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It's Showtime Still Might Run Amsterdam ArenA in October

If you weren't clear on what happened with the Amsterdam ArenA event that It's Showtime usually holds every May, we covered exactly what happened in our exclusive interview with Simon Rutz. We talked with Rutz about some of the financial problems and how K-1 really put a wrench in the whole ordeal. On top of that, Mayor van der Laan of Amsterdam has been a bit, well strict on fights happening in his city, defiling what is a otherwise pristine place for Christian worship (note: sarcasm). This left the kickboxing world without a gigantic show in one of the biggest fight cities in the world.

Well that might not be all that we hear of this. There were rumors they might try to make the show happen in October, but we heard no more of that after January after the Lyon, France show was booked with Badr Hari in action, automatically making it a huge show.

We are waiting to hear if It's Showtime will run in Australia this year, by the end of the month, and apparently, we'll also hear about It's Showtime running in the Amsterdam ArenA in October within the same time frame. That is very exciting news, and means that It's Showtime really means business. It could also mean that K-1 could be back in the fold soon.

Stay tuned for more.

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The 10 Greatest Muay Thai Fighters According To Me: 1 and 2

2 Apidej Sit Hrun: How many fighters can say they shattered both of his opponents arms in the SAME fight and forced him to retire? I can think of 1, and that would be Apidej Sit Hrun. He's broke many of arms and is probably the hardest kicker in the history of all combat sports. However he wasn't purely a kicker, he was also a successful international boxer, and held titles in that sport. He was named fighter of the century by King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who is still the current King so he's seen his share of fighters. 

Highlight:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErGQK7LtJ90

1 Samart Payakaroon: Not only is this man the best Muay Thai fighter of all time (IMO) but he's the best striker of all time period. If it wasn't for Dieselnoi Chor Thunasukarn he would have won fighter of the year in 1981, 1982, and 1983. But since he lost to Dieselnoi he only won the awards in 81, and 83. After establishing himself as a legend in Muay Thai he took his talent too international boxing and in a few years became the WBC Super Bantamweight champion of the world. After a title defense he lost the belt, and decided to come back to Muay Thai. So he's leaves Muay Thai as the best, goes to boxing and becomes the best(at Super Bantamweight) in that sport for a short while, and then comes back to Muay Thai, a sport he hasn't competed in for years and is still the best! Thats just crazy to me. Not only does he come back and win fighter of the year again in 1988, but he's even better than he was in the early 80's. No fighter ever had his skills near the end of his career. The movement, the technical precision, the stamina was just unparalleled. He's the only fighter to have won fighter of the year 3 times, and had he not gone to boxing he would probably be looking at 5 or more. 

Samart vs. Hapalang:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GoxaeGVv3os

Highlight:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VLD7hEzZEs

 

10. Namsaknoi Yudthagarngamtorn

9. Sangtienoi Sor Rungrot

8. Boonlai Sor Thanikul

7. Poot Lorlek

6. Sakmongkol Sithchuchok

5. Kaensak Sor Ploenchit

4. Dieselnoi Chor Thunasukarn

3. Saenchai Sinbimuaythai

2. Apidej Sit Hrun

1. Samart Payakaroon

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The 10 Greatest Muay Thai Fighters According To Me: 4-3

4 Dieselnoi Chor Thunasukarn: "The sky piercing knee kicker" (Why is it that Asians come up with awesome nicknames, and none of this Assassin crap?) is my favorite fighter of all time. Without any doubt whatsoever I believe he was the most dominant clinch fighter in the history of Muay Thai. At 6'3 and and only 140 pounds he was a scary and freakish looking man. He was the 1982 fighter of the year, and held Lumpinee's 140 pounds title for 4 years straight without losing. In that same year he fought Samart Payakaroon who was looking to win back-to-back fighter of the year awards, but it was the much bigger Dieselnoi who came out on top. It was quite possibly the biggest fight in Muay Thai history, yet very few people have seen the fight. Its nowhere to be found on the internet, and collectors and historians in Thailand are said to have the fight, but will only sale for a very high price. After he dueled Samart it was tough for him to get any fights, and it was months later until someone stepped up to the plate on fought him. He too got the knee treatment. After fighting infrequently over the next 2 years he decided to retire because there were no more challengers for him. I can't blame his opponents, just watching Dieselnoi work the pads makes me hurt. 

Dieselnoi on the pads:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8dIsPTWyic

Dieselnoi vs. Johm Moncayo:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAxcPE_0eXw

3 Saenchai Sinbimuaythai: Saenchai now goes by Sinbimuaythai as he recently left 13 coins, and took up the Sinbimuaythai gym name as most fighters do. Saenchai is the epitome of consistency. He won fighter of the year back in 1999, and then again in 2008, and is still the best fighter in Thailand. Saenchai's style is completely different from any other fighter. When watching him its just a weird experience. He seems to do things nobody else can do with little effort. In recent years he's generally been the smaller fighter in the majority of his fights, yet he still seems to be stronger than everybody else. The only times he's really given a tough match are when he fights tall clinch fighters like Petchboonchu F.A Group, and Saketdao Petchpaithai. However back in 2009 he fought both of those men over the course of 1 fight. He fought Petchboonchu for the first 3 rounds, and Saketdao for the final 2 rounds and still won the fight. And its not like Petch, or Saketdao are chumps, they have both been major champions, and have beaten Saenchai before. Dubbed the "king of the rematch" Saenchai lost in 2007 to Orono Vor Petchpun, and just a few months later when they fought again Saenchai made the right adjustments and made a great fighter look foolish. He's knocked out Nong-O Sit Or twice, who imo is a top 25 fighter of all time, and he's beaten a slew of other great fighters. If he continues to be so consistent and smart he could move higher up on this list. 

Saenchai highlight:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jmK2zusIlA

Saenchai vs. Khem Sitsongpeenong:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8GOnPwX_X4

The top 2, tomorrow

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Hiroya off to MMA

HiroyaHiroya, the one time "next Masato" of K-1, is planning a move to MMA.  Nightmare of Battle reports that Hiroya will begin training MMA this year, possibly traveling overseas to train starting in the summer.  The 19 year old will not entirely give up on his K-1 aspirations for the moment, but will look to broaden his options by taking part in MMA.

If you've only recently started watching K-1, you may not even know Hiroya, but the young fighter was, just a few years ago, a major part of the company's plans.  At just 15 he started competing in various special rules fights for K-1 MAX.  The plan was for fans to watch this young fighter develop from a very early age so that by the time he was older and a champion, fans would be strongly connected with him and he would be able to step into Masato's shows as the face of K-1 MAX.  It didn't work.  As Hiroya continued to fight in K-1, it became clear he was having trouble against his increasingly hand selected opponents.  The result was an increasing sense of annoyance from international viewers, and apathy from Japanese fans.  In 2008, Hiroya won the Koshien tournament, but when he failed to repeat that accomplishment in 2009 (losing to Masaaki Noiri, who has since proven to be a legitimate, top level talent), it effectively ended both his run, and K-1's promotion of Koshien.  Hiroya took time off to finish high school, and in the 15 months since that loss has only taken one fight - a largely one sided decision loss to Yuta Kubo in November.

Hiroya has obviously been passed by many of his Koshien classmates including Noiri, the Urabe brothers, and Kizaemon Saiga - all fighters who now stand on their own as more than just teenage fighters, while Hiroya remains something of a spectacle name.  At 19, you certainly can't say his time in kickboxing is done, but for him to make a name in this sport, he will need to get clear of the stigma he currently has, and will need to reinvent himself somewhat.  A move to MMA could be a big help in that regard.

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