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The Narratives Leading Out of GLORY 37: Van Roosmalen, Kongolo and More

For a lot of people, GLORY 37 snuck up on everyone. It's easy to understand, there is a lot going on in the world right now and the brief reprieve that we had from the usual onslaught of kickboxing shows was perhaps a welcome one. But it's right back to it and GLORY 37 saw a lot of interesting things happen. So here we are, let's break them down.

The smaller ring meant more action. This was a product of the venue and what worked best there, I suppose, but man did it really impact the night. The larger, more standard ring makes a lot of sense when it comes to heavyweights duking it out, but for lighter weight classes it has always felt a bit large. The smaller ring absolutely impacted the fights and it was interesting to see who benefited from it and who didn't. The smaller ring meant that more technical, outside fighters like Adesanya and Embree found themselves against strong pressure fighters being pressured. In the case of Adesanya it is fair to say that a larger ring could have yielded a completely different result. While a fight is a fight, things like gloves, the size of the ring and the slickness of a mat might seem incidental but can have a huge impact on the action. 

Not everyone can instantly adjust to kickboxing rules. This feels like a big one. Zoila Frausto has primarily fought in MMA and muay thai, this was her first kickboxing bout and it showed. When the fight got close she couldn't throw elbows, clinch and start throwing knees and it led to the fight being exciting to watch, but a bit of a mess. The same can be said for Matt Embree, who is an incredibly talented fighter who had a bit of trouble when it came to van Roosmalen's Dutch style. 

California is a mess. The issue of Robin van Roosmalen's weight cut and him being stripped of the title is an interesting one. While Robin's post-fight speech did perhaps try to shift away the blame from himself and his camp for him missing weight, there is a valid point that I've heard from others in California that everything with the commission gets gummed up there. Robin didn't have an official scale during his cut, was "on" in his hotel scale only to find out that he missed weight. That can't feel good. Something was clearly not communicated well during this process and van Roosmalen seemed to feel that he could have made weight if things had gone more smoothly.

Expect judges to rule against logic. One of the problems with the growing pains of kickboxing is referees and judges that don't have a strong connection with the sport. According to the GLORY rules and what we can assume was a literal interpretation of them by the judges, Wilnis was always going to win that fight. It was an incredibly close fight that really could have gone to either guy. That is on both fighters. What isn't is how the judges score these fights. Adesanya landed the better shots throughout the fight and kept Wilnis on the defensive, unable to land many of his trademark bombs. Yet, Wilnis waded in with the earmuffs on and controlled the ring. I saw a lot of disappointment that Adesanya didn't get the nod, even people upset at one particular bad scorecard that gave Wilnis four rounds. 

Robin van Roosmalen is a beast at Featherweight. Seriously. Sure, the weight cut happened, but there's a difference between having to overcome the mentality of being done with a weight cut only to find out you were off and being able to know exactly where you stand. It was .8lbs, which in the grand scheme of things, isn't the end of the world. As long as Robin van make the weight he's going to be a near-unstoppable force in this division. 

Cedric Doumbe's first challenge is set. There's a natural narrative in Kongolo fighting Doumbe for a third time, with that being Kongolo holds wins over Doumbe. Doumbe has grown a lot since those fights and has looked incredible, but styles make fights. It'll be interesting to see how Doumbe holds up against Kongolo in their third outing and there is really a natural story built in to this fight. Embrace it.

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Card for GLORY 38 Chicago on Feb. 24th

On the night of GLORY 37, GLORY has gone ahead and released the updated card for GLORY 38 Chicago, which takes place on February 24th featuring a Light Heavyweight Championship bout as well as a tournament featuring some of the top fighters in the weight class. The SuperFight Series is stacked as usual, with Adegbuyi vs. Braddock Silva, Catalin Morosanu making his GLORY debut, Groenhart vs. Thongchai and more.

GLORY 38 Chicago
Light Heavyweight World Title Headline Bout: Artem Vakhitov vs. Saulo Cavalari
Light Heavyweight Tournament Final Bout: Winner of Bout A vs. Winner of Bout B
Welterweight Co-Headline Bout: Richard Abraham vs. Antoine Pinto
Light Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal Bout B: Danyo Illunga vs. Ariel Machado
Light Heavyweight Tournament Semifinal Bout A: Zack Mwekassa vs. TBA


GLORY 38 Chicago SuperFight Series
Heavyweight Headline Bout: Benjamin Adegbuyi vs. Anderson Silva
Heavyweight Co-Headline Bout: Cătălin Moroșanu vs. Maurice Greene
Welterweight Bout: Murthel Groenhart vs. Thongchai
Welterweight Bout: Paweł Jędrzejczyk vs. Daniel Morales
Lightweight Bout: Łukasz Pławecki vs. Niclas Larsen

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WATCH: GLORY 37 Weigh-Ins and Interviews

The GLORY 37 weigh-ins have proven to be a big deal this time out, mostly due to Featherweight Champion Robin van Roosmalen missing weight and being stripped of the title. Now you can watch the weigh-in event thanks to GLORY, including interviews with van Roosmalen and Embree at the scales (starting at around 8:30).

Tune in tomorrow night at 10:30pm Eastern time on UFC Fight Pass for the GLORY 37 SuperFight Series and 1am eastern for GLORY 37 on ESPN3.

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Robin van Roosmalen Stripped of GLORY Featherweight Championship

Robin van Roosmalen, the former GLORY Lightweight Champion can now add former Featherweight Champion to his record as well in a shocking twist at the GLORY 37 weigh-ins. The GLORY weigh-ins are usually a bit less of dramatic affairs, with fighters making weight, flexing in their underwear and staring down their opponents without there being much to report. This time around things are very, very different.

Van Roosmalen weighed in at 143.8lbs, which is .8lbs over the Featherweight limit. When given a chance to try a second time van Roosmalen turned down the opportunity, forcing GLORY officials to work swiftly in stripping him of the GLORY Featherweight title ahead of his would-be defense against Matt Embree at GLORY 37's SuperFight Series. What that means for the fight and the title is interesting, to say the least.

If Matt Embree defeats Robin van Roosmalen he'll be awarded the GLORY Featherweight Championship, but if van Roosmalen wins neither man will walk away with the title. For Robin to reclaim his title he needs to make weight for a future fight for the title and win it all over again, creating an interesting situation for both men and some unforeseen opportunities for other fighters within the division. 

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Andy Souwer Calls Out Giorgio Petrosyan For a Third Clash

When it comes to the world famous Giorgio Petrosyan, there are a number of fights that his fans want to see, but perhaps won't ever get to see those fights happen. Fights with Masato, Buakaw and Yodsanklai are perhaps never going to happen, as most likely we won't see the rematch with Ristie at this point either. Chances of a Sitthichai showdown seem slim considering Sitthichai is with GLORY and Petrosyan is with Bellator.

But what about one of the men that Petrosyan beat to cement his status as one of the all-time greats, Andy Souwer? 

That is the exact question that Andy Souwer posed via Facebook earlier today, when he replied to Petrosyan posting footage from their last clash in K-1 MAX. Andy Souwer would like a third chance to fight Giorgio Petrosyan and honestly, who wouldn't want to see that fight? Petrosyan's next scheduled bout is W5 Grand Prix KITEK XXXIX against Artem Pashporin on February 18th and he'll probably participate in the April Oktagon/Bellator event. Other than that? Things seem rather wide open for a potential rematch with another all-time great.

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LiverKick 2016 Awards: Knockout of the Year - Guto Inocente

Continuing in the fine tradition of the LiverKick 2016 Awards, we move on to the Knockout of the Year. This was, perhaps, the most difficult category as there was such a wide array of dazzling knockouts throughout the year. Everything from head kicks to brutal punches and even spinning stuff. Hell, there was a Japanese event called KNOCK OUT where five out of the six fights ended in KO. 

Needless to say, lots of good fighters got put to sleep this past year.

Our pick for the Knockout of the Year is rather dazzling and even brutal. Both Jay and I had the same guttural reaction of "man, poor Demoreo" when it happened, because damn. Guto Inocente's spinning back kick just slept the poor guy. What made it so amazing was that it was a legitimate heavyweight doing a move that would have been brutal from a much lighter fighter, yet it was a heavyweight. Heavyweights are known for having power in their fists and even in their head kicks, but a move like this is usually left to the smaller guys.

But nobody told Guto that, nor did they tell Demoreo to expect it. 

The 2016 LiverKick Awards

For more, listen to our year-end podcast.

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LiverKick 2016 Awards: Fighter of the Year - Cedric Doumbe

When it came to selecting who the fighter of the year was for 2016, the choice seemed rather cut-and-dry. While a lot of fighters had good years -- fighters like Superbon, Sitthichai, Rico Verhoeven and others, there was only one man who rose up to prominence in meteoric fashion and did so in a way where many didn't see it coming.

You have to admit -- Nieky Holzken seemed unbeatable for a long, long time at Welterweight. Sure, it seemed like Murthel Groenhart came dangerously close to defeating him before, but Nieky still knew exactly how to pull off the victory. His hands felt unparalleled in the sport and his fight IQ is off the charts. Yet. Yet.

Cedric Doumbe's greatness snuck up on a lot of people, but heading into the Holzken fight he was able to get inside of Nieky's head, then in the ring, he was able to avoid Nieky's hands while imposing his will. It felt like the end of an era, the changing of the guard and that Cedric Doumbe's era had arrived. In fact, it's difficult not to appreciate Doumbe for his personality, his skills and his sportsmanship.

He was the very clear 2016 Fighter of the Year.

The 2016 LiverKick Awards

For more, listen to our year-end podcast.

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Glory of Heroes 6: Genesis Card for January 13th

Glory of Heroes returns at 9am Eastern time streaming on YY.com with Glory of Heroes 6, featuring their 57.5kg tournament finals. The card, featuring recognizable names like Kem Sitsongpeenong, Zhou Zhipeng, Sergio Wielzen, Maykol Yurk and more promises to deliver on action. 

Card via Kiksie.

57.5kg Tournament Semifinals

Wang Junguang (China) vs. Youshida Akira (Japan)

Yun Qi (China) vs. Hamech Hakim

68kg

Tie Yinghua (China) vs. Maykol Yurk (Brazil)

63kg

Deng Zeqi (China) vs. Stavros Exakoustidis (Greece)

67kg

Yang Zhuo (China) vs. Charles Francois (France)

63kg

Wei Rui (China) vs. Petpanomrung Kiatmoo9 (Thailand)

66kg

Qiu Jianliang (China) vs. Kem Sitsongpeenong (Thailand)

73kg

Zhou Zhipeng (China) vs. Seyedisa Alamdarnezam (Iran)

60kg

Li Ning (China) vs. Sergio Wielzen (Netherlands)

57.5kg Tournament Final

TBA vs. TBA

 

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Wu Lin Feng Card including Kaew and Kubo

Wu Lin Feng (WLF) will be holding a show this weekend Jan 14 at the Henan TV Studio 8 in Zhengzhou, Henan, China. Thanks to our friends at kiksie.com we have the full card and still hoping for a link. This card has some huge names like the current K-1 65kgs champ Kaew Weerasakreck, Yi long, Fang Bian, Yuta Kubo, Saiyok plus a great 70kg 4-man tournament featuring Enriko Kehl and also an 8-man 63kgs tournament.

Full Card

70kg Tournament Reserve Fight - Song Shaoqiu (China) vs. Hassan Toy (Netherlands)

16-man 70kg Tournament Semifinals

Semifinal 1 - Farkhad Akhmejanau (Belarus) vs. Enriko Kehl (Germany)

Semifinal 2 - Jiao Fukai (China) vs. Shamil Gasanbekov (Russia)

 

8-man 63kg Tournament Quarterfinals

Quarter Final 1 - Wang Zhiwei (China) vs. Adrian Maxim (Romania)

Quarter Final 2 - Jin Ying (China) vs. Joan Canaveral (Colombia)

Quarter Final 3 - Zhao Fuxiang (China) vs. Joey Baylon (New Zealand)

Quarter Final 4 - Liu Wei (China) vs. Tamerlan Bashirov (Russia)

 

73.5kg - Sun Weiqiang (China) vs. Saiyok Pumpanmuang (Thailand)

67.5kg - Xie Lei (China) vs. Yuta Kubo (Japan)

65kg - Wang Pengfei (China) vs. Kaew Weerasakreck (Thailand)

75kg - Yi Long (China) vs. Marco Piqué (Suriname)

 

63kg Tournament Semifinals

Winner Quarter Final 1 vs. Winner Quarter Final 2

Winner Quarter Final 3 vs. Winner Quarter Final 4

 

70kg Tournament Final - Winner Semifinal 1 vs. Winner Semifinal 2

 

80kg - Fang Bian (China) vs. Berat Aliu (Germany)

93kg - Hao Guanghua (China) vs. Oleg Primachev (Ukraine)

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First Details on February 18th Enfusion Live Card

Enfusion Live returns on February 18th with their next event, Enfusion Live #46, featuring Daniel Sam vs. Fikri Ameziane, Yassin Baitar vs. Crice Boussoukou and the rematch that everyone has been waiting for in Nordin Ben Moh against Mohammed Jaraya. The first fight between the two was perhaps the fight of the year in 2016 and expectations are extremely high for this bout.

Enfusion World Title: Ilias Bulaid vs. Zakaria Zouggary

Ismael Lazaar vs. Martin Pacas

Ibrahim El Boustati vs. Ulrik Bokeme

Enfusion League: Tafun Ozcan vs. Jonay Risco

Enfusion League: Nordin Ben-Moh vs. Mohammed Jaraya

Enfusion League: Yassin Baitar vs. Crice Boussoukou

Samantha Van Doorn vs. Georgina Van Der linden

Fikri Ameziane vs. Daniel Sam

Aziz Kallah vs. Endy Semeleer

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