Glory 17 Feather weight tournament Live on Spike
Gabriel Varga Vs. Yodkhunpon Sitmonchai - Gabriel Varga Wins by Unanimous Decision (30-27 all 3 judges)
Shane Oblonsky Vs. Marcus Vinicius - Shane Oblonsky Wins by Unanimous Decision (Shane scored 2 knockdowns throughout the fight)
Andy Ristie Vs. Ky Hollenbeck - Andy Ristie Wins by KO 35 seconds into Round 1 (He landed 1 left hand, wobbled Ky then finished with another left hook)
Featherweight Tournament Final - Gabriel Varga Wins by Unanimous Decision and is the Featherweight Tournament Champion (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Mirko Crocop Vs. Jarrel Miller - Mirko CroCop Wins by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Last Man Standing PPV card
Artem Levin Vs. Alex Pereira - Artem Levin Wins by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Melvin Manhoef Vs. Filip Verlinden - Filip Verlinden Wins by Majority Decision (28-28, 30-27, 30-27. Filip scores a head kick knockdown in Rd 1)
Joe Schilling Vs. Simon Marcus - Joe Schilling Wins by KO in the last 20 seconds of the EXTRA round (Right hook CRAZZZZY FIGHT!!)
Wayne Barrett Vs. Bogdan Stoica - Wayne Barrett Wins by KO 58 seconds into Round 3 (Left hook counter while Stoica came in with a flying knee)
Marc De Bonte Vs. Joseph Valtellini - Joseph Valtellini Wins by Unanimous Decision and is the new Glory Welterweight World Champ. (47-46, 47-46, 47-46)
Semifinal #1 - Levin Vs. Verlinden - Artem Levin Wins by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Semifinal #2 - Schilling Vs. Barrett - Joe Schilling Wins by Split Decision (28-29, 30-27, 29-28)
Daniel Ghita Vs. Rico Verhoeven - Rico Verhoeven Wins by Unanimous Decision and is the new Glory Heavyweight Champ (49-46, 49-46, 48-47)
Final - Schilling Vs. Levin - Artem Levin Wins by Unanimous Decision and is the new Glory Middleweight Tournament and World champion (29-26, 29-26, 29-26)
Safety, fairness and entertainment are the primary goals of Glory referee, Al Wichgers. A thirty-seven year veteran this is a man who has seen nearly everything and made the calls that people sometimes love to hate. In anticipation of Glory 17 and The Last Man Standing event, I had the pleasure of talking to Al about his career as well as about kickboxing in the United States. Currently a referee at Glory, Al has also, over the course of his career, been the man in the middle for K-1 the UFC, Strikeforce and Bellator. His knowledge of combat sports is not unfounded as he also has spent time facing off against other fighters as a boxer as well as being a practitioner of martial arts. When asked what is the key to being a good referee he cites his mantra of striving to ensure safety for the fighters as well as making sure the fight is fair and at the same time entertaining. Al also cites that knowing the fighters is a critical element in determining when a fight should be stopped. It’s a much more difficult situation being the referee with fighters you don’t know. Knowing the fighter’s limits and how they react to a punch makes the difference between ending it early or letting the fight continue. When asked about his favorite fight, he cites a K-1 bout between Hong Man Choi and Sylvester Terkay as particularly amusing if for no other reason than the sheer amazement at the size of Choi (2.18m) and the possible dilemma of how he would go about stopping such a large fighter.
His response to the inevitable criticism that comes from fans and the fight community when it comes to fight stoppages, is that it’s all about perspective. Being inside the ring and understanding the figher’s body language is what often makes the difference. It is a completely different experience viewing the fight in the arena or on television. Those vantage points don’t allow an observer to pick up on many of the cues that indicate when a fighter has had enough. Thirty-seven years of experience doesn’t hurt either. On maintaining professionalism in the ring, Al states that it’s his job and that’s the way he handles it, he also emphasizes the importance of being objective. Surprisingly enough with the amount of adrenaline pump during fights Al states that his relationships with the fighters all over the world have been relatively peaceful with some fighters even thanking him afterward for stopping the fight.
Having experience with boxing, kickboxing and MMA, Al expresses a particular love for kickboxing with its fast pace and non-stop action. Finally we spoke about whether Glory will succeed in their mission to repopularize kickboxing in the United States. On this subject he reveals optimism, having been around since the heyday of K-1, but acknowledges that efforts to interest the public in anything new is often a hard sell. Al, however appears to be in it for the long haul and the combat sports community should feel grateful to have him in their ranks.
Filip Verlinden knows the fight life. Growing up as the son of a champion kickboxer, it’s second nature to him. While some might think professionally he entered the game late, whether fighting as an amateur or a professional, he been at it as long as he can remember. It was at age twenty-six that he decided to fully commit to kickboxing as a career and it’s been nothing but up for “The Belgian Bull”. Training with his father, Wim, as well as at Hemmers Gym, Filip has captured the IFMA Muay Thai Heavyweight World Champion title in 2010 and racked up countless other wins.Now ranked at #4, Saturday, June 21, 2014, he will be a participant at Glory’s inaugural PPV event, The Last Man Standing where he will face Melvin Manhoef in the first round.
They say, “It’s the quiet ones you have to watch”, this is definitely the case with Filip. He’s not the loud guy or the trash talker, he simply comes to the ring to do his job. His strengths include strong boxing skills and speed but these are just two of the tools that he uses to help him accomplish his goal. In The Last Man Standing tournament he will enter the ring coming off a win against Israel Adesanya at Glory 15 in Istanbul and he feels optimistic. He is a renewed man, now fighting at middleweight Filip feels he has found his niche. Maintaining his weight, he states has been no problem and actually that he feels more comfortable at 185. Whether he remains in the fight world steadily climbing the ranks at Glory, he states there is nothing else he would rather do. Even if he were not fighting professionally, Filip states that he’s sure his job would be something related if nothing more than fighting at an amateur level or being a trainer. Focused is the zone he is currently in.
Both he and his trainer, Nick Hemmers state he has worked very hard to prepare for this fight and his mind is honed strictly on Manhoef, his first opponent. His plans for any of the other fighters will be based solely on how the other matches develop. Like most fighters, Filip states that he has no particular opponent that he would like to face and will do his best to prepare for whoever he is matched up with. Filip shares the enthusiasm of all the fighters and staff at Glory regarding this PPV event as well as Glory’s goal to make kickboxing as popular in America as it is in Holland and Japan.
To his fans around the world, Filip expresses extreme gratitude for their support and that he will continue to put his best foot forward both inside the ring and outside as an ambassador for the sport. If you are ever looking to meet Filip, you might catch him watching a musical which he states he enjoys immensely!
They call him “No Mercy” and that is exactly what you will get in the ring. Melvin Manhoef, a man whose professional career has spanned nearly two decades takes the stage at Glory’s inaugural PPV event, The Last Man Standing on Saturday, June 21, 2014 at The Forum. Since 1995, Melvin Manhoef has delivered brutal blows in both MMA and kickboxing also showing the world that he is dangerous in nearly every weight class. Who has he fought? A better question probably would be who hasn’t he fought? In the kickboxing ring he has faced the likes of Spong, Bonjasky, Leko, Karaev and Slowinksi. Although in all of these match-ups he has not been the victor, one thing is certain, a match involving Melvin promises to bring heavy hits and hardcore action. It is well and widely known that Manhoef is a knockout artist and does it very well. For those who know Melvin Manhoef, they are well aware that he is dangerous from all angles, having brutalized his opponents with left hooks, right hooks and knees. He is legend. In anticipation of his debut with Glory I had the opportunity to talk to Melvin about his past, present and his vision for the future.
SW: Melvin, you made it here to Glory and this very exciting event. How do you feel?
MM: I think I am ready. I had very good training and I am prepared.
SW: Is there anyone in particular that you would like to fight?
MM: No, I’m a fighter and I will fight whoever they put in front of me. All of the guys are dangerous in the tournament but I feel prepared to fight any of them.
SW: You are known for having a very aggressive style and have had some brutal knockouts in kickboxing and MMA. Do you have any prediction about how your fight with Verlindin will end?
MM: I like the knock out, but we will just see, but of course I like the knockout! My goal is to be the champion.
SW: For your training, you were training at Mike’s Gym or somewhere else?
MM: Well I train at Mike’s Gym sometimes but I also have my own gym.
SW: Many fighters have their own gym is this your eventual plan to do as maybe you move away from fighting in the ring, spending more time as a coach?
MM: Well I do that now in my gym and I won’t be fighting until the point that I can’t see. Right now, I feel good and don’t think it’s any problem for me to fight. No injuries right now, so I’m ready.
SW: Kickboxing or MMA, which do you prefer?
MM: I have a lot of experience in both. With kickboxing, it’s very fast and there’s a lot of action. I like MMA too, it’s just a different style of fighting.
SW: Glory is doing some very exciting things, revitalizing kickboxing in America.
MM: Yes, and I am happy to be a part of this. I thank Glory for having me at this event, it is very big. June 21st will be very good for the fans.