Lion Fight XXI to Debut in California at Pechanga Resort Casino

Lion Fight 21 PosterLion Fight XXI
Pechanga Grand Ballroom
Friday, March 27, 2015

Airs live on AXS TV
10:00 p.m. ET │ 7:00 p.m. PT

America’s Poster Boy Kevin Ross goes to even the score with Japanese WBC Super Lightweight World Champion Tetsuya Yamato.

Fight NightCO-MAIN EVENT:
Tiffany Van Soest vs. Chajmaa Bellekhal

FEATURED FIGHTS:
Victor Saravia vs. Sam Poulton
Nick Chasteen vs. Clement LaCroix
Malaipet vs. Ben Yelle
Josh Shepard vs. Jose Lopez

Pechanga Resort Logo

 

Ticket on sale at Pechanga Resort & Casino
or by calling the Pechanga’s Box Office at 877-711-2946

Lion Fight XX
Foxwoods Resort Casino
Friday, February 20, 2015

Lion Fight 20 Poster

End Story MarkTickets for LION FIGHT XX are on sale now starting at $25 and are available at the Foxwoods’ Grand Theater. Tickets are also available through Foxwoods.com or by calling the Foxwoods’ Box Office at 800-200-2882 or Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000. LION FIGHT XIX airs live on AXS TV starting at a special time, 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Visit LIONFIGHT.com for news, information and event updates, and follow on Twitter @LIONFIGHT.

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Something Wicked This Way Comes

Criminal Justice in America Grants Immunity to ‘Unregulated’ Fights to the Death

When something bad happens, almost never is it an accident. Somewhere, somehow, some way, someone broke the rules. Rules of the road patrol the frontier between safe and sorry.

Whether roads are paved with good intentions – give or take – that’s not exactly why we go to the fights. Guaranteed something bad will happen, where rules can be broken with impunity. This was the proximate cause of what killed 24 year old ring rookie Dennis Munson, Jr. If you’ve got a thin skin, don’t watch “Death in the Ring”.

“No one is investigating Munson’s death. The state says it has no authority to investigate the death or the actions of those in charge that night because it was an unregulated event.” (“Milwaukee kickboxer Dennis Munson Jr.’s death follows cascade of errors by fight officials” by John Diedrich in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on November 15, 2014)

Unlike roads that are paved with good intentions, Milwaukee District Attorney John T. Chilsom’s misunderstanding of his job description also patrols a frontier: between regulation of commerce and auditioning for poster boy in the Criminal Justice Hall of Shame. (See “District Attorney Analysis of Why Criminal Charges Not Filed in Dennis Munson Jr. Death” in Combat Sports Law on November 19, 2014.) This is turning out to be one sorry stretch for District Attorneys going off the radar, like Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370.

A career French diplomat told me a long time ago what makes America unique is its national identification with the rule of law. In our consent to be governed under the U.S. Constitution, we’ve organized around the moral imperative of justice for all. It is a guiding principle. Justice cannot and should not be beholden to legislative discretion in the regulation of commerce, including sports like kickboxing in Wisconsin or anywhere else.Milwaukee D.A. John T. Chilsolm

District Attorneys do not need regulatory permission slips from their state legislatures to go after willful negligence, reckless indifference or wrongful death │ whenever or wherever. Just because it’s not regulated doesn’t mean someone couldn’t run ropes around a raised square of canvas and trick up some gladiators. (See “New York’s real-life fight club” by Dina Abdel-Haq in Salon on July 6, 2013.) Our consent to be governed by the rule of law in America makes bogus the copping of a prosecutorial plea to “Civilization and Its Discontents”. Fights to the death should be subject to the rule of law │ with or without regulatory mandates. Justice denied is contempt for our consent to be governed by moral imperatives.

Rage without the Cage

Fashion’s passion for Muay Thai’s sexy tricksWithin the legal lexicon, rules that are definitional hoard meaning in specificity. They abhor ambiguity. There is no such thing, thus, as almost or a little bit pregnant. Either she is or she’s not. Neither does Muay Thai surrender its integrity to fashion’s passion for all those sexy tricks. Stand Up in the cage is not the same as Muay Thai, just because some talking head with a microphone says so.

Phanuwat ‘Coke’ Chunhawat vs. Chris MauceriThe first time I personally witnessed “MMA Creep” was at a Fairtex United States Muay Thai Federation show in the Santa Clara Convention Center on June 13, 2009. At the rules meeting, CSAC’s Danny “Bam Bam” Stell actually admonished officials to be vigilant for rule infractions coming off a World Combat Sports show two weeks earlier, where Muay Thai had alternated with MMA at the Kezar Pavillion in San Francisco. Phanuwat ‘Coke’ Chunhawat hadn’t yet mellowed out and caught a DQ at that World Combat Sports show, if you can believe it, for trying too hard.

Sure enough Erik Luna (American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose) would do a ground & pound on Clifton Gross (Sitan Arizona). Instead of laying a DQ on Erik, CSAC’s ref went through the formality of a count on the way to awarding Luna a KO. Even though the ref knew better – or should’ve from the rules meeting – he still made the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) complicit in a flagrant rules violation. (“California Dreaming Conjures Visions of a Muay Thai Paradise” in the Winter of 2009 edition of Muay Thaimes®, Vol. III, No. 4.)

“Swarm and Storm”

Pedro Gonzalez comes into Lion Fight XIX ranked #1 on New England’s Pro MMA circuitIt is thus that Pedro Gonzalez (Redline Fight Sports in Boston, Massachusetts) comes into Lion Fight XIX ranked #1 in his weight bracket with a 10-5-0 record on New England’s Pro MMA circuit. Coveting a UFC spinoff blockbuster, “MMA Creep” now seems to be giving this self-defined Muay Thai promotion a case of mission creep. “Part of the genius of Lion Fight’s matchmaking”, according to the promotion’s own branding campaign, “is scheduling MMA converts against Muay Thai traditionalists.”

If this proposition seems to be a little off message, it’s probably because the “converts” they’re really after are MMA’s fans. Neither Pedro nor his team mate Matt Doherty – a rookie on New England’s Pro MMA circuit – have any discernible intention of converting their Stand Up in the cage to Muay Thai. “I have short term goals and long term goals”, Doherty declares in an Extreme MMA News interview heading into his Muay Thai gig at Foxwoods. “I have just signed a 6 Fight deal with CES up at Twin Rivers Casino and joined the CES family…So my goal at the moment is to train my ass off, help my team become monsters and have myself take the CES division to a whole new level…My all-time goal is to make a big promotion like the UFC.”

Matt Doherty has no discernible intention of converting from Stand Up to Muay ThaiWhat Matt Doherty and Pedro Gonzalez are doing for the Lion Fight brand at Foxwoods, thus, pales next to how they’ve been doing it. Pairing “Muay Thai traditionalists” with “swarm and storm” sets a transparent stage for rage without the cage. “I love to just stand and strike with somebody that will do that with me,” Matt tells his fans. “You don’t always get to do that in MMA.” Pedro is equally candid. “I don’t really throw anything traditional”. Why should he, if Foxwoods refs don’t seem to mind grope-a-dope?

Rungrat Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok │ Kingdom of Thailand) vs.
Pedro Gonzalez (Redline Fight Sports │ North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts)
Full Rules Muay Thai │ 143 lbs. │ 5×3.

It takes only one round for Rungrat Sasiprapa to figure out he’s been conscripted into a brawl with indeterminate rules. If the ref is going to let Pedro’s storm surge converge, two can tango to “Dirty Dancing”. Rungrat goes Lethwei with a head butt. “Swarm and storm” spills into a Bangkok blood bucket.

Maybe Rungrat figures this is what “traditionalist” means in American scripting. Referee Tom Sconzo doesn’t think so and penalizes him a point. It’s the point where Rungrat realizes he better not leave this one to the judges. Mister #1 ranked on New England’s Pro MMA circuit seems also to realize, at this point, his rising tide escorts a monster monsoon.

Let’s pause here to mend some cracks in this lamest of media’s due diligence fences. “Diversification, a popular practice in the business world, is now spreading like wildfire among pro fighters eager to test themselves in a variety of different martial arts competitions.” Beware of forcing facts to fit a theory. Diversification is actually an investment strategy. In managing a successful business, the smart money puts its focus on core competencies, if you really want to go there.

Lion Fight 19

With 15 professional cage fights, Pedro Gonzalez was way overmatched against 1-0-0 Nick Chasteen (Best Muay Thai in Tempe, Arizona) at Lion Fight’s Foxwoods premier on May the 23rd. Lion Fight XVII then comp’d the Boston bludgeoner even more of a mismatch for the pro debut of Tim Amorin (Rami’s Legendary Gym in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) on August the 1st. Just so much of a diversification case can be made for this kind of match making, before it defaults to bullying. Taking it to a 19 year old with 5x more OJT in a 50-24-1 professional record, Pedro is about to find out how the bait feels in bottom fishing.

An offended national pride demands to be avenged.  Photo by Dan Eric for Muay Thaimes®.

An offended national pride demands to be avenged. Photo by Dan Eric for Muay Thaimes®.

Thais are a proud people, and Muay Thai is their national sport. An offended national pride demands to be avenged. This could explain why Rungrat abstains from an easy win, which would also risk sending “MMA Creep” the wrong message. Even Pedro knows that he’s blood in the water after the head butt. Never mind the proxy pundits, who can’t possibly hear what’s not broadcast on the AXS-tv sound track or see with their own eyes the severity of a cut.

Rungrat proceeds instead to school not just Pedro, but all of the heretics outnumbering us, in the efficacy of a martial art that’s been twelve hundred years in the making. “Scholars believe that all South East Asian Indochinese kickboxing styles originate from what is thought to be the migrated Indian kingdom of Funan just prior to the creation of the Khmer Empire; consequentially Kun Khmer, Muay Thai, Lethwei and Tomoi all share similar stances and techniques.” Mastering the space between them, Rungrat validates how artful clinching prevails over mindless muscularity. “The clinch is used to wear down the opponent. In the clinch, opponents battle for dominant position for short range strikes by way of elbows and knees.”

Where Stand Up in the cage dilutes style and technique out of having to hedge against a take-down, Rungrat mixes finesse with ferocity in the Muay Thai clinch. Torpedoes impersonating knees detonate their war heads on Pedro’s torso. The Thai fires them in fusillades. They do grievous bodily harm. Rungrat renders the #1 ranked mixed martial artist on New England’s pro circuit incapable of remaining erect.

A jack of all trades is master of noneNot only isn’t Muay Thai the same as Stand Up in the cage, “a jack of all trades is master of none”. Referee Tom Sconzo calls a cease fire at 2:42 of Round 4 in this triumph of core competencies over diversification’s risk │ reward tradeoff. Then it’s the fat lady’s turn to sing.

Winner: Rungrat Sasiprapa by TKO

Let No Good Deed Go Unpunished

Notwithstanding robust demand for mixing martial arts, popular sentiment is a notoriously perishable commodity. On the metric of product life cycles, Muay Thai’s spans more than a millennium. Who doesn’t buy survival of the fittest in such staying power, there’s a message in this media: new isn’t necessarily improved.

Showcasing ‘The Soul in the Savagery’ makes a stronger case for appealing to convertsRe-packaging doesn’t so much win converts as maintain brand loyalty within a consumer cohort. So packaging Stand Up in the cage with a Muay Thai wrapper probably prolongs the UFC’s shelf life more than win converts to Lion Fight’s brand, unless there’s a unique selling proposition. Showcasing ‘The Soul in the Savagery’ makes a stronger case for appealing to converts, while also maintaining brand loyalty among Lion Fight’s core consumer cohort.

Having to push tickets through the narrow distribution channel of local gym membership – in order to monetize match making through pay to play – takes some of the edge off Lion Fight’s mission creep. Only Scott Kent would go large, by the same token, for the likes of Chajmaa Bellekhal, Caley Reece and Fabio Pinca to feature in a Foxwoods show.

Sean Kearney (Iron City Muay Thai in Vancouver, British Columbia │ Canada)
vs. Jo Nattawut (Bangkok Boxing in Atlanta, Georga)
Full Rules Muay Thai │ 161 lbs. │ 5×3.

In the spirit of letting no good deed go unpunished, Fabio Pinca pulls out of his Lion Fight Super Lightweight title defense a day before the show, because he doesn’t feel 100%. Having just passed his medical, though, Fab Fabio presents no clinical symptoms that the doc can find.

Jo Nattawut wins every round on all of the score cardsRisk without reward leaves Lion Fight CEO Scott Kent’s bank account worse for the wear from Team Pinca’s airfare, liability insurance premiums, binders, licensing fees, labs and medical exam. Never mind blowing off the fans, who’ve not only bought show tickets but also toughed out the New England Turnpike. If you detect some editorial je ne sais quoi from moi [high school French for WTF?] I’ve seen Kevin Ross report to work at Lion Fight IX with borderline pneumonia.

Jo Nattawut substitutes for Fab Fabio on less than a day’s notice. Picture him packing a bag and jumping in the cab right after hanging up the phone with Scott, then snatching Khunpon Dechkampu on the way to Atlanta’s Hartsfield–Jackson International Airport. Winning every round on all of the scorecards, either Jo’s mug belongs on a Wheaties box or Fab Fabio probably didn’t need 100% in the first place to successfully defend his Lion Fight title against Sean Kearney.

Winner: Jo Nattawut by Unanimous Decision

Chajmaa Bellekhal (Hemmers Gym in Breda │ The Netherlands) vs.
Jeri Sitzes (Budo-Kai Fight Game Gym in Springfield, Missouri)
Full Rules Muay Thai │ 124 lbs. │ 5×3.

“When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions!” [Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 5] Caley Reece (Riddlers Gym in Perth, Australia) parachutes out of the emergency exit ahead of Fab Fabio, making for twin title defense cancellations on short notice. With only ten days to get ready for a main event, former NABF champ and WCL veteran Jeri Sitzes postpones a scheduled wedding date – which probably precipitates an even tougher fight – necessitating a focus on her own core competencies.

It is necessary for Jeri Sitzes to focus on core competenciesLet’s pause here again for another due diligence digression. Muay Thai is itself a mix of martial arts. Descending from unarmed combat on the battlefield – through Muay Chaiya, Muay Korat, Muay Tasao, Muay Jerng and eventually Muay Boran – it combines knee, leg and elbow strikes with clinch grappling and conventional Marquis of Queensberry boxing. From the molecules of its DNA, thus, there is no one size fits all in either the practice or judging of Muay Thai.

Western judges are apprenticed to score on a hierarchy of strikes for pretty much the same reason drill sergeants go through the numbers with boot camp newbies to instill military literacy. For all of Muay Thai’s complexity, though, there is no victory in battle without someone getting beaten. Kru Tony Moore, who founded the British Thai Boxing Council, articulates it like this: “Points are awarded for the power, hitting a target area and technical ability of the technique.”

Recognizing that such determinations leave a lot of room for subjective “judgment”, there is nothing subjective about Chajmaa Bellekhal’s broken nose and eye socket. Two of the judges seem to miss this completely, one of whom gives the Dutch star all five rounds.

There is nothing subjective about Chajmaa Bellekhal's broken nose and eye socketBecause flawed judgment exacts a toll on all human enterprise, Quality Control helps to fix what needs fixing. So management earns its keep by evaluating job performance against applicable professional standards. Maybe a judge needs more schooling. Just like the athletic performances they’ve been hired to judge, it’s also possible that some just can’t measure up. If the stewards of our sport don’t own up to accountability, the fans will do it for │ to them. Except for having to wear a winter coat, Scott Kent probably feels like he never left NSAC’s jurisdiction. Although Chajmaa Bellekhal gets the decision, Jeri Sitzes wins their fight.

Winner: Chajmaa Bellekhal by Split Decision

The last time an American scored rock star in a weight bracket that really matters on Thailand’s hit parade was never. Nowhere near front runner in America’s race to the top would I have expected to see an alumnus of the NYC circuit, owing to full rules Muay Thai having been remedial at the time Ognjen Topic matriculated in this most parochial of schools. A school yearbook – if we can imagine such an ancestor to the New Jersey Martial Arts Hall of Fame – would’ve singled out the promising local prospect as best “Stylist” in his class.

Rungravee comps unworthy challengers the first two rounds to flail till they failAfter one of those incomprehensible verdicts at the Friday Night Fights in New York City, NJMT’s Kru Ray Cruz commiserated with me. “Exactly what standards should I teach to my students, Bob?” That’s when I got on the WKA’s case to clean up its act in my home town. [LOL] Ray’s lament would turn out to be déjà vû in the wake of an unapologetically home town bias in NSAC’s balloting at Lion Fight 2 in Primm, Nevada. (“Blood Oath Stirs an American Awakening” in the Summer of 2011 edition of Muay Thaimes®, Vol. V, No. 2.) That’s when I went on the warpath for common core standards in this sport’s stewardship.

The standards Kru Ray Cruz prizes so highly – along with Ognjen Topic’s testing positive for “traditionalist” in the Thai style – flow like twin tributaries into a metaphoric river delta of values, beliefs, traditions and practices that cradle Thailand’s living civilization. NJMT’s two spirit guides – Ray Cruz and Joe Bumanlag – precede their star student to Thailand in the late 90’s to apprentice at the Saktaywan Muay Thai Camp under Lumpini and Rajadamnern stadiums’ top ten ranked Thanosak Sor. Plantalae and Ajarn Pra Sit Thang Dong. In such an analogue for a purposeful dynamic, the promising local prospect’s career development traces a pilgrimage as perpetual as spiritual growth always having to chase a moving target.

Who doesn’t jump all over a tax holidayCompare New England cage convert Matt Doherty’s candid confessional with this “Pilgrim’s Progress” towards his own date with destiny. “I recently spent seven months in Thailand training. I had five fights, winning two of them, but the experience raised my game a lot…You have to put a lot of effort into something to get a lot out of it. Muay Thai showed me that…I decided that Muay Thai was something that I was going to go after full time. So I’m focused on Muay Thai now as my career.”

Rungravee Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok │ Kingdom of Thailand)
vs. Ognjen Topic (North Jersey Muay Thai in Lodi, New Jersey)
Full Rules Muay Thai │ 132 lbs. │ 5×3.

Consistent with the Matt Lucas characterization of an “angry troll”, Rungravee Sasiprapa comps unworthy challengers the first two rounds to flail till they fail. Who doesn’t jump all over a tax holiday? Ognjen Topic also jumps all over Rungravee for a commanding lead on the score cards │ with the possible exception of one judge, who might be flipping coins or wandering in the wilderness. What Sherpa steward scales the slippery slope of notoriously perishable popular sentiment with a chain fashioned indifferently out of weak links?

When the time comes for Rungravee to recover lost ground in his cat and mouse game, a theme that’s been consistent throughout this entire show takes precedence: “Thou art not alone in proving foresight may be vain. The best laid schemes of mice and men do often go awry and leave us nought but grief and pain for promised joy.” [Robert Burns, 1786] Mice don’t have a great track record with cats in a stick and move groove.

Mice don’t have a great track record with cats in a stick and move grooveRungravee’s fearsome reputation – in the “angry troll” impersonation – keys off being able to lure quarry into his strength. The lure’s key, thus, is catching them off guard. Never underestimate the mind game, where technical prowess mints coin of the realm.

Exposure to Bosnia’s Serbian-Croatian killing fields likely informs Ognjen Topic how “protect yourself at all times” plays into surviving lethal cross fire │ or not. It just as likely kindles his resolve to learn from experience. “When I first fought a Thai, Neungsiam,” Ognjen remembers that “I was afraid of losing the fight based on experience and that’s exactly what happened. I gave him way too much respect in that fight. I couldn’t really pull the trigger and do my thing. After that fight I told myself I would never do that again.” Neungsiam’s gain proves to be Rungravee’s pain.

Neungsiam’s gain proves to be Rungravee’s painAbout midway through Round 4, Rungravee seems to concede the inevitability of defeat. Dangling both arms by his sides and turning his back, he begins walking towards his corner. How much should something like this influence judgment on a scale of would you change any plans noticing a funnel cloud outside your window? What happens next tells the story.

For the first time, Rungravee has managed to come up with a move to throw Ognjen Topic off his game. He’s wide open for a sucker punch. Maybe a couple of seconds tick off the clock. Rungravee does another 180°. Call it a momentary lapse. He flashes a grin and sticks out his tongue. Then he continues to take his lumps. Case closed.

Winner: Ognjen Topic by Unanimous Decision

“All’s well that ends well”. The impersonator of an “angry troll” shows that he’s human after all. The Jersey Jedi is at one with the Force. America has a new rock star. It’s time for Scott Kent and Ognjen Topic to begin thinking about Jompitchit Chuwattana and Genji Umeno.

All’s well that ends wellLion Fight XIX
Mashantucket Pequot Foxwoods® Resorts ♦ Casino
Ledyard, Connecticut
Friday, November 21, 2014

PROFESSIONAL MUAY THAI: FULL RULES:

Ognjen Topic (North Jersey Muay Thai in Lodi, New Jersey) def. Rungravee Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok, Kingdom of Thailand) by Unanimous Decision: 50-45, 49-46, and 48-47 │ 132 lbs. │ 5×3.

Chajmaa Bellekhal (Hemmers Gym in Breda, The Netherlands) def. Jeri Sitzes (Budo-Kai Fight Game Gym in Springfield, Missouri) by Split Decision: 49-46, 47-48, and 50-46 │ 124 lbs. │ 5×3.

Rungrat Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok, Kingdom of Thailand) def. Pedro Gonzalez (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by TKO at 2:42 of Round 4 │ 143 lbs. │ 5×3.

Chris Mauceri (Stockade Martial Arts in Kingston, New York) def. Phanuwat ‘Coke’ Chunhawat (Dek Wat Muay Thai in Oakland, California) by Unanimous Decision: 49-46, 49-46, and 50-45 │ 140 lbs. │ 5×3.

Muay Thai is itself a mix of martial arts

Jo Nattawut (Bangkok Boxing in Atlanta, Georga) def. Sean Kearney (Iron City Muay Thai in Vancouver/British Columbia, Canada) by Unanimous Decision: All three judges scored it 50-45 │ 161 lbs. │ 5×3.

Julio Pena (Hard Knocks Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) def. Matt Doherty (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: 49-46, 48-47, and 48-47 │ 135 lbs. │ 5×3.

AMATEUR MUAY THAI: MODIFIED RULES:

Benjamin Anton (Rami Elite in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) def. Niko Qirjazo (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 29-28, and 30-27 │ 143 lbs. │ 3×2.

Emily Back (AMA Fight Club in Whippany, New Jersey) def. Elizabeth Silveria (Hard Knocks Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Majority Decision: 29-28, 29-28, and 28-28 │ 118 lbs. │ 3×2.

Brian Bogue (Burke’s Martial Arts in Cranston, Rhode Island) def. Jeovanny Tovar (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: All three judges scored it 29-28 │ 165 lbs. │ 3×2.

Julian Nguyen (Team Link Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) def. Nick Valentino (Sitmangpong Thai Boxing in Shutesbury, Massachusetts) by TKO at 0:47 of Round 1 │ 147 lbs. │ 3×2.

End Story MarkCLICK HERE for Dan Eric’s Photo Gallery. Bennie E. Palmore II’s entire Lion Fight Photo Gallery is also a CLICK AWAY.

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Challenger 12 ‘Fully Loaded’ MuayThai

Four Time Professional World Champion and Canada’s Legendary Muay Thai Pioneer Ajarn Mike Miles presents:

Challenger 12
International MuayThai Gala
‘Fully Loaded’
Saturday January 24, 2015 │ 7:00 PM

Challenger 12 Poster

HAKEEM DAWODU (Canada)
vs.
CHARLIE PETERS (England)

Hakeem Dawodu has had a difficult time finding Muay Thai bouts. His last MuayThai fight was in Calgary on April the 5th, 2014 with a Unanimous Decision over Thailand’s Sam Samut Dawodu to win a WMC Intercontinental Title. Dawodu has been working on getting a chance to battle in the world’s top promotions, including GLORY and K-1. That news will be coming forth!

On January the 24th, former WMC World Light Middleweight Muay Thai Champion Charlie Peters from England will take the challenge and step up to battle the Calgary athlete. Peters is a young fighter with plenty of experience. He formerly held the WMC World Title, before deciding to move down in weight and going after the Welterweight Championship Belt.

Both of these athletes have their eyes on the results of winning this bout will hold for the winner. Both athletes possess very exciting styles, are highly skilled and in their primes. Speed, power, determination, guts and skill will determine the outcome of this bout. Do not miss it.

MUAYTHAI UNDER CARD
North American Title Fight:
MAX CARRUTHERS vs. ZACHARY LANE (USA)

PLUS:
SCOTT MACKENZIE vs. JEREMY MILBOURN (USA)
BLAKE WEIGEL vs. ANDREW RIVERA (USA)
NOLAN SHERGOLD vs. JASON COLE (USA)

FEMALE FIGHT:
LINDSAY HOLMES vs. CASSIE WARBECK

ALSO:
DYLAN BASTIAN vs. JAMES NELSON
FAWZEL MUBIN vs. PIERRE BAZIN
DYLAN O’TOOLE vs. JAMES RICKS

End Story MarkDEERFOOT INN & CASINO
1000, 11500 – 35 St SE
Calgary, Canada
TICKETS: 403.244.8424

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Yangame’s Fight Night 2 │ ColliƵion

TatNeft World Cup │ Elimination Tournament │ TNA Rules
The Slavic House
Prague, Czech Republic
January 17, 2015

Yangame Fight Night 2 Poster

The TATNEFT Cup World Championship is administered under an especially composed, patented set of rules known as TNA Rules. The rules are strict and only allow for the use of striking techniques derived from martial arts such as Muay Thai, Kyokushin and Kickboxing. The championship features 48 fighters competing in three weight classes: Under 70 kg, Under 80 kg, and 80+ kg. The tournament is split into four stages of the last 16, two stages of the quarterfinals, the semifinals, and the finals. A fighter can either win a bout by knock-out or knock-down, or have it decided by judges following four rounds.

2015-01-17_COLLIZION CZECH REPUBLIC Praga_32015-01-17_COLLIZION CZECH REPUBLIC Praga_4 2015-01-17_COLLIZION CZECH REPUBLIC Praga_5End Story MarkOne fighter from each weight bracket will advance to the TATNEFT Arena in Kazan, Tartarstan to compete for TatNeft World Cup on May the 28th.

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Combat at the Capitale Features Glory World Series Star Wayne Barrett to Kick Off 2015 on February the 6th

130 Bowery in New York City at 8:00pm

Combat at the Capitale on 2-6-15TICKETS AVAILABLE AT:
Ray Longo’s Martial Arts Academy │ (516)294-6313
Lou Neglia’s Martial Arts Karate, Inc. │ (718)372-9089

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AMTL WMC Kings Birthday Show – Full Results

American Muay Thai League
Kings Birthday Show
Nova Community College
8333 Little River Turnpike
Annandale, Virginia
December 5th, 2014

Rama IX, Bhumibol Adulyadej, King of Thailand

His Royal Majesty Rama IX, Bhumibol Adulyadej, King of Thailand

His Royal Majesty Bhumibol Adulyadej (In Thai: ภูมิพลอดุลยเดช;) – who was born at the Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts in the United States on December 5 1927 – is the King of Thailand. His US birth certificate reads simply “Baby Songkla”, as the parents had to consult his uncle, King Rama VII (Prajadhipok), who was then head of the House of Chakri, for an auspicious name. The king chose Bhumibol Adulyadej, meaning “Strength of the Land, Incomparable Power” (from Sanskrit भूमिबल अतुल्यतेज, bhūmibala atulyatēja). Because his father was enrolled in the Public Health program at Harvard University, hence the unusual place of birth for a Thai monarch. He is the only monarch to have been born in the U.S. Also known as Rama IX, he is the ninth monarch of the Chakri Dynasty. Having reigned since June 9, 1946, he is the world’s longest-serving current head of state and the longest-reigning monarch in Thai history.

Emblem of Thailand (Royal Warrant)

FULL RESULTS
Sanctioned by the World Muay Thai Council (WMC)
in Bangkok, Thailand

WMC U.S. NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP BOUTS:

Justin Greskewicz (Stay Fly Muay Thai in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) def.
Jeremy Carper (Coalition MMA in Martinsburgh, West Virginia)
by KO at 1:08 of Round 3.
WMC Welterweight Title Match │ 5×3

Coke Chunhawat (Dek Wat Muay Thai in Oakland, California) def.
Carlos Lopez (White Lotus Muay Thai/Disciple MMA in Sterling, Virginia)
by Unanimous Decision: 50-49, 50-48 and 49-48.
WMC Super Lightweight Title Match │ 5×3

Ahmet Kairetli (Kaizen MMA in Falls Church, Virginia) def.
Caleb Archer (Renzo Gracie in New York City)
by Unanimous Decision: 50-44, 50-45 and 49-47.
WMC Lightweight Title Match │ 5×3

< King’s Birthday >

PROFESSIONAL MUAY THAI: FULL RULES:

Greg Rowe (Five Points Fitness in New York City) def.
Kelly Huston (White Lotus Muay Thai/Disciple MMA in Sterling, Virginia)
by TKO after 3 Rounds (Concession).
Super Welterweight (154 lbs.) │ 5×3

Wat Phra Kaew

Wat Phra Kaew

AMATEUR MUAY THAI: MODIFIED RULES:

Asa Hart Ten (Legend Muay Thai in West Palm Beach, Florida) def.
Neil Mustafa (Rami’s Elite in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)
by Majority Decision: 50-45, 49-49 and 49-48.
A-Class Amateurs │ Super Lightweight (140 lbs.) │ 5×2

Rudy Felix (Sitan Gym in New York City) def.
Jared Tipton (Level Up Boxing in Bowie, Maryland)
by Split Decision: 50-49, 48-50 and 49-48.
A-Class Amateurs │ Lightweight (135 lbs.) │ 5×2

Evan Reed (White Lotus Muay Thai/Disciple MMA in Sterling, Virginia)
def. Jonathan George (Seapeanong Muay Thai in Lorton, Virginia)
by KO at 1:38 of Round 2.
A-Class Amateurs │ Super Lightweight (140 lbs.) │ 5×2

Brian Hansen (Five Points Academy in New York City) def.
Allen Hargrove (Champion Boxing in Rockville, Maryland)
by Unanimous Decision: 50-45, 50-45 and 50-46.
A-Class Amateurs │ Light Heavyweight (175 lbs.) │ 5×2

Joey Hernandez (Sitan Gym in New York City) def.
Nimron Bibbin (Maryland Combat Sports Academy in Jefferson, Maryland)
by Unanimous Decision: 50-47, 50-45 and 50-47.
A-Class Amateurs │ Welterweight (147 lbs.) │ 5×2

Rolando Valdez (UFC Gym in Bethesda, Maryland) def.
James Green (Team Coban in New York City)
by Unanimous Decision: 50-46, 50-45 and 50-46.
A-Class Amateurs │ Super Welterweight (154 lbs.) │ 5×2

End Story MarkDiana Metzger (White Lotus Muay Thai/Disciple MMA in Sterling, Virginia)
def. Mel Odria (Seapeanong Muay Thai in Lorton, Virginia)
by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-29 and 30-27.
B-Class Amateurs │ Mini Flyweight (105 lbs.) │ 3×2│ Vincent Dudley

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Rising Sun Shines on Japanese Muay Thai in WBC World Title Fights

Historic victories for Japanese warriors in
WBC Muay Thai World Title Bouts at
Tokyo’s Korakuen Stadium on November 15, 2014.

Genji Umeno and Tetsuya Yamato made Muay Thai history, when the two Japanese fighters both won WBC world titles in Tokyo on November the 15th. The twin victories showed that Japan has now taken its participation in full rules Muay Thai to the highest level of professional competition. Report by Miguel Rivera. CLICK HERE to see this story in small screen friendly slider format.

Belt PhotoWBC Super Featherweight World Championship
Jompitchit Choowattana (Choowattana Gym in Bangkok) vs. Genji Umeno (PHOENIX Gym in Tokyo)

Genji Umeno launched out of his corner off first bell and gave Jompitchit Chuwattana the business. He connected stiff jabs at will, along with solid leg and body kicks. Jompichit remained composed and was able to land a few shots of his own. Umeno continued taking it to Chuwattana. He delivered solid punch combinations, transitioned to lightning fast kicks, and punished Jompichit with a wicked elbow in the clinch.

Umeno gave Chuwattana the businessIn round two, Genji continued his assault on the title, firing boxing combinations and leg kicks. While in the clinch, Umeno used his height advantage to keep Chuwattana at a distance. It nullified Jompichit’s elbow attacks, while still giving Genji enough space to land his knees.

Chuwattana came out with a sense of urgency in the middle round and took the fight to Genji. Despite having to fight off the ropes a few times, Umeno continued to outscore Jompichit on both the inside and outside.

The 4th and 5th rounds were war in all of its savageryThe 4th and 5th rounds were war in all of its savagery. Sensing he was behind, Chuwattana resolved to leave everything in the ring. Even though Genji had to know that he’d piled up a lead on the score cards, neither was there any coasting for him. He fought like he was behind and went hell bent for the win. It was a memorable exhibition of “Soul in the Savagery” from both title contenders. Because the title had been vacant, Genji Umeno became the new WBC Super Featherweight World Champion.

WINNER: Genji Umeno by Unanimous Decision: 50-45, 50-47 49-47.

Yamato might’ve been mindful of his devastating defeat to SænchaiWBC Super Lightweight World Championship
Saketdao Petchpayatai (Kiatpet Gym in Bangkok) vs Tetsuya Yamato (Yamato Gym in Nagoya)

Even Bangkok’s best, like Lumpini champ Saketdao Petchpayatai, seem to start slow. It is thought that they’re schooled to pace the stadium’s gambling action. So it was in Saketdao’s fight against Kevin Ross, where he didn’t get it going until about the middle of round two at the M-1 Grand Show in Los Angeles on October 21, 2011.

In front of a sold-out capacity crowd at Korakuen Stadium, it seemed like Saketdao never really got it going. Like Ross before him, Tetsuya Yamato came out smoking. Maybe mindful of his devastating defeat to Sænchai Sor Kingstar in Los Angeles on March 14, 2010, Tetsuya fired off single shots and then moved out – even when he connected – doing what’s known as “stick and move”. (See “Vengeance of Angels in the Valley of the Vanities” in the Summer of 2010 edition of Muay Thaimes®, Vol. IV, No. 2 on pp. 6-10.)

Tetsuya Yamato came out smokingOff second bell, Saketdao became more active. He blasted kicks and punches. Yamato stayed with his “stick and move” tactics. Saketdao went to his strikes in order to close the distance, where he could work his strength in the clinch. Credit Tetsuya for going Samurai with his elbows in close quarters. Saketdao was undeterred, though, and kept pushing forward. He fired teeps to throw Tetsuya off balance, transitioning relentlessly back to the clinch. Every time Saketdao moved in, though, he was rocked by Yamato’s elbows. At round’s end, the judges had Saketdao ahead on the score cards: 20-19, 19-20 and 20-19. Maybe they were thinking it was the champ’s to lose.

Credit Tetsuya for going Samurai with his elbows in close quartersWhile Saketdao went into round three with push kicks and body kicks, Tetsuya rammed the pedal to the metal. He surged forward, no longer “sticking and moving”. Backing Saketdao against the ropes, the Japanese contender exploded a barrage of elbows on the champ’s command and control HQ. The ref called a pause to check on the ensuing blood bath cascading down Saketdao’s face. Summoning a doc to the neutral corner, the medical examination revealed that Saketdao’s nose had been broken. For this reason, the fight was stopped.

WINNER: Tetsuya Yamato by TKO (Ref Stoppage for Injury) at 1:53 of Round 3.

Tetsuya Yamato vs. Kevin Ross at Lion Fight XI in Las Vegas on September 20, 2013.  Photo by Bennie E. Palmore II for Muay Thaimes®.

Tetsuya Yamato vs. Kevin Ross at Lion Fight XI in Las Vegas on September 20, 2013. Photo by Bennie E. Palmore II for Muay Thaimes®.

Yamato had to take the measure of Coke Chunhawat.  Photo by Josephine Runneboom.

Yamato had to take the measure of Coke Chunhawat. Photo by Josephine Runneboom.

Tetsuya Yamato has now earned his badge as “Sheriff of the Comeback Trail”. Recovering from a humiliating loss three years ago to Sænchai Sor Kingstar, Japan’s Yamato first had to take the measure of Coke Chunhawat in Los Angeles on August 14, 2011 (See “A Heart Beat away from the Belly of the Beast” in the Spring of 2012 edition of Muay Thaimes®, Vol. VI, No. 1 on pp. 85-86) and Kevin Ross at Lion Fight XI in Las Vegas on September 20, 2013, before ascending to the WBC’s Super Lightweight throne.

New Japan Kickboxing Federation
Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan
November 15, 2014

WBC Muaythai World Super Lightweight Championship:
Tetsuya Yamato (Japan) def. Saketdao Petchpayatai (Kingdom of Thailand) by TKO (Ref Stoppage for Injury) at 1:53 of Round 3 │ 140 lbs. │ 5×3.

WBC Muaythai World Super Featherweight Championship:
Genji Umeno (Japan) def. Jompitchit Choowattana (Kingdom of Thailand) by Unanimous Decision: 50-45, 50-47, and 49-47 │ 130 lbs. │ 5×3.

WBC Muaythai Japanese National Lightweight Championship:
Keijiro Miyakoshi (Champion) def. Yukimitsu Takahashi (Challenger) by Unanimous Decision: 48-47, 49-48, and 49-48 │ 135 lbs. │ 5×3.

Welterweight Super Fight:
KENTA
def. Eiki by Majority Decision: 30-28, 29-29, and 30-28 │ 147 lbs. │ 3×3.

Welterweight Super Fight:
TEYON
def. Yuya Yamato by KO at 2:26 of Round 2 │ 147 lbs. │ 3×3.

NJKF Super Welterweight Championship:
Tatsurou YETI
def. KEN by Majority Decision: 48-47, 48-48, and 49-47 │ 154 lbs. │ 5×3.

NJKF Featherweight Championship:
MOMOTARO
def. DAIKI by Unanimous Decision: All three judges voted 50-47 │ 126 lbs. │ 5×3.

NJKF Bantamweight Bout:
Hiroki Maeda
def. Kazuji Wakano by KO at 1:16 of Round 2 │ 118 lbs. │ 3×3.

NJKF Super Lightweight Bout:
Yusuke Shimada
def. Jo Utsunomiya by KO at 2:30 of Round 3 │ 140 lbs. │ 3×3.

The Winning TeamEnd Story MarkThe dual victories in Tokyo were a triumph too for Japanese promoter Kyoji Saito, who seven years ago embarked on a campaign to train and develop Japanese Muay Thai fighters to the elite level so that they’d be able to successfully challenge for world titles. “The sun rises and the sun sets, then it returns to rise again.” [Ecclesiastes 1:5] Photography by Yuichiro Suzuki on the scene and from the archives: Bennie E. Palmore IIJoséphine Runneboom │ Jeffery Dojillo.

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Spanish Champ Carlos Coello’s Story

Sometimes, the most difficult fights happen outside of the ring. This is the story of Carlos Coello by the Spanish filmmaker José Prada:

Decisions (a portrait of Carlos Coello) from Jose Prada on Vimeo.

Follow José on Facebook.

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Full Results from Lion Fight XIX on November 21, 2014

Topic vs. RungraveeLion Fight XIX

Mashantucket Pequot Foxwoods® Resorts ♦ Casino
Ledyard, Connecticut
Friday, November 21, 2014

PROFESSIONAL MUAY THAI: FULL RULES:

Ognjen Topic (North Jersey Muay Thai in Lodi, New Jersey) def. Rungravee Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok, Kingdom of Thailand) by Unanimous Decision: 50-45, 49-46, and 48-47 │ 132 lbs. │ 5×3.

Bellekhal vs. SitzesChajmaa Bellekhal (Hemmers Gym in Breda, The Netherlands) def. Jeri Sitzes (Budo-Kai Fight Game Gym in Springfield, Missouri) by Split Decision: 49-46, 47-48, and 50-46 │ 124 lbs. │ 5×3.

Rungrat vs. GonzalezRungrat Sasiprapa (Sasiprapa Gym in Bangkok, Kingdom of Thailand) def. Pedro Gonzalez (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by TKO at 2:42 of Round 4 │ 143 lbs. │ 5×3.

Chris Mauceri (Stockade Martial Arts in Kingston, New York) def. Coke Chunhawat (Dek Wat Muay Thai in Oakland, California) by Unanimous Decision: 49-46, 49-46, and 50-45 │ 140 lbs. │ 5×3.

Jo Nattawut (Bangkok Boxing in Atlanta, Georga) def. Sean Kearney (Iron City Muay Thai in Vancouver/British Columbia, Canada) by Unanimous Decision: All three judges scored it 50-45 │ 161 lbs. │ 5×3.

Julio Pena (Hard Knocks Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) def. Matt Doherty (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: 49-46, 48-47, and 48-47 │ 135 lbs. │ 5×3.

AMATEUR MUAY THAI: MODIFIED RULES:

Benjamin Anton (Rami Elite in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) def. Niko Qirjazo (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 29-28, and 30-27 │ 143 lbs. │ 3×2.

Emily Back (AMA Fight Club in Whippany, New Jersey) def. Elizabeth Silveria (Hard Knocks Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Majority Decision: 29-28, 29-28, and 28-28 │ 118 lbs. │ 3×2.

Brian Bogue (Burke’s Martial Arts in Cranston, Rhode Island) def. Jeovanny Tovar (Redline Fight Sports/North Shore Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) by Unanimous Decision: All three judges scored it 29-28 │ 165 lbs. │ 3×2.

End Story MarkJulian Nguyen (Team Link Muay Thai in Boston, Massachusetts) def. Nick Valentino (Sitmangpong Thai Boxing in Shutesbury, Massachusetts) by TKO at 0:47 of Round 1 │ 147 lbs. │ 3×2.

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Integrity Needs No Indemnity from Collateral Damage in Combat at the Capitale on October 17, 2014

Andrew Ball vs. Christopher Gray for FeatureWhile covering a show in Las Vegas once, I overheard Pat Miletich explain to the tv audience “what the judges are looking at”. Pat knows more than I ever will what the judges should be looking at. I’ve covered shows, though, with judges who weren’t even looking. (See “Bridge Over Troubled Water Takes Credibility Toll on Fans and Fighters”) More common have been the judges who don’t know or don’t care what they should be looking at. (See “What Shall It Profit a Man, If He Gains the Whole World but Forfeits His Soul?” in Muay Thaimes®, Vol. IV, No. 3, Winter of 2010, pp.78-86.)

What got me thinking on this was how the WKA’s Officials-on-Demand has made NYC shows seem like A Tale of Two Cities, where: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way.” Take this to mean that we’ve got kind of an escort service here that makes a unique selling proposition out of customer satisfaction.

Malik Blake (left) vs. Chris Edmund

Malik Blake (left) vs. Chris Edmund

Officials-on-Demand come in a package deal for NYC show producers. The package includes a local favorite option for whatever it takes to satisfy some of these customers. We’ve got a sore loser with anger management issues, for example, who never met an outcome he couldn’t handicap with artful match making.

We’ve also got a local legend with adventure deficit. Don’t take my word for it. Betting only local favorites at the Friday Night Fights in NYC on September the 19th, you could’ve parlayed 8 out of 10 winners wearing a blindfold. The identical bias yanked Muay Thai out of the Sports Book at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. Trust me. I did my due diligence there. That Sports Book used to cover my out of pockets for the trip.

So it’s not exactly forcing facts to fit a theory for Artyom Sahakyan (Lion Martial Arts) to get the idea that there is a bias against his crew. Two out of the three big NYC shows exercise a local favorite option in their WKA Officials-on-Demand package deal. If there’s a moral or ethical difference between bias and pandering, integrity needs no indemnity from collateral damage.

James Connor at the Friday Night Fights in New York City on May 2, 2008

James Connor at the Friday Night Fights in New York City on May 2, 2008

Precisely because WKA’s reputation precedes it, Artyom Sahakyan should know that there is ample precedent for pigs in a poke on this circuit. Amble with me down memory lane to May the 2nd, 2008. (See “Church Street Boxing Gym’s Friday Night Fight Series in NYC” in Muay Thaimes®, Vol. II, No. 3, Fall of 2008 on p.42.) Sitan New York’s Kingsley Opaku had a ko nullified on the most bogus of pretexts: injury stoppage on account of the beneficiary James Connor’s head scratch, which literally took a band aid to patch. Rather than the ringside physician, it was WKA’s ref Chris Wagner who granted clemency. He also happened to be hosting Mr. Connor from Evolution Muay Thai in Wombourne, England. At some point, I just gave up trying to make this kind of stuff palatable for public consumption.

Don’t think for a New York minute that these shows are any more successful for the economic equivalent of DUI. On any tally of box office ballots, Lou Neglia’s Combat at the Capitale draws a Winners Circle around some truly staggering numbers. Lou’s patronage has produced 88 success stories, at latest count, that have made it all the way to the UFC, including most recently: Chris Weidman, Ryan Laflare, Al Iaquinta, Costas Philippou, Chris Wade and Truck Gordon.

So many success stories wouldn’t be imaginable, without Brian Crenshaw’s bringing Lou his Officials-on-Demand A-Game. While generalizations can be hazardous to my credibility, a place in Lou’s Winners Circle should be reserved also for the caliber of officials who worked Combat at the Capitale on October 17, 2014.

Every fight with Niko (on the right) is going to be a slug fest.

Every fight with Niko (on the right) is going to be a slug fest.

Niko Tsigaris (Lions Martial Arts in Brooklyn) vs.
Villi Bello (Ardón’s Sweet Science in Brooklyn)
Glory/ K-1 Professional Kickboxing Rules │ 153 lbs. │ 3×3.

You’ve probably figured out by now that Niko Tsigaris (from Azerbaijan) lost a close one to Villi Bello (from the Dominican Republic) in the main event. Except for an E-Z Pass with Chicago’s Billy Rose on June the 13th, Niko has been in some coin flips this past year at Lou’s house. Career development is like that. Wins or losses matter in relation to the caliber of competition.

Niko (on the right) is pretty much pegging his place in the pecking order.

Niko (on the right) is pretty much pegging his place in the pecking order.

Between a win over Nick Pace on September the 27th last year, a loss to John Bowman on April the 4th and the latest to Villi Bello, Niko is pretty much pegging his place in the pecking order. Close calls either way don’t get him pecking in Giorgio Petrosyan’s yard while also chasing Andy Ristie, Davit Kiria and Robin van Roosmalen. Ask Ky Hollenbeck about too close for comfort with this caliber of competition. (See “Starship Glory’s Orbit Towards Oblivion”)

Villi (on the right) seemed to have the power edge.

Villi (on the right) seemed to have the power edge.

With a weak clinch, Glory/K-1 rules allow what Niko does best and jettisons the rest. Because every fight with Niko is going to be a slug fest, pecking pales next to power. That’s where Villi seemed to have the edge.

Points are awarded for the power, hitting a target area and technical ability of the techniqueI ran this decision by the British Thai Boxing Council’s Tony Moore, who produced the first draft of what eventually became the American Association of Boxing Commissioners’ Unified Rules for Muay Thai. Here’s what he had to say. “Points are awarded for the power, hitting a target area and technical ability of the technique.” In other words, the judges got it right, which Greg Ardón can tell Artyom Sahakyan doesn’t happen all that often for his crew either.

Winner: Villi Bello by Split Decision: 29-28, 28-29, and 29-28.

Andrew Ball (Neglia Competition Team in Brooklyn) vs.
Christopher Gray (Team Top Notch in Chicago)
WKA Northeast ChampionshipGlory/ K-1 Amateur Kickboxing Rules │ 185 lbs. │ 4×2.

Winners Circle brings to mind thoroughbreds, thundering hooves, first to the finish. Some careers seem to get there without a single misstep. They need only a showcase right out of the gate. I can think of two hot local prospects on that kind of track: Mike Fischetti (Team Tiger Schulmann) and Andrew Ball.

Heavy hitters like these still have to learn the ropes. Here are some reasons off the top of my head, in no particular order: Joe Schilling, Wayne Barrett and Artem Levin. When bobbing and weaving begins during contract negotiations, the Law of Diminishing Returns is probably sending Andrew’s amateur career an eviction notice. Before Christopher Gray took this gig – case in point – three others took discretion to be the better part of valor.

Off first bell, Christopher sustained a broken rib

Off first bell, Christopher sustained a broken rib.

There was frustration on display in Andrew’s having to chase down a quarry with more flight than fight. Off first bell, Christopher sustained a broken rib. His corner wanted him to quit but – despite appearances – courage doesn’t always pose for a photo op. This was one in which the doc got it right, while Andrew had to settle for a night at the races. What should’ve been an omen was a contender from Chicago for the WKA’s Northeast title. Who’s registering voters in this precinct?

Winner: Andrew Ball by TKO after 3 Rounds (Physician Stoppage).

Munah Holland (Team Tiger Schulmann in New Jersey) vs.
Jennie Nedell (Longo Competition Team on Long Island)
Glory/ K-1 Professional Kickboxing Rules │ 135 lbs. │ 3×3.

You can learn mechanics in the gym and groove them into moves by sparring. There is only pass/fail grading, though, in the school of hard knocks. On Ray Longo’s teaching to this test, Jennie Nedell should be an inspiration to ordinary mortals without super powers.

Jennie Nedell (on the left) should be an inspiration to ordinary mortals without super powers.

Jennie Nedell (on the left) should be an inspiration to ordinary mortals without super powers.

Jennie has been bringing discipline and determination – if not dominance – to her performances, since joining the Serra-Longo crew. On June the 13th, her work ethic was margin enough for victory over a very seasoned Casey Bohrman. It was also enough – on the caliber of Casey’s competition – to graduate Jennie from rookies to rankings.

Even rarer than super powers in this sport are managers │ career developers like Ray Longo.

Even rarer than super powers in this sport are managers │ career developers like Ray Longo.

Even rarer than super powers in this sport are managers │ career developers like Ray Longo. If he’d hit the sweet spot so often on Wall Street, the SEC would probably have Ray on its What Does He Know That Others Don’t Watch List. What Ray knows, apparently, is that Munah Holland could do for Jennie’s rep what Archie Moore did for Cassius Clay’s on November 15, 1962.

 Against the 2007 NY Daily News Golden Gloves Boxing Champion, World Combat League, Bellator and Invicta FC veteran, Jennie knew it’d have been game over conceding command to Munah. In the early going, Jennie’s counters were just enough to throw Munah off her game. In the heavier going, it was Jennie commanding the cavalry with Munah holding down the fort.

It was Jennie commanding the cavalry with Munah holding down the fort

If Eric Haycraft thinks he’s playing it safe in matching Lindsay Scheer Haycraft with Jennie at Glory 19, think of it like this. For all of their playing it safe, there’s no place for Eric and Lindsay to go but down. Shout out to Eric and Lindsay from Miriam Nakomoto.

Winner: Jennie Nedell by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28.

In playing it safe, there’s no place to go but down.

In playing it safe, there’s no place to go but down.

Dom Biondo (Alpha Omega on Long Island) vs.
Giovanni Moljo (Team Top Notch from Miami by way of Chicago)
Glory/ K-1 Professional Kickboxing Rules │ 143 lbs. │ 3×3.

In working a Combat at the Capitale show, ring officials have to multi-task between Low Kick, Glory/K-1 Kickboxing and Muay Thai. Giovanni Moljo took them somewhere that I’ve only seen once before, when ‘The Alien Fighter’ Manson Gibson beamed down on Shawn Yarborough at WCK’s Primm Valley finale on December 9, 2009. (See “Ceremonial Combat at the Casino on a Cemetery” in Muay Thaimes®, Vol. IV, No. 1, Spring of 2010 on p. 25.) Between rounds two and three in that bout, ‘The Alien Fighter’ wasn’t just DQ’d but also suspended by NSAC, proving that there is some semblance of normalcy, even in Nevada.

It took just an uppercut for Biondo to split the prankster’s gloves and to cash his chipsGiovanni Moljo also patrolled the frontier of normalcy with his long day’s journey into night. Nothing in Giovanni’s performance even remotely resembled a professional kickboxing offense. Neither did he exhibit any capacity or willingness to defend himself, other than to cover up in the corner once Dom called his bluff. It took just an uppercut for Biondo to split the prankster’s gloves and to cash his chips.

Nothing in Giovanni’s performance even remotely resembled a professional kickboxing offense. Photo by Peter Marney for Muay Thaimes ®.

Nothing in Giovanni’s performance even remotely resembled a professional kickboxing offense. Photo by Peter Marney for Muay Thaimes ®.

Had Shakespeare covered this beat, he might’ve described a “player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more [in] a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” (Macbeth, Act 5, Scene 5) Whoever brokered Moljo for this match shouldn’t expect Lou to take his call the next time he dials the phone.

Winner: Dom Biondo by TKO at 1:30 of Round 2.

Zaravkh Abashev (Lions Martial Arts in Brooklyn) vs.
Christian Rojas (Alpha Omega from Chile by way of Long Island)
Glory/ K-1 Professional Kickboxing Rules │ 139 lbs. │ 3×3.

With two new shows in New Jersey alone – Trinity Kickboxing Championships and World Class Kickboxing Championships – Glory/K-1 rules are on a roll. Whenever something like this happens, we should be mindful of another rule that makes fortunes on Wall Street: buy the rumor then sell the fact. The fact we should be selling is that Glory/K-1 rules are defined by what they’re not, meaning they’re not Muay Thai. In other words, Glory/K-1 kickboxing is Muay Thai without the clinch, elbows and sweeps.

Glory │ K-1 kickboxing is Muay Thai without the clinch, elbows and sweeps. Photo by Peter Marney for Muay Thaimes ®.

Glory │ K-1 kickboxing is Muay Thai without the clinch, elbows and sweeps. Photo by Peter Marney for Muay Thaimes ®.

The message in this media is caveat emptor. Let the buyer beware. Don’t buy into a kickboxing contract, like Zaravkh Abashev did, without reading the fine print. After twice warning Zaravkh to refrain from Muay Thai sweeps, ref Vincent Chapple penalized the repeat offender a point for his third rule violation. Coming back with a judo throw, Abashev bought himself a DQ.

To cop a Rolling Stones quote: “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need.” What we need throughout this entire sport are more officials like Vincent Chapple, who reward our faith with their integrity. With Vincent on the job, we get “the best of times” at shows like Combat at the Capitale.

Winner: Christian Rojas by DQ at 2:44 of Round 1.

Ref Vincent ChappleCombat at the Capitale
Full Results

Friday, October 17, 2014

PROFESSIONAL KICKBOXING│ GLORY RULES:

Villi Bello (Ardon’s Sweet Science in Brooklyn) def. Niko Tsigaris (Lions Martial Arts in Brooklyn) by Split Decision: 29-28, 28-29, and 29-28 │ 153 lbs. │ 3×3.

Jennie Nedell (on the left) vs. Munah HollandJennie Nedell (Longo Competition Team on Long Island) def. Munah Holland (Team Tiger Schulmann in New Jersey) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28 │ 135 lbs. │ 3×3.

Dom Biondo (Alpha Omega on Long Island) def. Giovanni Moljo (Team Top Notch from Miami by way of Chicago) by TKO at 1:30 of Round 2 │ 143 lbs. │ 3×3.

Lashawn Alcocks (Dambakely Martial Arts in North Carolina) def. Jason Lee (Team Inner G in The Bronx) by Unanimous Decision: 30-26, 29-28, and 30-27 │ 160 lbs. │ 3×3.

Shennen Maceo (Team Tiger Schulmann on Long Island) def. Brian Burgan (Soo Doo Muay Thai in Detroit) by TKO at 2:29 of Round 2 │ 147 lbs. │ 3×3.

John Salgado (Team Inner G on Long Island) def. Chris Wagner (Cannon on Long Island) by Unanimous Decision │ 172 lbs. │ 3×3.

Christian Rojas (Alpha Omega from Chile by way of Long Island) def. Zaravkh Abashev (Lions Martial Arts in Brooklyn) by DQ at 2:44 of Round 1 │ 139 lbs. │ 3×3.

John Salgado (Team Inner G on Long Island) def. Chris Wagner (Team Cannon on Long Island) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-27, and 30-27 │ 172 lbs. │ 3×3.

WKA NYS AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP│ MODIFIED MUAY THAI RULES:

Malik Blake (Team Tiger Schulmann in NYC) def. Chris Edmund (Wilkie’s Warriors in New Jersey) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-27, and 30-27 │ 175 lbs. │ 3×2.

Malik Blake

Malik Blake

AMATEUR KICKBOXING│ GLORY RULES:

WKA Northeast Championship
Andrew Ball
(Neglia Competition Team in Brooklyn) def. Christopher Gray (Team Top Notch in Chicago) by TKO after 3 Rounds (Physician Stoppage) │ 185 lbs. │ 4×2.

Shannon Halstead (Dambakely Martial Arts in North Carolina) def. Michael Musilli (Longo Competition Team on Long Island) by KO at 1:53 of Round 1: 160 lbs. │ 3×2.

Missael Sanchez (Team Tiger Schulmann in NYC) def. Orondo Henry (Soo Doo Muay Thai in Detroit) by Unanimous Decision: 30-27, 30-27, and 30-27 │ 138 lbs. │ 3×2.

Nazim Sadikhov (Lions Martial Arts in Brooklyn) def. Justin Montalvo (Longo Competition Team on Long Island) by Split Decision: 29-28, 28-29, and 29-28 │ 157 lbs. │ 3×2.

George Maldarelli (Neglia Competition Team on Long Island) def. Brandon Hagar (Soo Doo Muay Thai in Detroit) by TKO at 0:55 of Round 2 │ 155 lbs. │ 3×2.

Phumi Nkuta (Longo Competition Team in New Jersey) def. Pancho Theuer (Soo Doo Muay Thai in Detroit) by KO at 0:26 of Round 2 │ 130 lbs. │ 3×2.

For more eye candy, visit the Photo Galleries of: Peter Marney, Brendan Ormsby and Dennis A. Clark.

So long as our law makers in Albany remain indifferent to the possibility that three blind mice could get voter ID’s, don’t lose any sleep over polling fraud. Some show producers play zero sum games with fans and fighters, because that’s really why they’re in it. Mostly it’s because that’s just all they know how to do. Thin skins seem to distract them from their dwindling attendance, commensurate with a general preference for not having to hold your nose.

End Story MarkIf there’s any hidden logic in this algorithm, it is circular reasoning. Either settle for a vicious circle – which traps our cottage industry in tunnel vision’s circuit – or engineer progress into a conduit that actually develops careers for promotion to the Winners Circle. Although economics is value neutral, success usually comes to whoever gets it right. That is Lou Neglia’s secret sauce for the sweet taste of his success. Fans and fighters both savor this kind of flavor.

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