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Tag: K-1

Spike TV and K-1 Announce Partnership to Broadcast Live Kickboxing Events in 2012-2013


(Oh yes. Oh God, yes. / Video via slafy)

In their continuing efforts to stick it to the UFC, Spike TV has inked a deal with world-reknowned kickboxing organization K-1 to broadcast four live events on Spike.com through the end of this year, and a series of live events on the cable channel in 2013. As K-1 CEO Doug Kaplan explained in a press release distributed yesterday afternoon, “Spike is the perfect television home and stage to introduce our K-1 warriors and the fast-paced, aggressive style of K-1 fighting to fight fans across America.” Spike’s K-1 broadcasts next year will complement their coverage of Bellator Fighting Championships, though air-dates and times for the 2013 shows have yet to be announced.

Rumors of K-1′s demise have plagued the promotion since last year, but an American showcase on a channel that reaches nearly 100 million viewers could resuscitate the brand. Could K-1 be a “gold mine” for Spike, as Joe Rogan once suggested? After the jump, the full text of the press release, including more details on this year’s Spike.com/K-1 broadcasts.

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Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ Filipovic Still Wants to Fight MMA


(To prove he still has “it,” Cro Cop conducted the entire interview from this position)

Fighters have to fight, we suppose. Ultimately, that’s the reasoning kickboxing and MMA legend Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic gave when he recently told USA Today that he wants to return to MMA despite retiring from the UFC after his most recent loss to Roy Nelson at UFC 137 in 2011.

“If you ask me, when I look deep into my soul, of course I would like to fight MMA again,” Filipovic revealed. “People don’t get it. Martial arts is my life.”

Cro Cop has lost his last three MMA bouts, all in the UFC, by either KO or TKO, and was 4-6 in his ten total UFC bouts. Cro Cop also fought two dozen times in the now defunct Pride promotion out of Japan, where he took part in one or two fights that you may remember. Filipovic is still fighting for the kickboxing organization where he first made his name, K-1, and most recently picked up a second round knockout victory over Loren Javier Jorge at K-1 Rising, which we’ve added after the jump for your enjoyment.

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[VIDEO] Mirko Cro Cop Scores KO Victory Over Loren Javier Jorge at K-1 Rising


(Who wants to learn how to maker Tater Tots the *fun* way?) 

There are two schools of thought on how a given fighter should end their career in the UFC. The first, and perhaps most honorable method, involves a fighter going out on their shield, fighting until they can fight no more, so to speak. The second involves a fighter talking a ridiculous amount of trash, losing a fight in embarrassing fashion, and throwing a hissy fit backstage that only enforces their bosses decision to fire them. Thankfully, Mirko Cro Cop chose the former method (though he perhaps stuck around a couple fights too long), and after suffering a trio of (T)KO losses to Frank Mir, Brendan Schuab, and Roy Nelson, was ousted from the UFC.

This is not to say that we got any enjoyment out of witnessing the Croatian’s demise, but more so that we were happy to see Cro Cop come to the realization that his career in mixed martial arts had gone as far as it could go. His career in kickboxing, however, has seemingly yet to come to a crashing halt, as Filipvoic managed to pick up a rather impressive second round knockout victory over Loren Javier Jorge at K-1 Rising earlier today in Madrid, Spain.

Cro Cop looked better than we’ve seen him in quite some time, unleashing a few beautiful, snappy head kicks that were nothing short of nostalgic. But the finishing blows did not come as a result of his well-documented kicks, but rather from a series of uppercuts that dropped Jorge a two occasions, the latter of which he could not recover from. Cro Cop looked quick, efficient, and more than anything else, eager to finish the fight when presented the opportunity. Again, it was a very nostalgic experience for both Cro Cop and those who had the privilege of catching the fight.

Take a trip down memory lane after the jump. 

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K-1/DREAM Parent Company FEG Files for Bankruptcy


(Behold: The most fabulous bounced-check in combat sports history.)

The writing was on the wall when they couldn’t pay their fighters anymore, but it looks like Japanese kickboxing and MMA promoter FEG might be one step closer to officially closing up shop. Sherdog is reporting that the combat sports promoter best known for K-1, DREAM, and the now-defunct Hero’s brand has declared bankruptcy after eight-and-a-half years of operation:

“Long-beleaguered combat sports giant Fighting and Entertainment Group (FEG) has officially declared bankruptcy, according to a report by private credit research firm Teikoku Databank. First published Wednesday by Yahoo.co.jp, the Databank report claims that FEG began the process of declaring bankruptcy on May 7 in Tokyo District Court. No figures indicating the extent of FEG’s debts were revealed,” Sherdog‘s Tony Loiseleur writes.

“Though K-1’s brand rights were transferred to Japanese real estate firm Barbizon, Inc. in January 2006, FEG continued to promote the event under their banner. After the purchase and closure of Pride Fighting Championships by Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta in 2007, FEG partnered with former Pride production staff in the form of Real Entertainment to produce the Dream series.”

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New Hong Kong-Based K-1 Owner Partners With It’s Showtime; LW and HW GPs Salvaged


(See Zuffa, co-promotion can work.)

It’s Showtime announced today that it has signed a new deal with the new K-1 owners that will see both the lightweight and heavyweight tournaments continue as well as fighters contracted to the Dutch kickboxing organization participate on some of the previously Japanese-owned organization’s planned cards.

FEG sold the struggling promotion to Chinese businessman Michael Kim, who promptly attempted to distance it from the company’s spotted past by changing the name to K-1 Global (how original). Kim also atoned for the sins of his forefathers by agreeing to pay each of the It’s Showtime fighters previously owed money by FEG 50 percent of their outstanding pay as a signing bonus with his new promotion.

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Exclusive Interview: Mark Hunt Talks His Fighting Past, Present and Future

By CagePotato Contributor Shawn Smith


(What has two thumbs and loves to bang? This guy)

For over a decade Mark Hunt has been a polarizing figure in the world of mixed martial arts. At 5 foot 10 and 260 lbs, he’s not your average heavyweight, but that hasn’t stopped him from putting on many exciting performances during his career. His hefty build and nonchalant demeanor are misleading. Rest assured though, Hunt is a dangerous fighter who wholeheartedly loves the fight game.

Exploding onto the K-1 scene in 2001 Hunt defeated Jerome Le Banner, Stefan Leko, and Francisco Filho en route to becoming the promotion’s World Grand Prix champion that year. A short time later, he decided to try his hand[s] at mixed martial arts. Following a submission loss to Hidehiko Yoshida in his MMA debut, Hunt rattled off five victories in a row against the likes of PRIDE middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva, fearsome Croatian striker Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic, and Japanese MMA pioneer Tsuyoshi Kohsaka.

These days “The Super Samoan” calls the UFC home. After falling on hard times in the last days of PRIDE and early days of DREAM, Hunt, who dropped his first UFC bout to Sean McCorkle, has turned things around by putting together two victories in a row inside the Octagon against a pair of formidable opponents in Chris Tuchscherer and “Big” Ben Rothwell.

The UFC recently announced that Hunt will be returning to Japan to take on French striker Cheick Kongo in what should be a stand-up war of attrition at UFC 144 in February.

We recently had the opportunity to speak with the seasoned veteran about his past present and future in the sport.

Check out what he had to say after the jump.

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The Buzzards Are Circling K-1


(Rutz and K-1 head Tanikawa pretending things aren’t so bad)

Apparently K-1 is in the death throes.

After a year of speculation about if and when the revered kickboxing and MMA promotion would pack it in, it appears that the financially troubled organization may be living on borrowed time.

IT’S SHOWTIME president Simon Rutz shed some light on the current state of the former Japanese kickboxing powerhouse who has made more headlines the past couple years due to the fact that it hasn’t paid many of its champions like Alistair Overeem and Bibiano Fernandes.

According to Rutz, K-1 officials are scrambling to find potential investors an/or a buyer for the struggling franchise, which he says has run out of money. As such, they have decided to cancel the finals of the K-1 heavyweight grand prix after reportedly telling fighters a week ago that they would only be paid a portion of money owed to them and that their participation in the tournament would have to come at a reduced price.

Check out Rutz’s state of the K-1 union address after the jump.

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Hong Man Choi Charged With Assaulting Female Patron at His Bar


(“Please don’t eat me….Please don’t eat me.”)

Hong Man Choi is in a bit of hot water with the police in his hometown of Gwangjin, Korea where he stands accused this week of assaulting a female customer at a pub he owns.

According to police reports, the 7-foot-2, 367-pound K-1 veteran punched a woman in her 20s in the head on Saturday after she refused to pay her tab, which she claimed was too high for what she consumed. After a brief argument over the inflated amount of her bill, Choi allegedly became incensed after the woman cursed at him and attacked her.

News of the booking was first reported by the Korea Times.

The South Korean fighter, who has not competed in two years since his DREAM 11 loss to Minowaman in October 2009, posted a message on his website denying punching the woman.

“She verbally insulted me. I just could not take it anymore. I just pushed her a little bit. I swear that I never punched her,’’ he wrote.

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Einemo Headed Back to UFC; Bahadurzada Could Soon Follow According Golden Glory Head Bas Boon


(The team during easier times.)

According to Golden Glory head Bas Boon, fences have been mended between the UFC and his management group and fight team — so much so that the promotion is bringing back heavyweight John Olav Einemo and is in discussions to sign K-1 standout Siyar Bahadurzada as well.

“John Olaf Einemo is now back with the UFC and Siyar Bahadurzada just got offered a UFC contract,” Boon wrote in an email received by CagePotato earlier today.

The email went on to state that Golden Glory’s relationship with the UFC is good and that contrary to media speculation, neither side is guilty of any wrongdoing during the recent negotiations to sign former Golden Glory star Alistair Overeem to a contract with the Las Vegas-based promotion.

“I want to make the following statement to clear up any speculation.The UFC did nothing wrong and neither did Golden Glory management – when signing up Alistair Overeem with the UFC. It is public knowledge how the UFC does business,” Boon explained. “ALL correspondence between the UFC and Golden Glory was also shared/CC’d to Alistair Overeem who finally made a decision to sign the agreements. There will be a lot of rumors like in thet recent past when 4 Golden Glory fighters were released from the UFC and Strikeforce and that was the so-called end of GG’s relationship with the UFC. Not long after this rumor Golden Glory made a mega deal with Alistair Overeem signing with the UFC.”

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Watch Badr Hari’s Documentary and Then Decide Whether Or Not He’s a Crazy Motherf*cker


(Video courtesy of YouTube/Undubately)

If you’re unfamiliar with who Badr Hari is, watch this documentary and familiarize yourself with kickboxing’s answer to Mike Tyson.

“The Golden Boy” is candid and honest about his issues with anger inside and outside of the ring in the short doc that aired last week on Dutch TV. I don’t know what makes a crazy, out of control person who stomps on downed opponents and knocks people who piss him off out in the street so polarizing, but it’s stories like these that I’d read about or watch any day of the week.

If you’re like me and the show left you wanting to hear more from Hari about himself, you’re in luck. Michael Schiavello announced during the HDNet broadcast of last weekend’s Titan Fighting event that he recently sat down with the beleagured Dutch-born Morroccan fighter to shoot an episode of  his acclaimed “The Voice vs.” series and that it was the most intense interview he’s ever done. The Voice vs. Badr Hari will air June 24 at 10 pm ET on HDNet.

Check out parts 2 and 3 of the documentary after the jump.

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