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GLORY 25 Live Results

Today is Friday, November 6th and GLORY 25 is upon us. GLORY 25 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting cards that we've seen all year thus far with Robin van Roosmalen vs. Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong headlining the event for the GLORY Lightweight Championship. For the fans in Italy, though, the feature attraction is the return of the doctor as Giorgio Petrosyan takes on Josh Jauncey. To top it off there will be a welterweight contender's tournament, the GLORY Featherweight title will be decided and Ilunga takes on Vakhitov. This is quite a day of fights. 

So join us here on LiverKick for all of the action. For those here in the United States, to watch the SuperFight Series live you'll have to do so through EverSport for $10. The SuperFight Series begins at 1:30pm eastern. As for GLORY 25, while it will be airing on tape delay on ESPN2, to watch it live on ESPN3 you'll need to be a cable or satellite subscriber and to check out WatchESPN at 4pm eastern. WatchESPN is also available on iOS, Android, Amazon Fire Stick, Chromecast, Xbox, Roku and more for those that are so inclined. 

GLORY 25

GLORY Lightweight Championship: Robin van Roosmalen(C) (R5 - Unanimous Decision) Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong-- This was academic. In fact, Sitthichai didn't even get out of second gear in this fight. He dominated, did exactly what he wanted to. Robin fought valiantly and landed a good deal of punches, but Sitthichai was just the better fighter.

I wrote that before the decision was rendered. The decision was, somehow, for Robin van Roosmalen. Literally the worst decision that I've ever, ever seen. These judges should never be allowed to judge another fight ever again. They just robbed Sitthichai.

Welterweight Tournament Finals: Murthel Groenhart (R3 - Unanimous Decision) Karim Ghajji -- Man, what a damned fight. First round started off well enough, but then Murthel Groenhart turned up the heat and this turned into a Mike's Gym slaughter like we've seen with other fighters from Mike's Gym. Ghajji went down and things looked grim. Yet, he hung out. I commented that Murthel was going to gas out and he came out strong in the beginning of round two until he began to fade. From there he was still throwing strikes but spending a lot of time in the ropes while Ghajji went to work. Round three was more of the same, but Murthel came back strong and was throwing some big shots. Great, great fight.

Giorgio Petrosyan (R3 - Unanimous Decision) Josh Jauncey -- What is there to say? Giorgio Petrosyan is back and he looked tremendous. The same Doctor that we've all known and loved for years avoiding just about everything that Jauncey threw at him while landing his legendary counters. I can't stress enough how good that Jauncey looked here, though. He was right there with Petrosyan avoiding just about every big shot thrown at him. The problems came for him when he came in too close to Petrosyan and Petrosyan was throwing those close knees and short punches.

Welterweight Tournament: Karim Ghajji (R3 - Majority Decision) Yoann Kongolo -- Interesting fight. Ghajji was a bit more careful in there while Kongolo was incredibly active all fight. But Kongolo wasn't doing a lot of damage. Ghajji scored a mildly controversial knockdown in round one and that really sealed the fight for him. Kongolo won round two by being more active, but the third round was incredibly close, with Ghajji potentially edging things out with a few great punch combinations. Solid fight, could have gone either way.

Welterweight Tournament: Murthel Groenhart (R2 - TKO [cut]) Nicola Gallo -- Wasn't really much here. Murthel controlled the fight early on and opened up a cut. Once the ref and doctor checked on it that was that.

GLORY 25 SuperFight Series

GLORY Featherweight Championship: Serhiy Adamchuk (R5 - Decision) Gabriel Varga(C) -- This was an absolutely ugly fight. There's really no way around that. Both men are sound technicians and the fight that we got included Varga throwing a few strikes, then plowing headfirst into Adamchuk who would then land a few shots and headlock him before the ref broke it up. Literally five rounds of that. Both men are tremendous talents, but this was ugly.

Artem Vakhitov (R3 - Unanimous Decision) Danyo Ilunga -- My god, what a fight. Danyo Ilunga at times doesn't seem like he has it all together, but in this fight we really saw one of the best performances by Ilunga that we've seen in a long time. This fight was all about Ilunga's length and kicks against Vakhitov's punch combinations. Ilunga was holding strong early on, but Vakhitov came roaring back with a combination with his hands that should have put Ilunga down, but didn't. The second round was slower, a bit more deliberate, but Ilunga looked to be landing the better strikes. The third round is where Vakhitov really laid into his punches here. Ilunga looked to be in control, but Vakhitov threw everything at him. Tremendous fight by both men, nobody has anything to be ashamed of.

Vittorio Iermano (R2 - TKO [Cut]) Samir Boukhidous -- Interesting fight. Boukhidous seemed like the better fighter, landing the cleaner strikes and controlling the ring. Yet. Iermano landed a big knee in round two that connected on the forehead of Boukhidous and opened up a pretty gnarly cut. Once the ref had it checked out the fight was called.

Stefano Bruno (R2 - TKO) Hosam Radwan -- Radwan looked pretty good, but his defenses left a lot to be desired. Bruno landed a lot in the first round, both men technically went down but the ref didn't call it. The second round saw Bruno just working Radwan over, Radwan going down three times but the ref completely missing the second time somehow. The third knockdown was all that the ref needed to see before stopping it. Solid win by Bruno.

Anatoly Moiseev (R3 - Unanimous Decision) Teo Mikelic -- While Mikelic was game throughout this fight, this fight was all Moiseev. Moiseev was controlling most of the action, having Mikelic backpedaling throughout the fight. A knockdown in second round helped Moiseev to run away with the fight, but Mikelic was too banged up in R3 to make any sort of comeback. Good showing by Moiseev.

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Has the Lightweight Division Passed Petrosyan By?

Whenever someone – probably more likely an athlete than a postmaster – disappears for an extended period of time (via injury or otherwise), they inevitably face on their return directly or indirectly questions of whether they still have it, has the competition passed them by, were they really as good as we thought they were.

After Petroysan’s last Glory appearance concluded with him in perfect position for a snow angel, it is difficult not to contemplate, especially since he veered so close to invincibility. It is the breeding ground of speculation - as soon as things tumble out of an order, the gates open up.

Yet, behind these questions seems to be more than just the usual hysteria. Dave elucidated several key observations in his article Wednesday, “the Return of the King.” In his first two bouts back, the basic framework of Petrosyan’s genius was present, except the speed and rhythm that once governed it did not reflect its previous form, giving his opposition an unusual opportunity, to hit him. 

Regression rarely does one wonders and if he is not just working his way back, it is reasonable, not outrageous, to consider Petrosyan potentially assuming a different role in the new iteration of the lightweight division rather than the kingpin.  It may not even matter with the emergence of Josh Jauncey, his opponent tonight, and Sittichai Sittsongpeeong, van Roosmalen’s opponent tonight for the Glory Lightweight Championship, who are unique and pose challenges unlike many of his former foes. 

They’re also younger and witnessed the dissolution of the myth; the fatal uppercut that felled him like a tree cleared to make room for another suburban oasis that may be replanted somewhere else but could hardly be expected to be the same again. In their eyes, he is not the fighter van Roosmalen or Kiria battled, whether he actually still is or not. 

He never will be. 

Questions have to be asked because they’re the only way to the answer. 

At some point, though, they become like annoying contest winners who get the chance to walk the red carpet or escort their favorite artist onstage and they get caught within the crossbeams of excitement and acting as if they do this every day, to the point they almost detach themselves from the experience of living it.

Does Petrosyan still have it? Has the lightweight division passed him by? Was he ever as good as we thought he was?

Giorgio Petrosyan, formerly of the awe-inspiring 71-1-1 record, will return today at Glory 25 against Josh Jauncey, with the questions assuredly in tow, probably dancing off-beat to his entrance music. 

With luck they will get too handsy with someone at ringside and have to leave, at which point we can just enjoy the fight.

It is Giorgio Petrosyan.

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Kountermove Your Best Bet for GLORY 25

GLORY 25 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting GLORY events of the year, featuring a top-to-bottom stacked card headlined by the GLORY Lightweight Championship being on the line between champion Robin van Roosmalen and challenger Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong. Oh yeah, and the co-headliner? That’s Giorgio Petrosyan returning to the GLORY ring to take on GLORY’s up-and-comer from Canada in Josh Jauncey.

Oh yeah, and ESPN will be playing GLORY 25 live at 4pm on ESPN3 and airing it on ESPN2 later on at 1:30am thanks to a last minute deal that GLORY was able to put together with ESPN this week. Pretty cool, right?

So of course Kountermove is getting in on this. How could they not? Those two Lightweight battles alone are a huge deal, then there is the Welterweight contender tournament where the winner gets a shot at Nieky Holzken at GLORY 26. Even the undercard is stacked, the SuperFight Series headlined by GLORY Featherweight Champion Gabriel Varga facing tough challenger Serhiy Adamchuk in what should be a tremendous battle.

Let’s get down to brass tacks here; Kountermove is running a bunch of games for GLORY 25 and you are looking for some insight into these fights. Here’s how I’m seeing it right now.

Easy Money

Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong ($5000) -- What is this? Betting against the champion, especially one like Robin van Roosmalen who has proven himself time and time again, including a win over Andy Ristie? On the surface this might seem like blasphemy, especially for fans who have seen van Roosmalen fight before. He is, without a doubt, one of the best in the division, so betting against him should never be easy money.

The thing here is that Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong is not only really good, he’s downright incredible. He made former GLORY Lightweight Champion Davit Kiria look like a chump in a tournament bout, knocking Kiria out with a knee to the body that put him down and out. Davit Kiria had literally never been knocked out before. Ever. Kiria is known as being one of the toughest guys in the division and win, lose or draw not the type to go down to anything, but he went down to Sitthichai’s knee and body-kick heavy style.

Simply put, Sitthichai’s style is the type that gives Dutch style fights a lot of trouble and Robin van Roosmalen is the posterboy for the Dutch style in the division right now. Sitthichai’s ability to sneak knees through defenses and to throw aggressive, heavy body kicks until his opponent’s arms are sore enough to be unable to defend with them anymore is enough to cause anyone problems.

The Underdog

Artem Vakhitov ($4400) -- Danyo Ilunga is great fighter and he’s proven himself time and time again. The thing is, I’m never quite sure that Danyo Ilunga is living up to his full potential in the ring. Somewhere along the way he showed amazing skill, technique and ring awareness throughout his career, but outside of a few bouts he’s never really been able to piece it all together to become the champion that he could be.

Both Ilunga and Vakhitov have recent losses to the newly-crowned GLORY Light Heavyweight Champion, Saulo Cavalari, but Vakhitov showed a lot more against Cavalari and some even saw him winning that fight. Vakhitov has fought against some of the best in the world and his only losses are to the likes of Simon Marcus, Artem Levin, Alexander Stetsurenko and of late, Saulo Cavalari. Each one of those names is one of the bigger names in the kickboxing world right now, all but Cavalari choosing to compete in Middleweight as opposed to Light Heavyweight. Vakhitov has simply shown more in the past few years and feels like the more complete fighter than Ilunga does at present time.

Too Close to Call

Giorgio Petrosyan ($4800) vs. Josh Jauncey ($4800) -- Petrosyan vs. Jauncey is a battle of youth vs. experience and everything that comes with that. Petrosyan ruled over the Lightweight division with an iron fist for many years before Andy Ristie knocked him out back in 2012. Petrosyan has been riddled with injuries over the past few years, most notably his right hand. That right hand seems to get injured in just about every fight and many are wondering if Petrosyan’s day might have come and gone by now.

Jauncey has shown a lot of fire, skill and that he is a very adaptable fighter. His lone loss inside of the GLORY ring is to Sitthichai, but in a tournament setting preparing for a fresher Sitthichai is a tall task. Jauncey was the one who called for this fight, so it seems that he feels ready for the challenge that Petrosyan brings to him -- especially in Italy of all places.

Petrosyan hasn’t looked exactly the same in his three bouts since his return earlier this year, but that could have just been ring rust. The reality here is that whomever wins this fight will hold an immediate claim to challenge for the title. The pressure is all on Petrosyan here, who is in front of a hometown audience looking to prove himself to the world once again and show that he’s still the same fighter that won three huge, prestigious tournaments to become the most dominant fighter of this generation.

The Rest

Welterweight Tournament -- I almost placed Karim Ghajji ($4900) as my underdog pick for this card here because I feel that he’s my early favorite heading into this tournament. His first fight is against Yoann Kongolo ($5300) and Kongolo’s GLORY debut is still fresh in the minds of many. Yeah, he looked good and yeah, Ghajji’s three previous GLORY fights are all losses, but you know what? He went back to the drawing board and he’s on a crazy seven-fight win streak right now outside of GLORY, including a win over one of the top fighters in GLORY’s Welterweight division in Alexander Stetsurenko, the last man that he lost to at GLORY 13 back in 2013.

Murthel Groenhart ($5200) seems to have himself a clear path to the finals against Nicola Gallo ($4700), but he just didn’t look great in his last fight against Chad Sugden and while I see him getting past Gallo, I’m not sure how he handles Ghajji. That being said, either Ghajji or Murthel could easily take this tournament without much surprise.

Featherweight Championship -- Gabriel Varga ($4900) is the favorite here against Serhiy Adamchuk ($4700) but not by much. This fight is pretty close to being “too close to call,” but at the same time Varga has shown very little holes in his game. Adamchuk has been incredibly impressive in his last two GLORY bouts, but Gabriel Varga’s style is the kind that can give any fighter trouble.

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Badr Hari Announces Retirement

If today wasn't crazy enough, right? 

Badr Hari posted on social media yesterday that he was going to shock the world today and after losing a long legal battle in the Netherlands last week it appears that Badr Hari is ready to hang up the gloves after one last fight. Hari's announced retirement comes in the face of an increasingly difficult market for freelance fighters like Hari. To get the money that he's been asking for he's been forced to fight on the fringes in bigger shows organized primarily with him as the sole focus, but that has come at a cost of public image. Badr Hari's only truly relevant opponent in the past few years has been Ismael Londt, with Londt dropping Hari once before Hari recovered and knocked him out. 

Facing more jail time and a difficulty finding fights this seems like the right move for the Moroccan, who claims that he wants to have one last fight this year and for it to take place in his home country of Morocco. Hari said today that he would like to retire to spend more time with his young daughter. [source]

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