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Kickboxing (1262)

Bushiroad Creates KNOCK OUT, Aiming To Take Over Kickboxing

Kickboxing's rise in popularity can almost entirely be thanked on behalf of Japan, K-1 in particular. Sure, lots of talent came from (and still comes from) Europe, but the shows never quite reached the level that K-1 did in Japan. Therefore, K-1 was kickboxing for a very, very long time. The death of FEG led to the fracturing of the sport. Now we have GLORY, K-1 Japan, K-1 Europe, SuperKombat, WGP, Kunlun and many other promotions in its wake. 

The reality here is that there are people who believe in kickboxing as a sport and all want to make it big again, but under their own terms. Would it take a rising in Japan for the sport to boom again? That's what KRUSH has been hoping for with their K-1 Japan. KRUSH originally began as a joint venture between the All Japan Kickboxing Federation and K-1, then when AJKF fell to the wayside KRUSH split off on its own. Ironically, KRUSH now is the brand keeping the K-1 name alive in Japan. But that doesn't mean that everyone has always relied upon the whole K-1/AJKF mindset when it comes to kickboxing.

There was the New Japan Kickboxing Federation as well, which split off from AJKF in the mid-90's. The promotion No Kick, No Life rose in the ashes of the whole "anti-K-1" brand of kickboxing, instead focusing on muay thai rules. Now, replacing NKNL is KIXROAD, a collaboration between NKNL and Bushiroad with their show KNOCK OUT. Confused yet? KNOCK OUT takes over No Kick, No Life's television slot on Tokyo MX starting in 2017 and is being backed by Bushiroad. If you are unfamiliar with Bushiroad they are a trading card company based out of Japan. In 2012 Bushiroad acquired New Japan Professional Wrestling and has since made the once-great Japanese wrestling promotion flourish with the help of placing New Japan's biggest stars in Hiroshi Tanahashi, Shinsuke Nakamura (now in WWE), Kazuchika Okada and Togi Makabe (what?!) back into the national spotlight. 

That is exactly what Bushiroad is looking to do with KNOCK OUT. Our pal karaevfan on Kakutougi (the best kickboxing message board, period) gave a full report and translations from their first press conference and they have huge plans. They noted that kickboxing has yet to have a global leader since FEG's K-1 disappeared. MMA has the UFC, pro wrestling has WWE (although Kriyama of Bushiroad notes that New Japan is 'working on that'), but kickboxing is fractured. 

Famed former New Japan Kickboxing champion Onodera Riki will be producing KNOCK OUT and looking to once again make kickboxing flourish. This will be straight-forward, traditional kickboxing, which means three minute rounds, three rounds for normal fights, five for title fights. As for the rules? It sounds like muay thai, but they are calling it kickboxing. Why muay thai? Because they mentioned elbows. 

The first event is scheduled for December 5th at the Tokyo Dome City Hall (formerly JCB Hall), which seats about 3,000 people. The card is threadbare for now, but they aren't focusing on exclusive talent acquisition for now, just partnering with RISE and taking freelancers. 

Yuichiro 'Jienotsu' Nagashima  vs. T-98 (Takuya Imanari)

Haruaki Otsukivs. StarBoy KwaythongGym

Tenshin Nasukawa vs TBA

Genji Umeno vs TBA

They plan on running shows every other month and don't plan on making money for two years. Everything seems ambitious, with them wanting to expand the kickboxing market and overtake their competition. I guess we'll have to wait and see what they do.

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Fight Card for EM Legend 16 (Emei Legend)

EM Legend in China continues hitting on all cylinders for their next event, which happens on September 24th in China. Their 65kg tournament continues with Quade Tarnaki against Anvar Boynazarov and Kunchai vs. Manas. Also featured on the card is Rasul against Hiroya and a few other big fights.

65kg Tournament: Quade Tarnaki vs. Anvar Boynazarov

65kg Tournament: Kunchai vs. Manas

60kg Christian vs. Ji Duo Yi Bu

63kg Antoine Habash vs. Zhao ChuanLin

64kg Jonnata vs. Zhang ChengLong

65kg Rasul vs. HIROYA

70kg Sasu Lucian vs. Zhao XiaoYu

70kg Magomedov vs. Bian Denis

70kg Mendes vs. Liang YuanHao

70kg Mo ZhuangWei YuLong vs. Valentino Thibaut

70kg Ying PengPeng vs. William Whipple

70kg Elizier vs. Liu Lei

75kg Bahram Abdolmaleki vs. Han KaiHu

80kg Alexei Liubchenko vs. Falcao

93kg Sergj vs. Carlos Ulberg

100kg Douglas Abror vs. Andrei Sen

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Inaugural Rise of Heroes Fight Card

Rise of Heroes 1

WLF's new event series dubbed "Rise of Heroes" is set to start rolling on September 17 in Chaoyang, China. The events will feature a steady stream of 4-man tournaments at 57kg, 60kg, 68kg and 71kg. The winners of these qualifying tournaments then look to face each other at later events. There will also be superfights on each event starting with WLF regulars like Qiu Jianliang and Israel Adesanya.

Rise of Heroes will broadcast delayed each thursday on Beijing Television in China. We're still waiting to see possible details on internationally available live streaming and will keep you posted.

The following Rise of Heroes event is scheduled for October 29 & 30.

Fight Card

57kg Tournament Semifinals
Wang Junguang (China) vs. Thanapon (Thailand)
Feng Tianhao (China) vs. Elias Mahmoudi (France)

60kg Tournament Semifinals
Kong Long (China) vs. Dmitrii Sirbu (Moldova)
Fenf Liang (China) vs. Sergei Kurilchenko (Russia)

68kg Tournament Semifinals
Lu Jianbo (China) vs. Rungthiwa Kueabram (Thailand)
Bai Lishuai (China) vs. Aissam Chadid (Spain)

71kg Tournament Semifinals
Zhou Tao (China) vs. Luiz Perreira (Portugal)
Li Zikai (China) vs. Talha Tunc (Germany)

Superfight - 63kg
Wei Rui (China) vs. Maksim Petkevich (Belarus) 

Superfight - 88kg
Guo Qiang (China) vs. Mose Afoa (Tonga)

MMA - 70kg
Wang Guan (China) vs. Kamardin Akhmadbekov (Tajikistan)

Superfight- 85kg
Israel Adesanya (New Zealand) vs. Romain Falendry (France)

Superfight - 67kg
Qiu Jianliang (China) vs. Melvin Wassing (Netherlands)

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Enfusion Live 41 Fight Card

Enfusion Live 41 will take place on September 17, 2016 in Antwerp, Belgium and be a live PPV stream on their website www.enfusionlive.com. The card includes a 70kgs 4-man tournament, a rematch between Tayfun Ozcan and Mohammed Jaraya and a female world title fight between Najat Hasnouni Alaoui and Sheena Widdershoven.

Fight Card

1. 67kgs Enfusion World Title - Najat Hasnouni Alaoui (Morocco) vs Sheena Widdershoven (The Netherlands)

2. Ismael Lazaar (Morocco) vs Kirk Krouba (Ivory Coast)

3. 70kgs tournament - Aziz Kallah vs Mohammed Mezouari

4. 70kgs tournament - Yassin Baitar vs Cedrik De Keirsmaeker

5. 70 kgs tournament final

6. Ibrahim El Boustati vs Filip Verlinden

7. Crice Boussoukou vs Jonay Risco

8. Mohammed Jaraya vs Tayfun Ozcan

9. Nordin Ben Moh vs Serginio Kanters

 

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SuperKombat Explains The Lack of Stoicas On Recent Cards

SuperKombat is a promotion that has done a great job in building up its own stars, often times from just about scratch, taking rough fighters with talent and putting them in an international spotlight. Two such fighters were the Stoica brothers, Bogdan and Andrei. Both were focal points for the SuperKombat promotion, but have been mostly fighting for the Respect World Series events of late, their omission on SuperKombat cards notable. 

There were rumors of financial debates being the core of the fracture, but now SuperKombat's Alin Huiu spoke with KickboxingPlanet about why we haven't seen the two on their cards. 

Bogdan and Andrei were in this situation with a 90% rate of participation in Superkombat events from 2011 to 2015. In last two seasons, both lost world titles and new fighters came in the international attention so probably they had also an image problem. Beside that, we must accept that we passed difficult time with partners and sponsors and in the same time, fighters were asking more money even they didn’t had the same positions in the rankings. After different conflicts with their team, who was putting pressure on financial conditions, the business relationship with their gym was cancelled. 

While he said never say never to seeing them again, it seems like for now SuperKombat has shifted their focus to building other stars and that the Stoica brothers are finding their own way in the world. SuperKombat's next event is scheduled for October 1st.

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Superstar Actor Idris Elba to Fight in Kickboxing For Reality Series

One of the biggest stories that amounted to nothing for the kickboxing world was Jean-Claude Van Damme's desire to fight Somluck Kamsing in a kickboxing fight. The fight was teased for years, with the revival of JCVD's acting career getting in the way of his dream to prove to the world that his fighting credentials were for real and that he was an actual tough guy. The last we heard of this was JCVD jumping into the ring during one of Kamsing's fights in Thailand where he found himself in trouble, with Van Damme jumping into the ring in between rounds and attempting to fan his would-be challenger in an attempt to help him. Instead, Kamsing was disqualified. 

That was it for JCVD's big fight and perhaps we'll never hear about it again, but now an even bigger name has made a commitment to kickboxing; Idris Elba. Elba, the man who went from being Stringer Bell in The Wire to Luther on BBC to being a Hollywood leading man with everyone calling for him to portray James Bond, is probably at his peak popularity right now. His most recent role was as the main villain in Star Trek: Beyond with a lot more on the horizon.

But at age 43 he's following a dream of his, which is to fight professionally. During his 20's he trained kickboxing to keep himself in shape and considered fighting, but instead he found himself landing steady acting gigs, leaving his dream behind. Now, thanks to a partnership with Discovery Networks, he's back in training to be a kickboxer and the whole thing will be recorded and presented for audiences. 

The show is called Idris Elba: Fighter and will follow Elba throughout the span of a year, documenting his training across the world as well as his fight. Who he will be training with and who the fight will be against are a mystery, but the whole thing is said to air in early 2017.

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Krush 68 Fight Card

Krush 68 takes place tonight in Nagoya, Japan at the Nagoya Congress Center. The card will air live on Abema.tv if you are "IN" Japan, it wont be on their sports channel this time but on their designated fight channel which is shown by some Japanese kanji symbols. Aside from the great talent and usual crazy fights Krush always gives us this card as a special exhibition between Kaew Weerasakreck the K-1 65kgs champ and Takeru the K-1 55kgs champ. The fight is 3x2min rounds, I wonder how hard they will actually go. Hopefully its the type of exhibition that Masato and Kid Yamamoto had where Kid got dropped multiple times.

Fight Card

Kuroudo vs Shun Kato

Daiki Shimizu vs Takuma Kawaguchi

Seiya Ueda vs Kazuyuki Yamashita

Kentaro Miyachi vs Syun Kentoshi

Kazunari Kimura vs Daisuke Fujimara

Keisuke Nakamura vs Hiroyuki

Hiroto Iwasaki vs Rukiya

Masafumi Kurasaki vs Ryuji Horio

Exhibition match - Kaew vs Takeru

Taito vs Hisaki Higashimoto

Masaaki Noiri vs Pengfei Wang

 Kaito Ozawa vs Tatsuya Oiwa

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Kunlun Fight 51 & 52 Fight Card

After a stacked Kunlun Fight 50 on August 20th they will have Kunlun Fight 51 and 52 on Sept 10 and 11 in Fuzhou, China. Now the events aren't as stacked as Kunlun Fight 50 but there are some very interesting match ups including the return of Marc De Bonte to kickboxing, Hicham El Gaoui's Kunlun Debut, Andrei Herasimchuk in a heavyweight tournament and a 65kgs tournament. Adding Marc De Bonte and Hicham El Gaoui to the 80kgs division makes things very interesting.

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Kunlun Fight 50 Fight Card Featuring Sitthichai, Stetsurenko, Groenhart and More

Kunlun Fight 50 is happening on August 20 in Jinan, China with a lot of tournament action on the card. The 70kg tournament continues with 6 more fights to decide who gets to join Superbon Banchamek in the quarterfinals. On the event also the first 2 fights of a quality 8-man 80kg tournament with the likes of Murthel Groenhart and Alexander Stetsurenko participating.

Fight Card

60kg
Hao Jiahao (China) vs. Lin Qiangbang (China)

60kg
Li Jia (China) vs. Liu Lianfeng (China)

70kg
Yohann Drai (France) vs. Canison Yokasay (Thailand)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Mohamed Mezouari (Netherlands) vs. Arthit Hanchana (Thailand)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Serginio Kanters (Suriname) vs. Wu Xuesong (China)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Jomthong Chuwattana (Thailand) vs. Lee Sung-Hyun (South Korea)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Andrei Kulebin (Belarus) vs. Tian Xin (China)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Cedric Manhoef (Suriname) vs. Kong Lingfeng (China)

70kg Tournament 1/8 Final
Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong (Thailand) vs. Claudiu Badoi (Romania)

75kg
Hossein Karami (Iran) vs. Zhang Yang (China)

MMA - 59kg
Hera Tamati (New Zealand) vs. Tang Jin (China)

MMA - 61,5kg
TBA vs. Chu Guangfu (China)

80kg Tournament Quarterfinal A
Alexander Stetsurenko (Russia) vs. Bo Fufan (China)

80kg Tournament Quarterfinal B
Jonatan Oliveira (Brazil) vs. Murthel Groenhart (Netherlands)

75kg
Michal Ronkiewicz (Poland) vs. Zheng Zhaoyu (China)

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Glory of Heroes 4 Fight Card

Glory of Heroes 4

Glory of Heroes 4 is going down this Saturday in Changzhi, China and there's definitely a few names worth highlighting on the card. WLF regular Israel Adesanya will meet Yousri Belgaroui and Cedric Doumbe fights Chen Yawei. Also in a fight that was supposed to happen on the previous Glory of Heroes event but got cancelled last minute, Jemyma Betrian will get another chance to fight Chinese Gong Yanli.

As usual all the fights will be streamed live for free and the 2nd half of the card is also broadcast live on Henan TV.

Full Card

Kickboxing - 71kg
Lian Yuxuan (China) vs. Mostafa Hassanvand (Iran)

MMA - 65kg
Ji Xian (China) vs. Artem Horodinets (Ukraine)

Kickboxing - 58kg
Wang Junguang (China) vs. Sankeng (Thailand)

Kickboxing - 60kg
Yun Qi (China) vs. Kruk Yauhen (Belarus)

Kickboxing - 63kg
Deng Zeqi (China) vs. Stavros Exakoustidis (Greece)

Kickboxing - 55kg
Gong Yanli (China) vs. Jemyma Betrian (Netherlands)

Kickboxing - 63kg
Wei Rui (China) vs. Matteo Taccini (Italy)

Kickboxing - 72kg
Zhang Kaiyin (China) vs. Sakda Niamhom (Thailand)

Kickboxing - 68kg
Tie Yinghua (China) vs. Youssef Assouik (Denmark)

Kickboxing - 85kg
Israel Adesanya (New Zealand) vs. Yousri Belgaroui (Tunisia)

Kickboxing - 80kg
Chen Yawei (China) vs. Cedric Doumbe (France)

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