Long time favourite with the fans, Peter Aerts, put on a crowd pleaser of a performance against up-and-coming Jamal Ben Saddik.
Here are the highlights. Go to Glory World Series for the full fight and/or full event.
A stormy looking card for 2013′s UFC in Japan. Sunday, March 3rd – a Wandy versus Stann headliner might not be to the taste of many North American UFC fans, but the Japanese fans have a strong sense of nostalgia, and it will be very natuskashii to have the knuckle-twirling Silva back in the Saitama Super Arena.
Yushin Okami will face Hector Lombard, Taknori Gomi to fight Diego Sanchez, Riki Fukuda against Brad Tavares. Takeya Mizugaki and Mizuto Hirota will also be highly anticipated by the native crowd.
After four fights in one night, two of which ended with him knocking out his opponent, Semmy Schilt emerged as the winner of the GLORY Heavyweight Grand Slam, laying claim to the $400,000 grand prize and underlining his position as the world’s number one heavyweight kickboxer.
Sixteen fighters fought it out in the ground-breaking one-night single-elimination tournament, with a ‘Best of Three’ rule in operation for the first three stages. The rule, designed to eliminate needless injuries, meant that any fighter who won the first two rounds of a bout would advance to the next stage without the need for the third round to be fought.
The field consisted of household names and rising stars, with the likes of Peter Aerts, Semmy Schilt and Remy Bonjasky lining up alongside Gokhan Saki, Jamal Ben Saddik and Daniel Ghita. Playing out over fifteen fights, the tournament saw eight bouts end with a stoppage of some kind, making for a knockout percentage of just under 55%.
“I’ve won many tournaments but this is the best ever,” Schilt said afterwards. “It was a hard tournament with some very good fighters and some very hard fights, for me and for everyone else. But all the struggle is worth it to win a competition like this. GLORY is home to the best fighters in the world and I am very proud to be the winner of the first-ever Grand Slam tournament.”
TOKYO, Japan (Dec. 30, 2012) – Shinya Aoki (31-6) and Antonio McKee (28-4-2) both made weight on the first attempt at today’s official weigh-ins at the Sunroute Plaza Hotel in Tokyo, Japan for the DREAM 18 portion of the New Year’s Eve historic double-header mega-fight card at Saitama Super Arena, live on GloryWorldSeries.com (tape delayed broadcast on CBS Sports Network in The U.S.).
Aoki was exactly on the 154 pound/70 kilogram weight limit for his fight with UFC veteran McKee, who then hit the scales at 153 pounds/69.5 kilograms. Their fight, which headlines the New Year’s Eve event, has been nearly two years in the making.
Of the other 14 fighters on the DREAM 18 card, all except Denis Kang (35-15-2, 2 NC) and Will Brooks (7-0) made weight on the first attempt.
Kang was 1.32 pounds/600 grams overweight when he first stood on the scales. He hit the sauna for an hour and made weight on his second attempt, touching down at 185 pounds/84 kilograms for his middleweight fight with Melvin Manhoef (26-9-1, 1 NC).
Brooks was 1.2 kilos overweight for his 154/pound/70 kilogram meeting with Japan’s Satoru Kitoaka (30-11-9). He was given two hours to lose the excess, but returned to the scales after one hour to make a second attempt. He was still .5 overweight and was given another hour to hit 70 kilograms, which he managed on the third and final try.
Complete DREAM 18 Weigh-In Results:
TOKYO, Japan (Dec. 30, 2012) – All 16 of the superstar heavyweights taking part in the highly-anticipated GLORY 4 Tokyo – Heavyweight Grand Slam, one-night, single-elimination kickboxing tournament hit the scales today, one day before the event at Saitama Super Arena, live on GloryWorldSeries.com (tape delayed broadcast on CBS Sports Network in The U.S.)
The weigh-ins took place at the Sunroute Plaza Hotel in Tokyo. The tournament fighters were joined by the fighters slated for action in the three Superfights that will unfold between each stage of the tournament.
The event represents one-half of a double-header mega-event that will begin with the DREAM 18 Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fight card and continue with the GLORY 4 Tokyo – Heavyweight Grand Slam event. Both shows are being presented by Glory Sports International, parent company of GLORY, which is committed to continuing the tradition of huge, end-of-year shows in Japan.
“It’s going to be a memorable night with a tremendous amount of world-class action,” said GLORY Chairman Pierre Andurand as he presented the tournament fighters to a packed press conference. “We want to revive large-scale shows in Japan and this is the first step towards achieving that goal.”
ROBIN VAN ROOSMALEN VS. YUICHIRO NAGASHIMA
JEROME LE BANNER VS. KOICHI PETTAS
TOKYO, Japan (Dec. 13, 2012) – World No. 2 ranked lightweight (154 pounds/70 kilograms) Robin van Roosmalen (37-14-3, 12 KO’s) has been confirmed for a Superfight with colorful Japanese fighter Yuichiro Nagashima (17-5, 12 KO’s) at the GLORY 4 TOKYO – Heavyweight Grand Slam event at Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo, Japan on New Year’s Eve.
Also confirmed is a heavyweight showdown between the legendary ‘Battle Cyborg’ Jerome Le Banner (72-21-2, 58 KO’s) and Japanese Kyokushin Karate stylist Koichi Pettas (26-7-1, 15 KO’s). The three-round battle pits the heavy hands and raw power of Le Banner against the hard-kicking technicality of Pettas and should provide for an exhilarating match.
“GLORY is home to the world’s top stand-up fighters and these two fights showcase that perfectly. In the first we have the world’s No. 2 lightweight fighter, who smashed his way through our ‘Final 8’ tournament earlier this year and fought the world’s No. 1 ranked lightweight Giorgio Petroysan in a thrilling final,” says Glory Sports International CEO Marcus Luer.
“Nagashima is known the world over for his
TOKYO, Japan (Dec. 13, 2012) – Two of Japan’s top featherweights (145 pounds/66 kilograms) have been added to the DREAM 18 portion of the stacked, doubleheader fight card that Glory Sports International will present at Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo, Japan on New Year’s Eve, immediately prior to the GLORY 4 Tokyo – Heavyweight Grand Slam, one-night, 16-man tournament.
Tatsuya ‘Crusher’ Kawajiri (31-7-2) formerly the world’s No. 1 lightweight, is will enter the ring riding a four-fight win streak and face Judo specialist Michihiro Omigawa (13-12-1), who recently departed the UFC to return to fighting in his native Japan.
“Kawajiri has been one of the fighting world’s top
NEW YEAR’S EVE MMA MATCHUPS ANNOUNCED
SHINYA AOKI FACES ANTONIO MCKEE
BIBIANO FERNANDES BATTLES YOSHIRO MAEDA
MELVIN MANHOEF SQUARES OFF WITH DENIS KANG
TOKYO, Japan (Dec. 7, 2012) - DREAM Lightweight (155 pounds/70 kilograms) Champion Shinya Aoki (31-6) will face battle-tested wrestling specialist Antonio McKee (28-4-2) at the DREAM Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) event at Saitama Super Arena on New Year’s Eve.
The matchup was announced today by officials from DREAM and Glory Sports International, which is presenting the year-end show along with the GLORY 4 Tokyo – Heavyweight Grand Slam event.
Also announced was a middleweight (185 pounds/84 kilograms) fight between Melvin Manhoef (26-9-1, 1 NC) and Denis Kang (35-15-2, 2 NC) and a 139-pound catchweight meeting between former DREAM bantamweight (135 pounds/61 kilograms) champion Bibiano Fernandes (12-3) and Yoshiro Maeda (30-11-2) of Japan.
“Shinya Aoki is already
HEAVYWEIGHT GRAND SLAM 16-MAN KICKBOXING TOURNAMENT AT SAITAMA SUPER ARENA ON NEW YEAR’S EVE.
World No. 1 ranked heavyweight and No. 1 tournament seed Semmy Schilt (39-6, 18 KO’s), who won the GLORY heavyweight title earlier this year, drew Brice Guidon (28-7, 4 KO’s) of France as an opening round opponent. Schilt, an Ashihara Karate black belt, is a notoriously difficult opponent because of his size (2.12 meters/6-foot-11) and his unique style, which explains why only four men have ever beaten him in his entire career.
Guidon’s style is characterized by excellent timing. He is the WPMF European Heavyweight and WPMF World Super-Heavyweight champion and has fought Schilt once before, going the distance with him in Moscow, Russia earlier this year.
No. 2 seed is Gokhan Saki (77-15, 53 KO’s)