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Lone Undercard Kickboxing Bout for Bellator MMA: Dynamite 1 Announced

Bellator MMA's Dynamite 1 card has shaped up to be quite an event. It'll mostly be an attraction for MMA fans, but there will be kickboxing there for those who are willing to wait for it. The main card will feature three kickboxing bouts, only one of which will feature GLORY contracted talent, that being the Light Heavyweight title fight. The other two fights on the main card are between Bellator-contracted talent, which is Paul Daley vs. Fernando Gonzalez as well as Keri-Anne Melendez vs. Hadley Griffith. 

Bellator announced today that some of the undercard fights will happen simultaneously. This will only be in effect for four bouts (meaning the span of two fights in each ring). One of those bouts will be a kickboxing bout contested in the ring under GLORY rules, but was put together by the Bellator team, it is Jose Palacios vs. TJ Arcengal. Both are Northern California muay thai fighters.


Chris Ngimbi Wins W5 Grand Prix XXX Tournament

Historically the 70kg division in kickboxing has been one of the richest in the sport, one of the two divisions that K-1 sunk time and money into, which meant that it attracted big name talent and gave hope to future stars to train hard and that they had a future. That can't be said for every kickboxing division. When we think about the 70kg division the names that will come to mind will undoubtedly be Masato, Andy Souwer, Buakaw, Mike Zambidis, Albert Kraus, Giorgio Petrosyan, Andy Ristie and Robin van Roosmalen. Sadly, a few of the champions in that division have been a bit lost to time, one of which is Chris Ngimbi. Ngimbi was the It's Showtime 70kg Champion during a one of the boom periods of kickboxing. He never quite made it to K-1 during its heyday, but he was still one of the top stars in the division. His loss to Robin van Roosmalen in the It's Showtime Fast and Furious tournament was van Roosmalen's coming out party to the top of the division and since then Ngimbi has sort of been lost in the shuffle. 

This past weekend in Russia the promotion W5 ran two four-man 71kg tournaments and Chris Ngimbi won one of them. While it doesn't herald him as one of the top in the division again just yet, it's an exciting prospect and we are looking forward to his next fight, most likely against the winner of the other tournament, Evgeny Kurovsky. 

Also on the card we saw Cosmo Alexandre once again prove that he belongs in the conversation in the 71kg area with a win over division mainstay Marco Pique. The main event saw a championship bout for the W5 Intercontinental 71kg Championship that saw Enriko Gogokhia defeat Foad Sadeghi via decision for the title. You can check out the full results over at our friend Kiksie.


Artem Levin Out -- Jason Wilnis in vs. Joe Schilling at GLORY 24

If you've been following GLORY on social media you've probably been wondering why GLORY initially announced Joe Schilling vs. Artem Levin but all of the promotional materials for GLORY 24 over the past week or so has just been of Joe Schilling. Wonder no more because Artem Levin has pulled out of the fight with Joe Schilling due to an undisclosed injury to his elbow while training. An upset Schilling was open about this last week but quickly deleted any evidence of it to give GLORY time to scramble for a new opponent. The new opponent is a very worthy Jason Wilnis in a fight that could shake up GLORY's Middleweight division.

Also announced today is an interesting fight. Pat Barry, after a long absence from the GLORY ring, will be back in Denver again. This time his opponent is someone from out of left field a bit in Karl Roberson. If that name sounds oddly familiar it is because Roberson was the man who fought Jerome Le Banner in his retirement bout and had him handily beaten before the local judges declared Le Banner the winner. Roberson showed a lot of promise there and while some fans might be seeing this as a walk in the park for Pat Barry, they should remember the last time that Pat Barry fought in GLORY that gave birth to a Light Heavyweight contender in Zack Mwekassa. 


The 11th World Karate Championships – WKO Shinkyokushin


Kyokushin Karate has always been a breeding ground for professional full-contact fighters. Nicholas Pettas, Andy Hug, Francisco Filho, Glaube Feitosa, and Sam Greco, to name a few. Not to mention Georges St. Pierre, former Welterweight Champion of the UFC.

In more recent time, Full-contact karate is beginning to have it’s own “professional” bouts, with organizations like the World Fighting Kyokushin Organization sanctioning professional tournaments for prize. However, it is at the amateur level where these fighters get their start.

Since the passing of Masutatsu (Mas) Oyama in 1994, the founder of Kyokushin Karate, there have been many splinter groups formed by former students of his. While this has been good in some ways for the spread of what is known as the “Strongest Karate”, it has also created infighting amongst groups, and many groups have become siloed within their own organizations. Thus, tournaments are only for practitioners within a specific group. This is not uncommon within martial arts when there is a passing of a founder.

Some groups however, within Kyokushin, are beginning to open its doors. Forming larger tournaments, open to different organizations. The Kyokushin World Union, a non partial organization, with leaders from different organizations, is know for this. And most recently, the WKO Shinkyokushinkai, led by former Champion Kenji Midori, has opened it’s doors to others. This is will undoubtedly help in the push to have Full-Contact Karate be accepted into the Olympic games. A long-time goal of Kenji Midori.

This coming November the WKO will be hosting their 11th World Karate Championships, in Tokyo, Japan. An open weight tournament held once every four years. What makes this one different however is that the WKO has invited fighters from other organizations to participate.

Among those invited were Knockdown fighters from the International Karate Federation (IFK Kyokushin, which is a member of the Kyokushin World Union). The IFK have selected two Russian men and Emma Markwell from the United Kingdom. British fighter Emma Markwell, from the IFK / KWU, is well known in the British Open Championship and is currently the IFK European Champion. Aside from this, Markwell will also be fighting in the KWU World Tournament and the Kyokushinkan All Japan.

Emma Markwell

Other organization fighter within the female division includes:

  • Takayo Kimura - Buritsu Kaikan, Japan
  • Yui Kikukawa - Ashihara Kaikan, Japan
  • Irina Kriazheva – KWU, Russia
  • Momoka Oba – KWU, Japan

The men’s division includes:

  • Nikolay Maslennikov – KWU, Russia
  • Naoki Morita – KWU, Japan
  • Artem Nazaretian – KWU, Russia
  • Vasily Samadurov – KWU, Russia
  • Masaki Yamaoto – KWU, Japan
  • Igor Ryadnov – KWU, Russia
  • Alexander Komanov - KWU, Bulgaria
  • Yordan Yanev - KWU, Bulgaria

Many people are eager to see fighter Valeri Dimitrov of Bulgaria. Known as the “Prodigy”. Dimitrov is the 3-time World champion in Weight Categories, 3-time European champion in open weight and 12-times European champion in weight categories. Known for his humble and quiet appearance and his extremely dynamic fighting style.

Valeri Dimitrov

Other fighters to watch include Yuji Shimamoto, 2014 All Japan Champion and Kazufumi Shimamoto, 2010/11 WKO All-Japan weight Champion.

This tournament will prove to be a large event in Japan, with spectators and participants from around the world and will create better exposure for full-contact karate. And who knows. Perhaps it will spawn the next great Professional Full Contact fighter!



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