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Watch GLORY World Series LIVE on LiverKick May 26th

  • Published in Kickboxing

GloryWe are very pleased to announce that on May 26th LiverKick.com will be partnering with Glory Sports International to bring you the live stream of the big Glory event in Stockholm, Sweden. On May 26th Glory will kickoff their World Series of Kickboxing tournaments with the First 16 for the 70kg division while also hosting a slew of super fights, including Gokhan Saki vs. Carter Williams and Semmy Schilt vs. Errol Zimmerman.

Head over to Glory's newly-redesigned site to get a glimpse of the rest of the card.

As mentioned, we will be partnering with Glory to host the PPV right here on LiverKick, so you do not need to leave your favorite source for Kickboxing news and coverage on fight day. The event costs $15 and will begin at 12:30pm Eastern time/9:30am Pacific time/18:30 GMT +2. Go ahead and bookmark this page, as this will be where you go to order the event on fight day. All you have to do is click the "play" arrow on the video and then click the "Buy Access to this Event" button and it should be pretty straightforward from there. If you just want to watch the event, make sure to click "Single Video Access" when you're in the process of buying it.

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Gokhan Saki Off Jan. 30 Card?

  • Published in Kickboxing

Gokhan_SakiComing up on January 30 is the semi-final round of the United Glory World Series of Kickboxing and MMA - a pair of 8 man tournaments started last October and wrapping up this spring.  The current favorite to win the kickboxing side of the tournament is the #6 ranked Gokhan Saki, however the latest rumors indicate Saki may end up dropping out of the January 30 event.  Saki is still recovering from injuries suffered in his Grand Prix war with Daniel Ghita, and may not have time to get back in shape for this semi-final round.  If he does indeed drop out, Saki will likely be replaced by his Golden Glory stablemate Errol Zimmerman.  Zimmerman was originally scheduled to take part in the tournament, but had to drop out after being KO'd by Ghita at the K-1 Final 16.

The current semi-final matches have Saki vs. Wendel Roche and Brice Guidon vs. Mourad Bouzidi, with the winners meeting in the finals on April 21.  Losing Saki would be unfortunate, but in all honesty would make the tournament more interesting.  As it stands right now, Saki is the prohibitive favorite - Roche, Guidon, and Bouzidi are all talented fighters, but Saki stands head and shoulders above them.  Zimmerman on the other hand is at a career low point, and more on a level with the other semi-finalists.  He has already faced both Roche (with Zimmerman pulling off a close extra round decision win) and Bouzidi (in a fight that Bouzidi won via cut stoppage).  Both opponents would make interesting rematches for The Bonecrusher, while the underrated Guidon would be a tough challenge for Zimmerman.  Entering this tournament would help give us a clear view of just where Zimmerman stands right now, so while I wish Saki the best recovery, I won't complain about this switch if it happens.

On the MMA side, the semi-finals are currently listed as Siyar Bahadurzada vs. John Alessio and Roan Carneiro vs. Tommy Depret, however there is some shuffling over here also, as Alessio posted on twitter that he has been forced to drop out due to an injury suffered in training.  No word yet on a possible replacement. Again, winners here will meet in the finals on April 21.

The rest of the January 30 card includes a number of kickboxing and MMA super fights.  Two fights of note for kickboxing fans: Robin van Roosmalen will be in action, though his opponent is not yet determined; and Frederic Sinistra faces Filip Verlinden.

The entire card will be streamed at UnitedGlory.tv.  For details, including the complete line-up, be sure to visit UnitedGlory.nl.

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May 28: Zimmerman vs. Bouzidi II

  • Published in Kickboxing

Bouzidi Zimmerman 2009New fight announcement for the United Glory finals on May 28: in an intriguing rematch, it will be #14 Errol Zimmerman vs. #19 Mourad Bouzidi.

These two men first met two years ago at the It's Showtime Amsterdam Arena 2009 event.  At that time, Zimmerman was a top 5 fighter, riding high off his 2008 K-1 Grand Prix final 4 appearance and Fight of the Year with Badr Hari.  He was expected to take the fight easily, but it was not to be.  Near the end of round 1, Bouzidi caught Zimmerman with a knee, opening up a large cut above the eye that stopped the fight.  At the time, the fight was viewed as not even an upset, but more of a freak stoppage, and not a true loss for the Bonecrusher.  Rewatching it now with some perspective, that's a very unfair way to look at it.  Bouzidi was turning in a strong performance, giving Zimmerman a lot of trouble, and the knee that opens the cut is beautifully executed.  Mourad Bouzidi won that fight.

For the rematch, Zimmerman is in quite a different place.  A series of underwhelming performances and out of shape appearances has cooled his momentum considerably.  He is coming off a powerful win at the United Glory semi-finals, but that was against an opponent far below Bouzidi's level.  Despite their rankings, I would actually consider Bouzidi the favorite here, as he is the kind of disciplined, solid fighter that will always turn in a game performance.  In the end, it's a very close fight, and one that Zimmerman needs to win.  A win here shows he he still can compete at this level, while a loss furthers his downward slide.  I'm greatly looking forward to seeing how this one goes down.

Zimmerman vs. Bouzidi is the 3rd fight set for this card.  Already announced are the World Series of Kickboxing and MMA finals: Gokhan Saki vs. Brice Guidon on the kickboxing side, and Tommy Depret vs. Siyar Bahadurzada for MMA.

One final note - while I am excited about this fight, it must be mentioned that United Glory is notoriously unreliable for delivering fights as promised.  I really hope this one actually happens, but am prepared that it might not.

UPDATE: Two updates courtesy of Golden Glory trainer Martijn de Jong.  First, it appears the date is actually May 28, not the 21st as originally reported.  Second, de Jong announced a 4th featured bout: #4 Artur Kyshenko vs. #6 Nieky Holzken.  That right there is a GREAT match up, and if these four fights all go as planned, this is looking like a stacked show.

Watch Errol Zimmerman vs. Mourad Bouzidi from 2009 below:

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GLORY 19 Officially Announced

  • Published in Glory

Along with yet another successful card Glory also announced their next event which will take place on Friday the 19th of December. Glory 19 is rumoured to take place in the USA however no official location is confirmed at the moment.

Headlining the card will be the Heavyweight title bout between the current  champion Rico Verhoeven as he takes on Errol Zimmerman for the third time. Zimmerman won the initial encounter with a brutal KO in less than a minute at It's Showtime in January of 2012 with Verhoeven leveling the score with a points victory in New York at Glory 9 in June of last year. 

Zimmerman earned the right to fight for the belt after winning the Heavyweight Contender tournament back in May at Glory 16. Zimmerman, who's been incredibly inconsistent throughout his career, needed just a single round on both occasions to finish both Anderson Silva and Ben Edwards. Zimmerman aims to finally live up to his potential and put a convincing end to his trilogy with Verhoeven.

Verhoeven is currently riding a 6-fight win streak with all victories coming by decision. Verhoeven has only competed once this year under the Glory promotion, defeating Daniel Ghita for a second time in a highly anticipated rematch at Glory's marquee event this past June. Verhoeven has kept busy in 2014 though, making his professional boxing debut back in April where he KO'd Hungarian fighter Janos Finfera inside two rounds. Verhoeven will be looking for his first stoppage victory since May 2011. 

Also due to feature on the card is the Welterweight contender tourney, with the winner facing Joseph Valtellini in his first title defence. The tournament features two intriguing match-ups between Raymonds Daniels vs. Jonatan Oliveria and Nieky Holzken vs. Artur Kyshenko.

Jonatan Oliveira is currently undefeated in Glory, winning both of his contests by decision. He'll be taking a big step up in competition though as he looks to take on the human highlight reel in Raymond Daniels. Daniels is fresh of his ridiculous spinning heel kick KO of Francois Ambang back in May and will be looking to win this tourney so he can take revenge on Valtellini, whom beat him via KO last December.  

Holzken is probably wondering why he wasn't given an immediate shot against the champion, considering he's widely regarded as the best Welterweight on the planet and already has a convincing win over Valtellini. Holzken will take on a man whom has defeated him previously in Artur Kyshenko. Kyshenko has competed twice for Glory, most recently losing a lacklustre decision to Karapet Karapetyan back in March. Kyshenko has always been regarded as supremely talented however his fluctuations in weight class and general inconsistency have held him back from reaching his full potential. 

In the coming weeks look out for more announcements regarding the location of this card as well as additions to the fight card. 

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Hesdy Gerges vs. Errol Zimmerman Added to GLORY 11 Chicago

  • Published in Glory

Glory 11

Even if GLORY is shifting towards four-man tournaments, there is still going to be a need for a reserve fight in these tournaments and considering that the reserve fighters will have fought the same number of fights as the main tournament fighters, it seems a lot more even. It was announced today that at GLORY 11 Chicago and their huge Heavyweight tournament that we'll see a Heavyweight reserve bout between newly-signed Hesdy Gerges and Errol Zimmerman. Both men have been top ten Heavyweights for years now, with Zimmerman having an incredible run up until he ran into Semmy Schilt last year.

This is a very logical move on the part of GLORY and oddly enough, this is a fight that has never happened before. Never. It was expected to go down at the K-1 World Grand Prix in Nanjing in 2011, but FEG's financial problems led to that event not happening. So Chicago gets another big Heavyweight showdown between two of the best in the business, it is hard to complain about this card, which will be the promotion's debut on Spike TV.

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Errol Zimmerman: Wasted Potential

  • Published in K-1

In the wake of last weekend's GP, most discussion focused on the big wins by Peter Aerts and Alistair Overeem.  But one fighter who drew my attention for very different reasons was Errol Zimmerman.  Competing in the reserve fight against Ewerton Teixeira, Zimmerman was defeated soundly in a fight that may cause you to rethink his current K-1 standing.  Why?  Let's take a look.

To start, let's roll back to 2008.  This was the year Zimmerman made a splash in K-1, winning the World GP Amsterdam title.  That night, the Golden Glory fighter turned heads with wins over Atila Karacs, Bjorn Bregy, and Zabit Samedov.  Immediately, people were interested in the Bonecrusher, and he only increased that interest and hype with his dominant Final 16 victory over Glaube Feitosa.  From there, Zimmerman took out Teixeira in the GP quarter-finals, making it to the final 4 where he was defeated by Badr Hari in one of the best fights of 2008.  As the year ended, Zimmerman was on a roll, coming from semi-obscurity to being a top 5 fighter in just a few months.

As 2009 started, Zimmerman hit a bit of a bump in the road.  He followed up the Hari loss with an ill-advised MMA fight against Minowaman at Dynamite!! before suffering back to back loses to Peter Aerts and Mourad Bouzidi.  Those loses were somewhat troubling, but Aerts is always dangerous, and the Bouzidi loss came from a freak cut, so there wasn't a huge cause for concern.  Yet.

That changed last weekend.  In his reserve fight with Teixeira, Zimmerman did not just lose, he lost decisively.  Worse, he looked, in a word, bad.  Kogan and The Voice called him "bloated," which was an apt description.  After a year plagued by rumors of lackluster training habits, Zimmerman looked out of shape, unprepared, and simply out of his element.  It was the kind of performance that brings his entire recent career into stark perspective.  And when you look back at recent years, you see a disturbing trend in Zimmerman's performances, and that trend points decidedly down.

Since that career-defining 2008, Zimmerman has gone an unimpressive 3-6.  But it wasn't until recently that his loses started to look bad.  In addition to the Teixeira fight, Zimmerman looked completely over matched when knocked out by Daniel Ghita, and was made to look somewhat foolish by Semmy Schilt earlier this year.  However, it's not the losses that really show Zimmerman's troubles - it's the wins.  Of those 3 wins, only 1 was a stoppage.  That fight, a 24 second KO of Catalin Morosanu, was so brief that it said almost nothing about where Zimmerman stood (though it did speak volumes about Morosanu).  The other 2 wins were an extra round decision over the unranked Wendell Roche, and a close majority decision over Glaube Feitosa in the 2009 Final 16.  The Feitosa fight in particular stands out, as the Brazilian had only fought once since being dismantled by Zimmerman a year earlier, and was on the verge of retirement.  This had all the ingredients to be a Gerges/Fujimoto style win for Zimmerman, but instead Errol struggled, barely sneaking by the man he had so easily handled not long ago.  Against both Feitosa and Teixeira, we saw Zimmerman losing ground against fighters he handled not long ago.  Instead of hitting the upper ranks and continuing his rise, Zimmerman has fallen fast.

Sadly, this kind of story is all too common in sports.  It takes great dedication to make it to the upper reaches of any professional sport, and once you make it there, it takes even more dedication to maintain your spot against an increasingly tough level of competition.  But at the same time that these athletes must step up their game, they are also faced with increased fame and popularity and all the distractions that accompany them.  There is a great temptation to coast on your talent instead of pushing harder, and right now it seems like Zimmerman is indeed coasting.

For a prime example of where this can lead, Errol need look no further than another fighter in action last weekend.  Alexey Ignashov was once poised to be the next big name in K-1 and kickboxing.  But at his height, temptation took over, and Ignashov's career plummeted.  Just hours after Zimmerman's loss, Ignashov too was defeated, bringing an uninspired ending to the Red Scorpion's 2010 - the year that was suppossed to be Iggy's glorious comeback, but could end up as his swan song.

For Zimmerman, the end of 2010 is a clear crossroad.  If he continues as he has been, he will be another in a long line of underachievers who did not quite hit the levels their earlier careers forecast.  But if he makes changes, the man who rolled through the 2008 Europe GP, who pummeled Glaube Feitosa, who gave Badr Hari all he could handle - that man has the skills to be a future champion.  The choice is his.

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Photo of the Day: Glory World Heavyweight Championship

  • Published in K-1

Tomorrow Errol "Bonecrusher" Zimmerman will square off against Semmy Schilt, the four time K-1 World Grand Prix Champion and former K-1 Super Heavyweight Champion, and the winner takes home the big, new Glory World Heavyweight Championship belt. For Zimmerman, this would be his first major championship outside of the 2008 K-1 Amsterdam tournament and the 2011 SuperKombat Fight Club tournament wins.

Glory Heavyweight Championship

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United Glory Details and Videos

  • Published in Europe

United GloryWe've got more information coming in from United Glory from this past weekend. First up, if you are interested in the MMA portion of the card, Sherdog.com has full results from the MMA fights online.  Check those out here.  Video has also surfaced of both Nieky Holzken and Errol Zimmerman in their fights, so we have some details on those fights, plus those videos, below.  As for the rest of the card - your guess remains as good as mine.  Which, I have to say, is completely ridiculous.  It's a real shame that this company would put on a show featuring multiple top 25 fighters, then not even bother to tell anyone who was actually on the show.  In this day and age it's absurd not to put results up on your own site, or at the very least, visit a big message board such as Mixfight.nl and post full results.  I'd like to say I'm looking forward to the next United Glory show and Guidon vs. Saki, but I have so little faith that I'll actually see the show that it's hard to drum up much interest.

Up first is Nieky Holzken vs. an unknown fighter mis-labeled as Wendy Annonay.  To be clear, Holzken's opponent here is NOT Wendy Annonay, as the YouTube video states.  Mr. Annonay himself contacted us to clear this up.  Our sincere apologies to him, and our readers for the confusion - just more proof of the lack of information from UG. UPDATE: It appears Holzken's opponent is French fighter Carlos Tavares.

Anyway, not sure what weight class this was, as Holzken has been moving around the 70-77 range a bit lately.  His opponent looks pretty big, so I would guess something higher than just 70kg.  Very impressive performance from Holzken, who patiently waits for the right opening, then takes advantage once he gets it:

Next is Errol Zimmerman vs. Zinedine Hamer-Lain.  After hearing Zimmerman was on this card, I was interested to see this, as the Bonecrusher has not looked too good in his last few showings.  Here, we once again get the somewhat overweight looking Zimmerman - a fighter who looks distinctly different from the man who made the K-1 semi-finals 2 years ago.  On the plus side, he does show off his power and aggression here, putting a heavy beating on Hamer-Lain that ends up breaking the overmatched fighter's arm.  I'll call this one better than we've seen from Zimmerman lately, but still not the kind of shape I would like to see him in:

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The Rumored Structure For This Year's GLORY Grand Slam Tournament

  • Published in News

Glory

We've been keeping our ears to the ground over the past few months in regards to everything GLORY, from possible television deals to upcoming shows to the format for their big Heavyweight tournament for this year. Last year's GLORY Grand Slam tournament was interesting, to say the least, using a one-night, sixteen man format with shorter rounds. It led to some quick action, but some of the more methodical, technical fighters like Remy Bonjasky were really hurt by such a ruleset and four fights in one night is just a lot of fights.

While some within the GLORY organization were steadfast in saying that they would repeat the format again this year, we've heard some conflicting reports on the format of the tournament. As GLORY gets closer to a larger American television deal (no insult to CBS Sports, but tape delay at 1am is simply not good enough for shows like this) they have to be concerned with time constraints and putting on a tighter, more unified production. GLORY already do a fantastic job with their pacing on their events, with the fights following each other in quick succession in a way that doesn't feel rushed, but natural. We can at least expect the quirks of last year's Grand Slam to not return.

So according to our source, who wishes to remain unnamed, this year's tournament will be shrunk down from sixteen men to just four to be able to properly fit on a two to three hour American television slot while putting on entertaining fights and being able to properly present the fighters to the audience. The first three participants will be based upon the GLORY World Rankings, although it should be noted that word is that Semmy Schilt will not participate. That means that Gokhan Saki, Daniel Ghita and Tyrone Spong are guaranteed spots in the tournament, with the fourth spot being a "Wildcard." That "Wildcard" spot will be determined by another tournament that will take place before the event, a Qualifying tournament. It is not clear who will participate in this tournament, but the next four in the rankings are Peter Aerts, Remy Bonjasky, Jerome Le Banner and Errol Zimmerman (although I believe that Rico Verhoeven is actually in that spot now after his win over Errol).

So, what do you think? Would you be upset to see the Final 8 format disappear, or is it time for something new?

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Glory World Series Press Conference and Weigh-Ins Video

  • Published in Kickboxing

If for some reason you were like me, that means that you were sleeping a few hours ago when the Glory World Series live presser went down. That is kind of a bummer, as it was live on YouTube for the whole world to watch, in English, and hosted by none other than Mauro Ranallo. Lucky for us who enjoy sleeping, the internet is a marvelous thing and it was archived. This means you can watch it at your leisure as you get hyped up for what is one of the biggest kickboxing weekends in a very long time.

What is important when watching this video is to note just how far Glory has come. This press conference was uber professional and exactly what you'd expect from a worldwide combat sports brand working its way to the top.

Don't forget to watch the Glory World Series live this Saturday morning at 10:00am Eastern time/7:00am Pacific time. If you are worried about where to watch it, well, never fear, as you don't have to leave the comfort of your chosen web browser or even leave this very site. Just load up this page right now and order the video by clicking on it and plonking down $15 USD. Seriously, if you don't have a problem buying multiple UFC PPVs a year to fund Dana White's Bruce Lee t-shirt collection, this should be no sweat. Help out Glory and help out LiverKick, by doing so you will help me expand my own Bruce Lee t-shirt collection, which as of right now is a lone shirt. I have to beat Dana White in this category guys, and you can help.

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