistair has made mention of a possible boxing match with Vitali Klitschko in Europe, which for the uninitiated is a reigning boxing world champion and former kickboxer himself and would make for a huge payday for Overeem, possibly more than he could make in his MMA career. Overeem has also noted that K-1 will be returning and that he would love to return to kickboxing action and under his current Strikeforce contract he is able to do so. If you add this to the persistent rumors that K-1 has an upcoming event planned for October in China or Japan and there being no Strikeforce events scheduled for October, it appears like Overeem showing up in a K-1 ring is possible.

Out of all the unlikely scenarios one would have imagined just two months ago, it has once again become a possibility.

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Bloodstain Lane Pays Tribute to Andy Hug

If you don't know Andy Hug, immediately go over to YouTube and search for his fights, that is really all that I can say to you. Andy Hug is one of the greatest kickboxers to ever grace the K-1 ring. Hug was a bit undersized to be fighting against the Heavyweights of the world but still not only held his own, but was successful. Love him or hate him, Bloodstain Lane's latest video does a great job of paying tribute to Andy Hug, who was diagnosed with acute leukemia in 2000, fell into a coma and passed away after multiple organ failure. [source]

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Photo of the Day: K-1's Financial Woes Makes Headlines

K-1's financial woes are nothing new to LiverKick.com's readers, as we've been covering K-1's inability to pay their fighters on time for longer than the existence of LiverKick.com now. Ray Sefo's last bout with K-1 was in October of 2010 after fighting for K-1 3 times within the span of a year. Sefo's deal with K-1 was heavily talked about throughout the hardcore fan community as being upwards of 3 million dollars for a multi-fight deal, and apparently the last part of that deal was to pay Sefo $700,000. It has been 9 months now, and Sefo has been very publicly discussing how K-1 has yet to pay him. Many have rushed to defend K-1, whose contracts do have certain clauses about pay and the timeliness of it. This is standard in the international fighting world, for example Ultimate Glory pays 30 days after the event. K-1's clause is usually in the range of six months, and Ray Sefo has worked with K-1 for many years, so there is no chance of him not knowing this.

This is all immaterial now, as it has been over nine months and Tanikawa has even stated that the Sefo situation is "taken care of." It is important to note that the Japanese media have an unspoken gag order of sorts of them when it comes to matters like this. Business in Japan is very different and there are a lot of secrets, what happens behind closed doors is usually not as public as it is in other places. For a Japanese newspaper to print an article about Ray Sefo, Peter Aerts and more being owed money by Tanikawa, as well as Tanikawa lying, it would have to be considered a big deal. It is. [source]

Ray Sefo

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