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The Official LiverKick.com Rankings

  • Published in Rankings

LiverKick Rankings Updated on 9/28/2016

Heavyweight (Per 9/16)

1 Rico Verhoeven
2 Benjamin Adegbuyi
3 Ismael Londt
4 Jahfarr Wilnis
5 Fabio Kwasi
6 Guto Inocente
7 Jamal Ben Saddik
8 Anderson Silva
9 Hesdy Gerges *
10 Andrei Gerasmichuk v

Light

Heavyweight (Per 9/16)

1 Artem Vakhitov
2 Saulo Cavalari
3 Zack Mwekassa ^
4 Mourad Bouzidi v
5 Danyo Ilunga v
6 Mladen Kujundzic v
7 Ionut Iftimoaie *
8 Jorge Loren v 
9 Andrei Stoica v
10 Luis Tavares
Middleweight (Per 9/16)

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

1 Nieky Holzken
2 Artur Kyshenko
3 Cedric Doumbe
4 Murthel Groenhart
5 Hicham El Gaoui
6 Raymond Daniels
7 Yoann Kongolo
8 Zoltan Laszak *
9 Karim Ghajji
10 Mustapha Haida v
Lightweight (Per 9/16)

1 Superbon Banchamek *
2 Sitthichai
3 Robin van Roosmalen v
4 Giorgio Petrosyan
5 Marat Grigorian ^
6 Wu Xuesong ^
7 Tayfun Ozcan ^
8 Anatoly Moiseev *
9 Josh Jauncey ^
10 Jomthong Chuwattana *
Featherweight (Per 9/16)

1 Kaew Weerasakreck
2 Ilias Bulaid *
3 Hidaeki Yamazaki v
4 Masaaki Noiri v
5 Minoru Kimura v
6 Wei Ninghui *
7 Abdallah Ezbiri *
8 Kim Minsoo *
9 Gabriel Varga
10 Massaro Glunder v

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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Badr Hari vs. Tony Gregory Official For It's Showtime, May 14 in Lyon, France

  • Published in Kickboxing

The Bad Boy is Back!They say that the news never sleeps, and in that regard, neither do I, apparently. Keeping Dutch hours leads you to find pretty cool stuff in the wee hours of the morning, and it turns out that Badr Hari's return opponent has been announced by It's Showtime, officially, as has the rest of the Lyon card and it is lining up to be absolutely incredible.

The main event features the return of the Bad Boy, Badr Hari! Badr will be coming back after a year layoff due to some nagging legal issues, and his return opponent has been hotly debated for the past few weeks or so. The long-standing rumor was that the fight between Gokhan Saki and Badr Hari that was originally airmarked for the Amsterdam ArenA show would materialize in Lyon, but instead local kickboxer Tony Gregory has been called back into action to fight Badr Hari. This is a great return bout for Badr Hari, as it gives him a chance to hone his skills and gives him a bit of a cushion before heading back into the deep waters. Tony Gregory retired from kickboxing a few years ago to pursue a boxing career, but after disappointing results he finds himself back in the kickboxing mix, this time against one of the most dangerous fighters in the kickboxing world.

Tyrone Spong steps back into the It's Showtime ring, this time at Heavyweight as he'll take on Igor Mihaljevic, a Croatian Heavyweight. Igor provides a stiff challenge at Heavyweight for Spong, who is right now training with King Mo Lawal in Holland. Spong looks to cement his spot as one of the elite Heavyweights in the world by taking the fight to Igor here. Paul Slowinski's jam-packed year doesn't stop just yet, as he will take on the man that is more of a beast, the Romanian Daniel Ghita. Ghita looks to be heading into his fight with Hesdy Gerges in a few weeks, and a fight against Slowinski will provide another challenge, but will Slowinski just be a stepping stone for Ghita?

Then we move down from Heavyweight to Middleweight, as It's Showtime's 70kg MAX division fills out the rest of the card, with two-time K-1 MAX World Grand Prix Champion Giorgio Petrosyan takes on a fighter that last year put on one of the best fights imaginable against Mike Zambidis, Chahid Oulad El Hadj. This is a huge fight for Chahid, and for Petrosyan it is just another day at the office. With It's Showtime planning a 70kg MAX tournament in July and both men rumored to be involved, a win here is huge for momentum.

It's Showtime's 70kg MAX champion defends his crown finally, as Chris Ngimbi looks to ward off Willy Borrell. Ngimbi's title win has been disputed by some fans, so a strong performance by Ngimbi can help solidify his spot in It's Showtime this year and help build momentum for the MAX tournament in Russia this July. Rounding out the card is Abder Penda facing off against Marat Grigorian at 70kg, with both men looking to leave a big impression on the international kickboxing scene.

I'll say this, It's Showtime hasn't disappointed yet and keeps marching forward for what looks to be a banner year. I know many fans are upset with the lack of K-1, but It's Showtime is really churning out the big cards. [source]

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LiverKick.com Podcast Vol. 22: GLORY Middleweight Champion Joe Schilling

  • Published in LK Podcast

Podcast

Ha! Just when you thought you were done having to listen to me (@dvewlsh / @LiverKickdotcom) ramble on about Kickboxing, you were wrong. This time I'm joined by a very special guest by the way of GLORY 10 Middleweight Champion Joe Schilling as we discuss his big victory at GLORY 10 as well as how he felt going into the tournament and how his life has changed after it. Joe also weighs in on the GLORY 11 card coming up this week and that his next fight will be at GLORY 12 New York.

Don't forget to check Joe out on Facebook, Twitter and to keep tabs on Can't Stop Crazy.

{enclose lk_ep22.mp3}

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Sem Schilt Retires

  • Published in Glory

Semmy Schilt Retired

Over the last few months there have been various reports that four-time K-1 World Grand Prix Champion, 2012 Glory Grand Slam and Glory Heavyweight Champion Semmy Schilt will no longer be fighting. The rumors were first centered around his participation in future tournaments, as after his victory on New Year's Eve in 2012 he stated that he would not participate in future tournaments, although it was quickly brushed off. Since then there has been talk about him fighting Gokhan Saki with the Heavyweight title on the line, but there has also been talk of Schilt no longer fighting at all.

Since last night LiverKick has received numerous reports from reliable sources that Semmy Schilt is retired, effective immediately. The decision was apparently not an easy one for the Hightower, who was instructed to retire from his medical team due to a heart condition that was discovered. This marks the retirement of what may be the greatest Heavyweight Kickboxer of all time, with five big tournament victories under his belt and numerous world championships. Schilt was also a pioneer in the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, making his debut in Pancrase in 1996, fighting in both the UFC and PRIDE over the course of his career.

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Signs Point to Badr Hari Returning to K-1

  • Published in K-1

I feel like we have reached critical mass for the rumor of Badr Hari making his K-1 return. Ever since Badr Hari was talking about retirement, I've been telling people that for the right price and the right opportunity, Badr Hari would kickbox again. I strongly felt that it would be under the K-1 banner as there is a certain level of prestige that comes along with fighting for K-1, even if the company is presenting itself as a whole new company. To top it off, the money that is on the table for the K-1 World Grand Prix is a huge $1 million USD. That is a lot of money.

Over the past few weeks we've been getting a lot of reports on the goings on of Badr Hari, but felt like out of respect to some of our sources, we'd hold off. The reports have been interesting, to say the least. Reports are coming from New York from the last few weeks that not only was Badr Hari in town and working on his hands, he was working on his knees and kicks as well. We've heard from enough excited New Yorkers who've seen Badr Hari around or kicking the pads to know this isn't made up. Then there was talk of Badr Hari being back at Mike's Gym and training as well.

Now the rumor is circulating that Badr Hari has signed a new contract with It's Showtime which would place him in the K-1 field. Remember, for right now, this is a rumor, but one which we believe will materialize in short order.

UPDATE: Bloodstain Lane confirmed with Mike Passenier this morning, this is 100% true.

UPDATE 4/17: Lane retracted, saying he misunderstood Passenier. LiverKick stands by the evidence gathered that no matter what, it points to Badr Hari's return.

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LiverKick Podcast - Volume 10: K-1 Returns, Again

  • Published in LK Podcast

K-1 is back and so are we. After a month without hearing Rian Scalia (@rianscalia) and myself (@liverkickdotcom / @dvewlsh) talking about Kickboxing, we are at it again. The K-1 World Grand Prix in Los Angeles happened and here are our thoughts from after the show.

Join myself and Rian Scalia as we prattle on for about 40 minutes about K-1.

{music}podcast{/music}

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LiverKick.com Podcast - Volume 12: K-1 Final 16 and Lion Fight 7

  • Published in LK Podcast

Yet another weekend where the Kickboxing world gives us something of note to digest. This weekend was the K-1 World Grand Prix Final 16 in Tokyo, and there was a lot to talk about. On top of that, we talk about Lion Fight 7 and more. Join Rian Scalia (@rianscalia) and myself (@LiverKickdotcom / @dvewlsh) as we run through the K-1 World Grand Prix Final 16, a look at the field moving forward and other stuff.

{music}podcast{/music}

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LiverKick Podcast - Volume 9: Battle of the Press Releases

  • Published in LK Podcast

Yes, you read that correctly; the LiverKick podcast is back once again. We've taken it upon ourselves to only give this to you when the time is right, and seeing as though we are finally getting some announcements from both K-1 and Glory, the time felt about right. This has truly been the battle of the press releases, for better or for worse. Both companies have been releasing press releases with announcements, big and small, and it is up for you to decide which appeals to you.

Join myself and Rian Scalia as we prattle on for about 40 minutes about the latest in the Kickboxing world.

{music}podcast{/music}

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Shin on Shin Series: Episodes 1 - 4

  • Published in Kickboxing

Our bud Steven Wright has always made it clear how much he loves the sport of kickboxing. He makes his money by helping out some of the best MMA fighters in the world to hone their standup, but his passion has always been kickboxing. For about as long as I've known Steven he has been talking about his documentary. Steven is a lot like me in the regards of he always has a lot going on, but he always stuck to his guns; he was going to release his epic kickboxing documentary at some point. 

So we waited and waited and I at times wondered if he had forgotten about it. He hasn't, not at all. Here is the first four episodes of Shin on Shin Series, with the focus on Europe. 

Shin on Shin Series: EP1 The Fall, Hated Dominance, Unappreciated Brilliance

Shin on Shin Series: EP2 Alexey Ignashov The First Next Big Thing, Badr Hari The People's Champ

Shin on Shin Series: EP3 The Wages of the Wars, In Honor of those we lost...

Shin on Shin Series: EP4 They Call it a War

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Japan Gets Embarrassed By Shoot Boxing's S-Cup

  • Published in Kickboxing

There’s a belief in the fight community that when you go to Japan that you need to be prepared for anything. You could say that for any fighter going into another country where they are to fight local fighters they have their backs against the wall and fear the “hometown decision,” but in Japan it always seems amplified. A part of that is the marriage of professional wrestling and professional fighting that has existed for a very long time in the world of “kakutougi.”

In fact, if you were to look at Shoot Boxing’s S-Cup event there was a professional wrestling bout on the card featuring New Japan Pro Wrestling Junior Heavyweight sensation Kota Ibushi against former DDT Pro Wrestling colleague Michael Nakazawa. It was originally labeled as an “exhibition match” under Shoot Boxing rules and was scheduled to be against Kazushi Sakuraba, but that fell through thanks to Metamoris 5. 

That should set the tone for you.

This S-Cup was one of the few that I’ve seen more than the usual fans excited over, which was in part due to the card that they put together. Mosab Amrani, Pornasae, Hiroaki Suzuki, Michiko Omigawa, Hiroki Shishido and American Muay Thai fighter Kevin Ross were all a part of the tournament, while legend Andy Souwer and Shoot Boxing hero RENA were in Super Fights. 

It felt like one of the bigger shows that Shoot Boxing had put on in a very, very long time and then Shoot Boxing went and put on a shameful display for all of the world to see. 

The draw for American fans was muay thai standout Kevin Ross being in the tournament. Ross went into the tournament against his toughest test by the way of former Sengoku, DREAM and UFC alumnus Michihiro Omigawa. Omigawa was a champion Judoka who rose to prominence in the Japanese MMA scene and after his UFC stint gave a shot at Shoot Boxing. Much like Toby Imada in the past, his grappling skills were able to help him against seasoned kickboxers and 2014 was his second attempt at Shoot Boxing gold.

By all accounts Omigawa was winning the first round handily thanks to his throws, which score heavily under Shoot Boxing rules, but there was a clash of heads that led to a nasty cut on Omigawa's face. In the second round the cut was a major factor, leading the ref to stopping the bout. The referee awarded the fight in favor of Ross due to the stoppage, while backstage there was a different story and Shoot Boxing organizers informed Ross that the fight was being rendered a No Contest and that he would not continue on in the tournament. 

The rules are a bit unclear at a time like this, where it isn’t clear who was at fault, or if it was accidental. What the referee most likely saw and ruled was that the cut was due to Omigawa’s own “negligence” (section 10) and ruled it in favor of Ross. Shoot Boxing might have been arguing that it was due to both men, which would make things a lot muddier. The truth of the matter is, the referee awarded Ross the win in the ring and any time the decision is reversed backstage it will be a tough sell to anyone that it was on the up-and-up.

If that wasn’t frustrating enough, then there is the story of Zakaria Zouggari. Don’t know who Zakaria Zouggari is? Neither did we, but we sure as hell know now. Rob Emerson of MMA fame (fame?!) was scheduled to take part, but at the last minute was unable to secure a visa, which left Shoot Boxing in a bind and called up relative unknown Zakaria Zouggari to fill in for Emerson in a reserve bout. 

Zouggari defeated Shoot Boxing’s resident punching bag Bovy Sor. Udomson via cut stoppage in round two and, thanks to the Kevin Ross/Omigawa shenanigans, was called upon to fight in the tournament moving forward. 

That led to a fight with internationally-renowned Houcine Bennoui and for this amazing display.

Seriously. God damn.

So this unknown would move onto the finals. According to Andy Souwer after the event Zouggari literally got off of the plane, dropped his bag off in his hotel room then hopped on a bus and headed to the event without time to rest, eat or get acclimated. This was the man who went on to the finals against 2013 65kg S-Cup Champion Hiroaki Suzuki. This is where things went from bad to worse. Zouggari clearly had the fight won after three rounds, only for an extension round to be ordered. When that was too close a SECOND extension round happened where Suzuki was finally able to score a TKO over Zouggari and it looked like Shoot Boxing’s hand-picked champion had won again.

It was almost like they weren't trying to hide the favoritism and that they really, really wanted Suzuki vs. Omigawa in a rematch of last year's finals. 

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