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Japan Gets Embarrassed By Shoot Boxing's S-Cup

  • Published in Kickboxing

There’s a belief in the fight community that when you go to Japan that you need to be prepared for anything. You could say that for any fighter going into another country where they are to fight local fighters they have their backs against the wall and fear the “hometown decision,” but in Japan it always seems amplified. A part of that is the marriage of professional wrestling and professional fighting that has existed for a very long time in the world of “kakutougi.”

In fact, if you were to look at Shoot Boxing’s S-Cup event there was a professional wrestling bout on the card featuring New Japan Pro Wrestling Junior Heavyweight sensation Kota Ibushi against former DDT Pro Wrestling colleague Michael Nakazawa. It was originally labeled as an “exhibition match” under Shoot Boxing rules and was scheduled to be against Kazushi Sakuraba, but that fell through thanks to Metamoris 5. 

That should set the tone for you.

This S-Cup was one of the few that I’ve seen more than the usual fans excited over, which was in part due to the card that they put together. Mosab Amrani, Pornasae, Hiroaki Suzuki, Michiko Omigawa, Hiroki Shishido and American Muay Thai fighter Kevin Ross were all a part of the tournament, while legend Andy Souwer and Shoot Boxing hero RENA were in Super Fights. 

It felt like one of the bigger shows that Shoot Boxing had put on in a very, very long time and then Shoot Boxing went and put on a shameful display for all of the world to see. 

The draw for American fans was muay thai standout Kevin Ross being in the tournament. Ross went into the tournament against his toughest test by the way of former Sengoku, DREAM and UFC alumnus Michihiro Omigawa. Omigawa was a champion Judoka who rose to prominence in the Japanese MMA scene and after his UFC stint gave a shot at Shoot Boxing. Much like Toby Imada in the past, his grappling skills were able to help him against seasoned kickboxers and 2014 was his second attempt at Shoot Boxing gold.

By all accounts Omigawa was winning the first round handily thanks to his throws, which score heavily under Shoot Boxing rules, but there was a clash of heads that led to a nasty cut on Omigawa's face. In the second round the cut was a major factor, leading the ref to stopping the bout. The referee awarded the fight in favor of Ross due to the stoppage, while backstage there was a different story and Shoot Boxing organizers informed Ross that the fight was being rendered a No Contest and that he would not continue on in the tournament. 

The rules are a bit unclear at a time like this, where it isn’t clear who was at fault, or if it was accidental. What the referee most likely saw and ruled was that the cut was due to Omigawa’s own “negligence” (section 10) and ruled it in favor of Ross. Shoot Boxing might have been arguing that it was due to both men, which would make things a lot muddier. The truth of the matter is, the referee awarded Ross the win in the ring and any time the decision is reversed backstage it will be a tough sell to anyone that it was on the up-and-up.

If that wasn’t frustrating enough, then there is the story of Zakaria Zouggari. Don’t know who Zakaria Zouggari is? Neither did we, but we sure as hell know now. Rob Emerson of MMA fame (fame?!) was scheduled to take part, but at the last minute was unable to secure a visa, which left Shoot Boxing in a bind and called up relative unknown Zakaria Zouggari to fill in for Emerson in a reserve bout. 

Zouggari defeated Shoot Boxing’s resident punching bag Bovy Sor. Udomson via cut stoppage in round two and, thanks to the Kevin Ross/Omigawa shenanigans, was called upon to fight in the tournament moving forward. 

That led to a fight with internationally-renowned Houcine Bennoui and for this amazing display.

Seriously. God damn.

So this unknown would move onto the finals. According to Andy Souwer after the event Zouggari literally got off of the plane, dropped his bag off in his hotel room then hopped on a bus and headed to the event without time to rest, eat or get acclimated. This was the man who went on to the finals against 2013 65kg S-Cup Champion Hiroaki Suzuki. This is where things went from bad to worse. Zouggari clearly had the fight won after three rounds, only for an extension round to be ordered. When that was too close a SECOND extension round happened where Suzuki was finally able to score a TKO over Zouggari and it looked like Shoot Boxing’s hand-picked champion had won again.

It was almost like they weren't trying to hide the favoritism and that they really, really wanted Suzuki vs. Omigawa in a rematch of last year's finals. 

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Your Muay Thai Update

  • Published in Kickboxing

SaenchaiThere have been a number of smaller Muay Thai stories making the rounds lately that we haven't had a chance to mention, so for you fans of the science of eight limbs, here are some of the latest rumblings, all collected together.

-First up, a result from this past weekend direct from Thailand.  One of the big events this year has been the ongoing Isuzu Thai Fight qualifying tournament at Omnoi Stadium.  That tournament is nearing completion, as the first of the two semi-finals went down this past Saturday.  In semi-final #1, it was Nopparet Keatkhamtorn vs. Dernchonlek Sor. Niyom.  Check the full entry for the complete fight, and if you don't want the result spoiled, stop reading this paragraph now.  The semi-final clash was a good, if slightly odd fight at times, with Nopparet seeming to show some irritation throughout.  As the fight progressed, Dernchonlek looked to control the clinch for the win, but it wasn't enough as Nopparet took the decision win.  He now moves onto the finals to face the winner of Khem Sitsongpeenong vs. Prakaisaeng Sit O on April 16.

-We previously reported on the May 14 Thai Fight Extreme card, and now we have some more details.  Coming from France, this is the event featuring a stacked line-up including Buakaw, Yodsaenklai, Saiyok, and more.  A tentative card has been released, and it looks like they are going with a Thailand vs. France theme.  The current line-up:

Saiyok Pumpanmuang vs. Mohamed Diaby

Sudsakon Sor Klinmee vs. Abdallah Mabel

Yodsaenklai Fairtex vs. Jose Barradas 

Buakaw Por Pramuk vs. Djime Coulibaly

Petasawin Seatransferry vs. Sofian Dergada 

Yuya Yamato vs. Fabio Pinca 

Hiroki Komata vs. Samir Mohamed

Hiroki Yamamoto vs. Ibrahim Chiahou

Not a huge challenge for either Yod or Buakaw, but both Sudsakorn vs. Mabel and Saiyok vs. Diaby should be good fights.

-Another upcoming fight for Buakaw could be his planned appearance in the US at the August 13 Stand Up Promotions event in Anaheim, CA.  Seeing the K-1 MAX legend is reason enough to be excited for this card, but they've now added a huge fight that should draw you in.  On August 13 it will be pound for pound Muay Thai king Saenchai Sinbi (that's the former Saenchai Sor Kingstar, now relocated to Sinbi gym) vs. American Muay Thai stand-out Kevin Ross.  This is an amazing score for the promotion, as this will mark the first time an American challenges Saenchai here in the US.  There's great stuff going on in the west coast Muay Thai scene these days, and this match just shows how alive that scene is.  Also discussed for that card are Kaoklai and Saiyok.

-Speaking of Saenchai, just a reminder that he is in action this weekend, facing Liam Harrison on the 9th at Duel at the Dome in the UK.

-Finally, one more US fight rumor - on May 14 Lion Fight Promotions will host Battle in the Desert 2.  Rumors now indicate that the show may feature former It's Showtime and King's Cup champion Cosmo Alexandre against Cyrus Washington.  Once again, this would be a great chance to see a top international Muay Thai name here in the US.

Watch Nopparet vs. Dernchonlek in the full entry.

 

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S-cup 2014 Results

  • Published in Asia

There is still time to order the S-cup if you havn't already, the step by step instructions here will help you out. Otherwise we will post Results for you here as soon as they happen.

Results

65 kgs Tournament

Final - Hiroaki Suzuki vs Zakaria Zouggari  - Hiroaki Suzuki Wins by TKO 2nd EXT Rd (Zakaria had this fight won at 3 rounds, this was bad.. AGAIN)

Semi Final 2 - Houcine Bennoui vs  Zakaria Zouggari - Zakaria Zouggari Wins by KO Rd 2 (Right hand)

Semi Final 1 - Hiroaki Suzuki vs Mosab Amrani - Hiroaki Suzuki Wins by Decision (Mosab should have won this fight clearly)

Hiroki Shishido vs Houcine Bennoui - Houcine Bennoui Wins by Decision 

Michihiro Omigawa vs Kevin Ross - Kevin Ross Wins by TKO Rd 2 (cut stoppage due to clash of heads) (later ruled a no contest reserve winner advanced instead)

Mosab Amrani vs Nishiura Wicky Satoshi-sei - Mosab Amrani Wins by Decision

Hiroaki Suzuki vs Pornsanae Sitmonchai - Hiroaki Suzuki Wins by KO Rd 3 (right hook)

Superfights

Andy Souwer vs Kuniyoshi Hironaka - Andy Souwer Wins by TKO Rd 3 (corner threw in the towel)

RENA vs Isis Babikku - RENA Wins by Decision

Fushimi Kazuyuki vs Naito Taiki - Naito Taiki Wins by KO (flying knee to the chin)

Sakamoto Yuki vs Uchimura Yojiro - Sakamoto Yuki Wins by Decision

Kaito vs Ishihara Yasha Bow - Kaito Wins Decision Ext Rd

Tournament Reserve - Bovy Sor Udomson vs Zakaria Zouggari - Zakaria Zouggari Wins by TKO Rd 2 (cut stoppage)

 

 

 

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How to order the S-cup 2014 on NicoNico step by step

  • Published in Kickboxing

Okay, so the S-cup is on this weekend, it starts on Sunday at 13:00 in Japan which is Saturday at 23:00 EST or 20:00 PST. Finally it's at a decent hour for us to watch, except to order it we have to decode NicoNico tv and most of us here in North America cannot read Japanese. The difference this time is that Kevin Ross in taking part who is American which will make more of us want to watch.

The easiest way to do this is use Google chrome and use the translate button (right beside the favourties star) to just translate the site one page at a time, But we have also decided to to a step by step for people that need a little help.

 - Step 1 - go to this link https://secure.live.nicovideo.jp/event/shootboxing and click the yellow "new account registration button"


- Step 2 - it will take you to a page where u have to type in your email, once you do that check your email account and click the confirmation link.

- Step 3 - Fill out this form 

- Step 4 - Once the form is filled out and u have clicked proceed go back to this link https://secure.live.nicovideo.jp/event/shootboxing and click the big pink/red button


- Step 5 - A box will come up that says you dont have enough points once again click the red/pink button and it will take you to a terms and conditions page, Scroll down and click the Yellow Button at the bottom and you will be at this page.

This page is asking how many points you want to buy, the shootboxing event is either 1300 or 1500 so u will need to click on 2000, which costs 2000 Yen, which is 16.99 USD.

-  Step 5 - once you have clicked the 2000 you will be at this page where it asks to click all sorts of payment methods that we don't know, just scroll down to the Visa one

- Step 6 - Fill in your credit card info here is a translated picture then click the yellow button.

One more screen will pop up confirming the 2000 points for 2000 Yen, just click the yellow button and transaction is complete. Now you have the points on your account u can go back to the first Link https://secure.live.nicovideo.jp/event/shootboxing and click red button to buy the ticket and it should go through nicely. If the you preorder the fights it costs 1300 Yen, if u wait its 1500 Yen.

 

 

 

 

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Kevin Ross Talks About Lion Fight 9 With LiverKick

  • Published in Interviews

Kevin Ross (C) Galen OkazakiThe ability to overcome adversity is what can make or break a fighter and take them from being just a fighter to a legend. In the case of American Muay Thai fighter Kevin Ross, the adversity has never been his skill, abilities or drive, but instead an ACL injury that he suffered last year. He spent months rehabbing it after surgery and everything was built up for his comeback fight this January at Lion Fight 8. We spoke with Kevin back then about his comeback trail as well as the details of what he goes through in his personal life, what actually makes Kevin Ross tick and we were all treated to seeing Kevin’s successful comeback against Chris Kwiatowski.

It was the first step of many for Ross after coming back from an injury that would have stopped most fighters in the prime of their career and this Friday, live on AXS TV, Ross looks to once again enter the ring and take on a very game opponent in the UK’s Bernie Mendietta. Part of his last fight was not knowing exactly what Chris would bring to the table, and in the case of Mendietta he expects the same.

“I think that I know less about him than I did Chris,” he joked. “I’ve just really seen clips at this point, where with Chris I had at least seen a full fight or two. I know that he’s a tough guy, though, I know that he likes to brawl, so I know what I’m in for.”

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A Conversation with Lion Fight 8's Kevin Ross on the Comeback Trail

  • Published in Interviews

Ross (C) Can't Stop Crazy / Galen Okazaki

If you follow Muay Thai in America, you know the name Kevin Ross. Hell, if you follow Muay Thai in general, you know Kevin Ross. Ross is one of the few American fighters over the past few years to really move outside of his comfort zone and go to Thailand and fight some of the best in the world. He has long been considered one of the best Thai fighters to come out of the US by fans and is set to make his return to the ring this Saturday night at Lion Fight 8 live on AXS TV.

Kevin is coming off of a pretty bad ACL injury that required surgery and months of rehabilitation that left him out of action for all of 2012, but that all ends this Saturday night as he squares off against Chris Kwiatkowski. LiverKick's Dave Walsh caught up with Kevin to discuss this fight, his rehabilitation and a whole lot more.

LK: So obviously it has been a while since you’ve fought, what have you missed the most when it comes to fighting?

KR: I mean, I’ve missed it all. Right after surgery I was in there on one leg punching the bag. I couldn’t stay away, man, I’d start getting depressed, like this is what I love to do, you know? Like the number one passion in my life and to be away from it for any period of time is just impossible. Especially the fighting. The fighting is like the peak of the sport, you know, with what I love to do it is the very top of that. To be away for as long as I have been, it’s been really hard. Even if it’s a month or two, I want to be in the ring. It’s been what, 15 months? It’s been rough.

LK: The ACL injury that you are recovering from could mean the end of a career for some fighters, but you seem to be healing up pretty well from it. What kind of obstacles did you have to overcome to heal up from the injury and the surgery?

KR: There’s a list! In the beginning one of the biggest hurdles I had to overcome was there was all of this scar tissue in my knee. We couldn’t get to the actual rehabilitation until they could get all of that broken up so I could bend my knee back all the way. The first few weeks were some of the most painful things I’ve had to go through in my life, I was like punching holes in the wall, man. Every time I went in there to rehab they had to break up the scar tissue and like smash my leg back down trying to get it to bed all of the way back. That was one of the hardest things. You know, not knowing if I was going to be able to make it back.

There were some days when I really was like, “I don’t know if I can do this anymore.” I knew that I could walk right now, but didn’t know if I could make it back. As soon as I was able to start training again I would look at all of the videos of my training that I did for my old fights, and was like damn dude, I don’t know if I can do that again. While I’m happy to be healthy and all of that, at the same time you realize how hard the sport is. You forget all of the stuff that you have to do. The ups and downs and stuff, you get kind of mixed feelings about it, but they are all temporary things. This is what I love to do and that is what got me through.

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Lion Fight 10 Weigh-In Video

  • Published in Muay Thai

Lion Fight

Lion Fight 10 goes down tonight, live on AXS TV at 10PM Eastern time. It is set to feature two huge title bouts as well as some big names featured throughout the rest of the card. Lion Fight always finds a way to deliver and tonight should be no different, so make sure to tune in for some live muay thai action tonight, which of course LiverKick will be covering live.

Here is some video from the weigh-ins to give you a taste for what is in store for tonight.

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Kevin Ross Captaining K-1's Upcoming USA vs. China Event on January 1st

  • Published in K-1

Since K-1's event last December in China there has been a lot of hushed talk about the future of K-1 in China. The year 2014 has been a lot better to K-1 than other years and there have been a lot of deals talked about that could possibly make K-1 not only a major player in China, but huge in China. From what we've seen, K-1 has been training referees, judges and other officials on top of lending a hand to train fighters in China over the last year and on January 1st K-1 will make their return to China with a huge USA vs. China event.

It'll take place in Golden Eagle Culture City, Changsua, China and as I stated before, the theme will be USA vs. China. While we don't know all of the names just yet, we have heard that Kevin Ross has signed to be the Team Captain of Team USA and will be fighting, which is pretty big news considering that Ross was being courted by K-1 years ago and GLORY last year only for nothing to come of it. We've also been told that Canadian Gabriel Varga is scheduled to appear on the card, which is interesting considering there was talk of him competing for GLORY's Featherweight Championship soon. 

Tiffany Van Soest is also announced for the card.

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East Coast Muay Thai Goes Big Time

  • Published in Muay Thai

(C) Bauzen

May 23rd, 2014-Foxwoods Casino, Mashantucket, CT-

The biggest Muay Thai Promotion in North America has finally brought its great product, Lion Fights, to the East Coast.  The event brought some of the biggest established names in North American Muay Thai into the ring as well as some solid up-and-comers and talented amateurs.  In a region of the country that has seen some recent criticisms of its Muay Thai and MMA scene’s refs, judges and sanctioning bodies, Lion Fight rose above, and but for a slip-up by the announcer, had solid reffing, judging, and even the ringside doctors did a great job in monitoring the cuts during the show.

In the Main Event, the much touted Cosmo Alexandre faced off with the Canadian Mark Holst.  Alexandre, the Brazilian ex-patriot, looked physically stronger, moved better, and for the full five rounds looked like a Lumpini champion sparring with a talented but not at his level professional.  Cosmo controlled the pace and action, absorbed what he allowed and then landed hard overhand rights, at will.  Holst was game, and kept attacking, but he saw early that his power had no effect, while Alexandre’s shots knocked him off his spot and bent him like a palm tree in the wind.  All three judges had it for Alexandre: 50-45, 49-45, and 49-47.

The Co-Main Event was really the fight of the night.  Like a gourmet meal, it wasn’t the biggest serving, but you got was absolutely awesome.  The action started before the bell finished tolling, Mauceri came straight out of his corner like cannonfire, as is his usual style.  The veteran, Kevin Ross, had obviously watched tape and game-planned for this.  Ross used Mauceri’s straight forward approach to lure him into traps, letting Mauceri run into his elbows,  use his movement, his ring-savvy and crafty combos effectively.  In the first few minutes Mauceri’s head crashed into Kevin’s right elbow, resulting in a deep, deep gash on his forehead, above the left eye.  The blood began to flow immediately and the referee stopped the fight to let the ringside physicians take a look.  One came and looked deeply into the cut, he then called over the other physician who looked again, they conferred, and as if in response to the crowd calling for it to continue, decided to give him a chance to finish the round and let his corner work on it.  Knowing the immediacy of the situation, Mauceri turned the aggression on, landing punch and kick combos, and pushing Ross to the ropes.  But the always cagey Ross used great lateral movement to circumvent Mauceri’s attacks and set up flashy elbow attacks and punch combinations.  After the Black and Blue team had a minute to work on Mauceri’s cut, he came out hard and fast in round 2, catching Ross with a great sweep that scored well.  But Ross laughed it off confidently and went to work over the rest of the second and beginning of the third round, carving the always advancing Mauceri’s head up with his elbows, causing the doctors to stop the fight and leaving a scar like the Mark of Zorro, in 25 stitches on Mauceri’s head as a souvenir.  Wow!

In other notable action, Tiffany van Soest stepped into Payne’s pocket, in close enough range for van Soest to land effectively, but too close for Payne’s much longer arms and legs to have any power.  The pressure, movement and power of van Soest were too much for the game and fighting back Payne, but in the end, the Unanimous Decision went to Tiffany: 50-45, 50-46, and 49-46.  Mohammed Lemjerdine took on Jason Andrada for the second time.  Again, the longer more technical and traditional Lemjerdine controlled the action, scoring two flash knockdowns in the first, that I thought didn’t need to be counted in either instance, but the referee did, thus giving Mohammed a big advantage on the cards.  Andrada responded very well, and made it a great and entertaining fight, but couldn’t find that knockout button he used to take the victory last time.  The Unanimous Decision went to Lemjerdine: 48-47, 48-45, and 48-46.  As a last minute replacement, Pedro Gonzalez stepped in and took on Nick Chasteen.  Gonzalez was consistent in his attack, driving Chasteen to the ropes, clinching and mushing, and then dropping elbows and knees when he had position.  It was very effective for him, as he scored a standing 8 and a cut over Chasteen’s left eye in the first and then sealing the deal with another series of elbows that cut Chasteen badly enough for the doctors to signal an end to the fight.  In both fighters’ pro debut, Tim Amorim showed what traditional Muay Thai strategy and technique can do against a more kickboxing, TKD style as he chopped down Tom Evans front leg, and evaded the spinning back kicks and fists to land hard punches and elbows, causing Evan’s cornermen to stop the fight between the 2nd and 3rd rounds, giving Amorim a TKO victory in his young record.

Amateur Bouts on the card included:

Brian Bogue def. Jesse Skomial by UD

Brandy Young def. Colleen Downey by UD

Stephane Kenny (ne Smarth) def. Dave Hayrikyan UD

Patrick Rivera def. Pavel Zawistowski by MD

Phil DaSilva def. Stoney Morales by MD

 

 

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Behold: Kevin Ross and Andy Souwer Sparring

  • Published in K-1

In the kickboxing and muay thai worlds there are sometimes some strange separations that exist. That seems to be the case with the American muay thai community and the European kickboxing scene. Well, Andy Souwer put on a seminar in California last month, and believe it or not, this means he met with American muay thai fighter Kevin Ross. So Ross and Souwer did some sparring and if you are a fan of both, it is quite awesome to watch.

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