GLORY 25 will be going down this Friday live from Monza, Italy. Now, look, I know that everyone is waiting with baited breath over what GLORY's new television deal will be and how it will impact this event. For now, just like previous events, the GLORY SuperFight Series is available to purchase and view within the United States. GLORY 25 will not be. The same restrictions in ex-Yugoslavia nations as always, you know who you are.
So take that as a sign, people.
The SuperFight Series begins at 1:30pm Eastern time. GLORY 25 is 4pm Eastern. The price is $9.99 USD per.
In just two days time GLORY will be hosting GLORY 25 Milan. The two big featured fights of the evening are in GLORY's packed lightweight division, one fight will decide the GLORY Lightweight Championship, while the other hosts a returning hero in Giorgio Petrosyan against a young upstart of Josh Jauncey. One bout will declare the king of the division, at least in theory, while the other fight is set to just be another fight within the division.
Many see van Roosmalen vs. Sitthichai as a foregone conclusion, which is astounding considering just how good van Roosmalen is and how much he's proven himself over the past few years. If anything, that speaks to just how skilled Sitthichai is and where the division is at today. Media throughout Italy is regarding Petrosyan vs. Jauncey as the main event -- and for good reason.
Giorgio Petrosyan was the undisputed king of the division for years. In fact, he looked unbeatable for a very long time. The first time that there was any sort of dent in his armor was at GLORY 12 when he was staring up at the lights for the first time in his career, with Andy Ristie standing over him in celebration. Before then he was the king and now, almost three years later, Petrosyan is looking to reclaim his throne in the division.
Two K-1 World MAX Championships, the 2012 GLORY 70kg Slam Champion, Petrosyan was the best of the best and his hit list showed that. Souwer, Askerov, Kraus, Stevelmans, Khem, Zambidis, Sato, Yamamoto, Sudsakorn, Cosmo, HINATA, Roqueni, Kyshenko, Kiria, Pinca, Hollenbeck and van Roosmalen are all on Petrosyan's hit list over his epic reign in the division. Every last one couldn't figure out the puzzle to defeating Giorgio Petrosyan.
FightLand's Jack Slack has been quick to dismiss the fights that Petrosyan has taken since his comeback this year and while I understand looking at Erkhan Varol and saying that he isn't on Petrosyan's level, but Enriko Kehl, the last K-1 World MAX Champion, has been rising to prominence over the past few years, and Xu Yan has been a formidable name in the world of 70kg for a few years now. Wins over them has given us an idea of where Petrosyan stands.
Maybe my eyes have been playing tricks on me, but Petrosyan has looked... mortal against Kehl and Xu Yan.
Television cameras don't always pick up everything that Giorgio Petrosyan does because he's a man who operates within the subtleties of the sport. At times he has completely parried a shot only for a bad camera angle to make it look like it grazed him, but Xu Yan seemed to be finding the mark on occasion on Petrosyan, which is very not Petrosyan. Was Petrosyan simply getting his sea legs back after so long of an absence, or has the King fallen from grace?
In a way, this fight with Jauncey is incredibly important for the division as a whole. For right now we know where Josh Jauncey stands. Josh Jauncey is an incredibly talented fighter who has proven himself to be one of the very best. Against Sitthichai there were some holes, absolutely, but from what we've seen of Jauncey he doesn't make the same mistake twice. A second fight with Sitthichai things would look different, at least they should. When GLORY came to him with a few different fights there was almost no question about which one he'd take; he'd fight Giorgio Petrosyan... In Italy.
On the surface, that is insanity. No judge in front of a hometown crowd that will be cheering for Petrosyan will give Jauncey the nod, especially not against someone with such a pedigree and legendary status. Yet Jauncey jumped on the fight. Did they see those same holes in these last few fights that I saw? If so, they are going to be looking to capitalize on them and once and for all dethrone the king.
Sitthichai becoming champion feels like an inevitability. If van Roosmalen is able to fend off the hungry young Thai this time will he be able to hold out again in the future? Sitthichai has a rocket strapped to his back and he won't stop until he's at the top, that much we are all sure of, but who will be there to challenge him at the top? That is the question and that question could be answered at GLORY 25 in Petrosyan vs. Jauncey. I feel like Cor Hemmers is overlooking Petrosyan right now and his importance within this division. The winner of this fight is, without a doubt, in my eyes the #1 contender for the GLORY Lightweight Championship and I'm pretty sure that most agree with that. There doesn't need to be a disappointing tournament missing one or both of these guys to declare a contender, the winner here has a built-in narrative heading into a fight with either Robin or Sitthichai.
Giorgio Petrosyan is looking to reclaim his crown and Josh Jauncey is looking to prove that not only should he not be overlooked anymore, but that he's the new generation within this division and that he's ready to carry it for the next few years.
This card, like always, will be streaming on EnfusionLive.com, but on a slight delay of November 10th.
Enfusion Live #33 Martigny, Switzerland 7.11.2015
Local start time 22.30 (21.30GMT)
1. 3X3 -61Kg
Janique Avanthay (Switzerland) Vs Amandine Falck (France)
2. 3X3 -75Kg
Shkodan Veseli (Albania) Vs Adelino Boa Morte (Portugal)
3. 3X3 -85Kg
Ulrik Bokeme (Congo) Vs Cheick Sibide (France)
4. 3X3 -72.5Kg
Pedro Barros (Switzerland) Vs Andriy Unhuryan (Russia)
5. 3X3 -70Kg
Christophe Pruvost (Switzerland) Vs Jonay Risco (Spain)
6. 5X3 -75Kg
Rafael llodra (France) Vs Diogo Calado (Portugal)
Enfusion World Title -75Kg