Month: February 2019
Volkan Oezdemir is going back to his roots in preparation for Dominick Reyes at UFC on ESPN+ 5 on March 16.
The 29-year-old is training back home at his old gym in Switzerland and it’s not by choice. Legally, the Hard Knocks 365 member can’t enter back into the United States until his visa issues are sorted out.
“I decided to go back to do my camp back [home]” Oezedemir told MMA News. “Waiting for my return to the U.S., it’s just going to be a while waiting on my visa right now. I’m back to my roots right now, I’m training at the same gym I’ve been doing most of my fights with. It’s kind of an old school vibe around me and it’s really cool.”
It’s enough to strike fear in fighters across the globe.
Aung La N Sang is adamant he’s more powerful than ever as he prepares to defend his ONE Middleweight World Title.
“I’m going to be the biggest, the strongest and fastest, the most explosive and most athletic I’ve ever been for this coming fight,” declared Myanmar’s Aung La, who will fight Japan’s Ken Hasegawa on the historic ONE: A New Era card in Tokyo on March 31.
“I took some time off and I worked on getting stronger and stronger and I feel I am,” said the “Burmese Python. “All my injuries have healed up and I feel sharp. In the last fight I was pretty banged up, but all my injuries have gone and I’m going to be sharp, I’m going to be fast and I’m going to be ready.”
More staggeringly, Aung La claims he hits harder than ever before.
Interviewing a fighter multiple times across a span of months or years offers some unique opportunities. One is the chance to ask a question you’ve asked before and find out if the answer has changed. This is not out of any wish to trip the interviewee up or pick at inconsistencies, and in any event it’s hard to imagine catching Logan Storley, surely one of the straightest shooters in mixed martial arts, in a “gotcha” moment. The appeal is in finding out if the answer reveals any changes in how the fighter views himself, his team, organization, opponents or even the sport itself.
Talking to the 26-year-old South Dakota native and Bellator MMA welterweight contender for a third time as he prepared to take on Ion Pascu in the co-main event of Bellator 215 this weekend offered several chances to re-ask questions, the first of which was how he felt about his last fight. It was a bit of a surprise to hear Storley — normally a harsh critic of his own performances — admit to being happy with his last fight, a second-round ground-and-pound stoppage of A.J. Matthews at Bellator 204 last August.
“It felt good,” Storley said. “Things really clicked that night and I got to positions where I wanted to be, wore him out early and got him tired, and then got to really pick him apart. So it was a good game plan, and he definitely felt the heavy pressure on top and couldn’t really do much.”
Antoniyar will meet Malaysian striker Audreylaura “Ice Comet” Boniface, in what will be one of the nights most explosive encounters.
The night will see the promotional and professional debut of Tial Thang.
The 25-year-old trains alongside Aung La N Sang in Florida at Hard Knocks 365 gym and is excited about putting on a show at ONE: REIGN OF GLORY.
The Chin state native will meet Cambodia’s Rin Saroth in a catch-weight 68 Kg contest. Saroth is a stand-up veteran with over 100 Kun Khmer bouts under his belt. The Cambodian joined ONE in 2015 and has accumulated both knockout and submission victories under the ONE banner.
South Africa – South African MMA star Dricus du Plessishas cracked KSW’s best fights of 2018 list.
Du Plessis (12-2) gained recognition for his thrilling debut in the promotion against Roberto Soldic (15-3) in April last year, with their showdown coming in at number three on the six-fight selection.
‘Stillknocks’ TKO’d Soldic in the second round to win the welterweight belt after weathering an early barrage from the heavy-handed Croatian at Centennial Hall in Wroclaw, Poland.
Soldic, however, returned the favour six months later with a third-round KO to reclaim the strap from Du Plessis at Wembley Arena in London, England.
Du Plessis, who is the EFC welterweight and middleweight champion, will next face fellow former KSW 77kg champ Borys Mankowski (19-7-1) at the Atlas Arena in Lodz, Poland on March 23.
While based at Team CIT MMA in Pretoria, Du Plessis is currently training alongside the likes of UFC superstars Luke Rockhold (16-4) and Robbie Lawler (28-12) at Hard Knocks 365 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.