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LiverKick Rankings Update: April, 2017 -- Not Much Changes

The LiverKick Rankings are usually updated quarterly, but honestly, not much was changing so we held off until the end of this month and even then, not much has really changed.

Heavyweight is literally untouched. Light Heavyweight was pretty much untouched until this past weekend when Michael Duut, who felt like a wild card in the first place, fell to Fred Sikking, with Sikking taking a coveted spot in the top five thanks to that knockout and everyone else getting bumped down. Middleweight saw minor, minor changes thanks to Alex Pereira defeating Israel Adesanya.

At Welterweight Karim Ghajji defeated Zoltan Laszak for the Bellator Kickboxing Welterweight Championship, earning his number ten spot back and knocking Zoltan out of the rankings. At Lightweight Jonay Risco's win over Tayfun Ozcan gave him another chance at the rankings while Ozcan dropped down. Featherweight is perhaps where the most movement has happened thanks to the recent K-1 tournament that Wei Rui won. Ren Hiramoto's performance leading into the finals also saw him added to the rankings, as did Gonnapar's recent run. That meant that a few solid names had to drop and some were dropped completely, including GLORY's last Featherweight Champion in Robin van Roosmalen. That means for the first time a GLORY champion (or at least should-be champion) is not represented in one of the weight classes. It is not indicative of van Roosmalen's talent (as he clearly belongs in this division as one of the top fighters), but more that at one point many of the top names at Featherweight did compete in GLORY but left for K-1 Japan, Kunlun and other, outside organizations. Thanks to how competitive the division is, GLORY's division has been completely wiped off of the face of the rankings.

We should also note there has been talk of establishing Strawweight rankings to reflect the competitive realm that is 55kg at the moment. 

LiverKick Rankings Updated on 4/25/2017

Heavyweight (Per 4/25)

1 Rico Verhoeven
2 Benjamin Adegbuyi
3 Roman Kryklia
4 Jamal Ben Saddik
5 Ismael Londt
6 Mladen Brestovac 
7 Jahfarr Wilnis 
8 Fabio Kwasi 
9 Guto Inocente 
10 Anderson "Braddock" Silva 

Light

Heavyweight (Per 4/25)

1 Artem Vakhitov
2 Saulo Cavalari
3 Zack Mwekassa 
4 Mourad Bouzidi 
5 Fred Sikking *
6 Michael Duut v
7 Danyo Ilunga v
8 Roman Kryklia v
9 Fabio Kwasi v
10 Mladen Kujundzic v
Middleweight (Per 4/25)

1 Jason Wilnis 
2 Simon Marcus 
3 Artem Levin 
4 Alex Pereira ^
5 Israel Adesenya v
6 Filip Verlinden v
7 Joe Schilling 
8 Dustin Jacoby 
9 Cedric Doumbe 
10 Fang Bian 
Welterweight (Per 4/25)

1 Cedric Doumbe 
2 Nieky Holzken 
3 Artur Kyshenko 
4 Murthel Groenhart
5 Alexander Stetsurenko
6 Dmitry Valent 
7 Hicham El Gaoui 
8 Raymond Daniels 
9 Yoann Kongolo 
10 Karim Ghajji *
Lightweight (Per 4/25)

1 Superbon Banchamek
2 Sitthichai
3 Robin van Roosmalen 
4 Giorgio Petrosyan
5 Marat Grigorian 
6 Cedric Manhoef 
7 Wu Xuesong 
8 Jonay Risco *
9 Dylan Salvador 
10 Tayfun Ozcan v
Featherweight (Per 4/25)

1 Kaew Weerasakreck
2 Qiu Jianliang 
3 Wei Rui *
4 Ren Hiramoto *
5 Gonnapar Weerasakreck *
6 Ilias Bulaid v
7 Hideaki Yamazaki v
8 Masaaki Noiri v
9 Minoru Kimura v
10 Melsik Baghdasaryan *

Legend:

* - New Addition

^ - Moved Up

v - Moved Down

Rules:

The LiverKick.com rankings are living rankings that have existed in one form or another since 2009. After the initial rankings were tabulated, they moved on from there. If one fighter beats a fighter ranked above them, they take their place. If a new fighter is introduced, that means that said fighter is ranked above whomever he beat, moving everyone else down. 

Fighters can drop or move up in the rankings without losing or winning, depending on the division in general. After 12 months of inactivity, or if a retirement is announced, fighters can be removed from the rankings. These rankings are also at our discretion.

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LiverKick Podcast for April 20th - GLORY 40 Preview, Bellator Kickboxing and More

With GLORY 40 just on the horizon and Bellator Kickboxing coming off of two big shows it felt like the right time for the SS LiverKick Podcast to set sail again. This time we got it done more than a day before the show we were previewing, truly a herculean feat if there ever was one. So join myself and Jay Jauncey as we run down the GLORY 40 card, spend less time complaining about four-men tournaments than we've ever done before and perhaps even get some insight into what went into Josh Jauncey's preparation for his upcoming fight seeing as though Jay is his coach. 

Maybe not, though. That's for me to know and for you to find out by listening to the LiverKick Podcast. 


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LiverKick Week in Review March 27: GLORY 39 recap, Jordan Coe and More

This is the LiverKick Week in Review, a new audio segment that I'm giving a test-run to where I recap the previous weeks' news in kickboxing. This felt like a good week to start coming right after GLORY 39 and some other news during the week. And yes, my allergies are destroying me this week.

For those of you looking to support Jordan Coe's family, there is a crowdfunding campaign ongoing right now with a tremendous outpouring of support already.


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LiverKick Podcast March 24 - GLORY 39 Preview, K-1 Japan Talk and More

GLORY 39 is this weekend, on Saturday even, which for you dearest readers (and listeners) is but a solitary day away. That means that both Jay Jauncey and myself have returned to talk about the upcoming GLORY event as well as opine about those glory (no pun intended) days of Japanese kickboxing. 

The LiverKick Podcast's revival revival has a fourth episode, folks. 

K-1 Japan just held arguabaly the card of the year thus far, are planning a killer 70kg tournament, Kunlun still exists and is doing stuff, Enfusion just had a card and a lot more. We also discuss the marvelous public resource that is Grabaka Hitman.


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LiverKick Podcast Feb. 21 2017 - GLORY 38, Enfusion 46 and W5 KITEK

Don't tell me that we weren't gonna do this again, because it's the third episode of this iteration of the LiverKick podcast.

This time out Jay and myself get to talking about the latest in the kickboxing world, including Enfusion Live 46 featuring Jaraya vs. Ben Moh II, Bulaid vs. Zouggary and more. We also talk about W5's KITEK show, which included Giorgio Petrosyan taking home another world title and where he goes from there. Then, to cap it off, we look at this week's upcoming GLORY 38 event and how GLORY is announcing cards way in advance. 


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LiverKick 2016 Awards: Fight of the Year - Jaraya vs. Ben Moh

There were a ton of great fights in 2016, so it was difficult for Jay and myself to pick the fight that best encapsulated what was 2016. We wanted to select what was an exciting fight, but not sloppy or too much of a brawl. Part of what makes kickboxing so exciting is when fights can not only be fun to watch, but technical and fast as well. 

So while Danyo Ilunga vs. Michael Duut and a number of other fights seemed like solid contenders, it was pretty easy to rest on Mohammed Jaraya vs. Nordin Ben Moh from Enfusion Live on February 26th of 2016. Both guys went toe-to-toe and the fight was simply insanity. I urge you to watch it below, if you haven't already. They also have a rematch coming up, which means that 2017 should start off with yet another top contender.

The 2016 LiverKick Awards

For more, listen to our year-end podcast.

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LiverKick Podcast January 15, 2017: GLORY 37 Preview and 2016 Awards

Oh yes, it's back. The LiverKick Podcast is back for the second episode of this iteration where Jay Jauncey and myself talk about kickboxing and hopefully keep you, our fine readers and listeners, happy. 

Last time we talked about GLORY: Collision, rankings, the state of kickboxing and how much we missed Japanese kickboxing. It was kind of a blast, let me tell you. Now here we are, back again, this time with talk about the kickboxing-related stuff that went down at RIZIN at the end of the year, we do a full preview of the GLORY 37 Los Angeles card and even bring back the LiverKick Year-End Awards! 

So no, you aren't really going to get fully-fleshed out predictions on these fights, but you'll get us talking about the fighters, where they're at, what we expect to see and why we are excited about each fight. This leads us to having an in-depth discussion about how these one-night, four-man tournaments probably aren't worth doing anymore and how the SuperFight Series has continually been the best part of GLORY events since they signed on with UFC Fight Pass. 

We close out the show with our LiverKick Year-End Awards, which we'll be writing up in more detail for each award over the coming days and week(s). Excuse the fact that I have a pretty nasty head cold and have been running on four hours of sleep for the past few months due to the twins, but such is life. Enjoy.

We've also done away with SoundCloud for the embed since we got a few complaints. Hopefully the embedded player ins't too much of a bummer. The podcast should be showing up on iTunes shortly, I'll insert the link to that when it's up.


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LiverKick Rankings December 2016: A New Welterweight King

The cursed year of 2016 is drawing to a close and this seemed like an opportune time for LiverKick to update its rankings.

The LiverKick rankings date back to 2010 when Fraser Coffeen and myself began ranking fighters across multiple divisions, with the only way to move up the rankings (or being added to them) being defeating a ranked opponent. Therefore, these rankings are based upon who beats who, not talent, potential or anything else. They are also current, meaning that past wins or losses are not taken into account when ranking a fighter.

For the year-end update there was an unusual amount of movement since our previous update at the end of September. The top heavyweights stayed the same and we fixed an odd error on our part where we somehow neglected to rank Roman Kryklia after an early 2016 win. We rectified that situation, which did set some other parts of the division into chaos, but there were also wins and losses that shook things up, such as Jamal Ben Saddik's defeating the top GLORY contender in Ismael Londt and Mladen Brestovac defeating would-be top contender Jahfarr Wilnis. Drops happened accordingly and Andrei Gerasimachuk has been dropped from the rankings after no wins of consequence to the rankings.

Light Heavyweight didn't change that much, but there are three new names in the mix, which is noteworthy. Michael Duut defeated Danyo Ilunga, securing himself a spot in the top five, which sadly drops Ilunga to 6. Roman Kryklia plowed through K-1's European 95kg Championship tournament including wins over Fabio Kwasi. Kwasi earned himself a spot with a win over Mladen Kujundzic while Jorge Loren dropped. Ionut Iftimoaie was dropped as his last win was his retirement fight and his ranking was merely honorary for the spot he earned if he hadn't retired. Andrei Stoica and Luis Tavares drop out due to attrition.

Middleweight sees a robbery rectified and things return to where they were prior to the last update, with Filip Verlinden's loss to el Boustati overturned and literally everyone gets bumped up and Fang Bian returns to his rightful spot on the rankings.

Welterweight saw a huge shake-up with only Murthel Groenhart holding onto his #4 spot and everyone else shifting thanks to Cedric Doumbe's win over long-reigning champion Nieky Holzken. Artur Kyshenko dropped simply because of the reshuffling, not due to any sort of loss. Dmitry Valent defeated Hicham El Goaui to earn a spot in the top ten, while Alexander Stetsurenko picked up a win over him, earning him a spot and everyone else simply shuffled, Mustapha Haida losing his #10 position and Karim Ghajji being bumped.

The biggest shake-up at Lightweight came when Cedric Manhoef defeated Wu Xuesong, which caused some downshifts and Christian Baya's win over Josh Jauncey bumped the young Canadian from the list for the time being. Dylan Salvador lands on the rankings, though, which is long overdue.

Featherweight saw one huge jump in China's very, very good Qiu Jianliang getting his just due in the rankings when he defeated Enfusion's posterboy of Ilias Bulaid. Everyone shifted down from there, including Massaro Glunder and Gabriel Varga was at 10, but was defeated by Robin van Roosmalen. This serves as only one of two categories where the current, reigning GLORY champion does not hold the top spot in a division. If anything, it is indicative of how deep the talent pools are for both Lightweight and Featherweight in Japan and China right now.  

LiverKick Rankings Updated on 12/29/2016

Heavyweight (Per 12/16)

1 Rico Verhoeven
2 Benjamin Adegbuyi
3 Roman Kryklia *
4 Jamal Ben Saddik ^
5 Ismael Londt v
6 Mladen Brestovac *
7 Jahfarr Wilnis v
8 Fabio Kwasi v
9 Guto Inocent v
10 Anderson "Braddock" Silva v

Light

Heavyweight (Per 12/16)

1 Artem Vakhitov
2 Saulo Cavalari
3 Zack Mwekassa 
4 Mourad Bouzidi 
5 Michael Duut *
6 Danyo Ilunga v
7 Roman Kryklia *
8 Fabio Kwasi *
9 Mladen Kujundzic v
10 Jorge Loren v
Middleweight (Per 12/16)

1 Jason Wilnis 
2 Simon Marcus 
3 Artem Levin 
4 Israel Adesenya 
5 Filip Verlinden ^
6 Alex Pereira ^
7 Joe Schilling ^
8 Dustin Jacoby ^
9 Cedric Doumbe ^
10 Fang Bian *
Welterweight (Per 12/16)

1 Cedric Doumbe ^
2 Nieky Holzken v
3 Artur Kyshenko v
4 Murthel Groenhart
5 Alexander Stetsurenko
6 Dmitry Valent *
7 Hicham El Gaoui v
8 Raymond Daniels v
9 Yoann Kongolo v
10 Zoltan Laszak v
Lightweight (Per 12/16)

1 Superbon Banchamek
2 Sitthichai
3 Robin van Roosmalen 
4 Giorgio Petrosyan
5 Marat Grigorian 
6 Cedric Manhoef *
7 Wu Xuesong v
8 Tayfun Ozcan v
9 Dylan Salvador *
10 Anatoly Moiseev v
Featherweight (Per 12/16)

1 Kaew Weerasakreck
2 Qiu Jianliang *
3 Ilias Bulaid v
4 Hidaeki Yamazaki v
5 Masaaki Noiri v
6 Minoru Kimura v
7 WEi Ninghui v
8 Abdellah Ezbiri v
9 Kim Minsoo v
10 Robin van Roosmalen *

Legend:

* - New Addition

^ - Moved Up

v - Moved Down

Rules:

The LiverKick.com rankings are living rankings that have existed in one form or another since 2009. After the initial rankings were tabulated, they moved on from there. If one fighter beats a fighter ranked above them, they take their place. If a new fighter is introduced, that means that said fighter is ranked above whomever he beat, moving everyone else down. 

Fighters can drop or move up in the rankings without losing or winning, depending on the division in general. After 12 months of inactivity, or if a retirement is announced, fighters can be removed from the rankings. These rankings are also at our discretion.

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KNOCK OUT Releases Entire First Show Via YouTube

After kickboxing promotion KNOCK OUT began to pick up steam after their last event, they are looking to reach a wider audience than simply the Japanese fans that witnessed the event either live or via their YouTube channel later on. The promotion has gone ahead and released the entirety of the event via YouTube and now have created an English language channel for western fans to view the fights in an easier fashion. I know that a lot of you checked it out when they updated their original YouTube, but this is a great effort from the new promotion to reach out to fans outside of Japan.

Genji Umeno vs Sirimongkol PK Saenchaigym

Tenshin Nasukawa vs Wanchalong PK Saenchaigym 

Takuya Imamura vs Youichiro "Jienotsu" Nagashima

Yosuke Morii vs Yodwandee Nitisamui

Haruaki Otsuki vs Starboy

Keisuke Miyamoto vs Eisaku Ogasawara

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LiverKick Podcast Revival: December 15th, 2016 GLORY: Collision Fallout and More

So. It's been a while since LiverKick has done a podcast, hasn't it? In fact, I don't even want to know how long it's been. That's okay, though, because we made the conscious decision to jump right back into it and the fallout from GLORY: Collision seemed like the perfect opportunity for that. All it took was near-perfect timing for Jay and I, a time when our kids were asleep and not being crazy, then we were a go. 

There was a lot to talk about, that's for sure. The topics range from Badr Hari vs. Rico fallout, talk about the logistics, fights and disappointments of GLORY: Collision, GLORY's future in 2017 and less of a focus on the United States and then veered into other European kickboxing topics like SuperKombat's new television deal, Enfusion Live's push for top-level Thais but having a broadcast platform that nobody wants to pay for and then we get to Asia. Both Jay and myself miss Japanese kickboxing, but try to give Chinese kickboxing a chance, so we try to put our finger on what exactly Kunlun is missing to make it recapture that feel that old K-1 had.

This, of course, sent us down the rabbit hole. The strict runsheet that I had keeping us to an hour was thrown out the window and we delved into why old K-1 was so great, how their production was an important part to creating the big-match feels and everything in between. This includes talking about K-1 Japan being the best pound-for-pound promotion in the world, but still not old K-1 and even a brief reprieve into Japanese pro wrestling history to explain why KNOCK OUT's parent company, Bushi Road, could, in fact, be the savior of Japanese kickboxing after they were able to rehabilitate New Japan Pro Wrestling. 

We had fun, so we hope that you have fun listening. 


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