Today, join Bloody Elbow for live fight coverage of Glory 7 Milan featuring Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Hafid El Boustati. Glory 7 airs today, Saturday, April 20 at 3:30 p.m. ET / 12:30 p.m. PT. Watch a Glory 7 live stream right here at Bloody Elbow, and join us for live fight coverage, including results and discussion.
Although this is a very strong card, with a number of top fighters in action, there's really one thing that makes this a must watch show - Giorgio Petrosyan. The current Glory champion and 2 time K-1 champion is a truly rare fighter. He's the best pound for pound kickboxer on the planet today - a master fighter who shows supreme technical skills in every level. He's rolled through every single challenger placed before him. Andy Souwer, Artur Kyshenko, Robin van Roosmalen, Albert Kraus... the list goes on and on. All have faced Petrosyan, and all have fallen.
How does he do it? How is it that this quiet, unassuming looking fighter has been able to put such a definitive lockdown on the most competitive division in kickboxing?
Who better to answer the question than the man himself? Petrosyan spoke to Bloody Elbow before this weekend - here are his own thoughts about why his style is successful:
In contrast to the Dutch style which provides an answer "tit for tat" I always try to hit without suffering to get to the result.
In addition, Petrosyan also cites his unique style, built out of his own system and not influenced by others:
My style has not undergone the influence of anyone... [it] is a way to combat that is born from the ideas of my qualities and my coach Alfio Romanut.
This idea that Petrosyan uses a style all his own is interesting, as is his argument that he eschews the Dutch style so heavily favored by strikers today. We previously touched on this difference in styles in this breakdown of Petrosyan vs. Albert Kraus here at Bloody Elbow:
The major difference between the Dutch kickboxing style and Petrosyan's is that where the Dutch flurry to set up kicks, Petrosyan uses his light lead leg, teep led style of traditional Muay Thai to get into position to land punches. He is almost the reverse of the Dutch tradition in that regard but in fact is a much better boxer than most of the kickboxers the Netherlands has ever produced. Landing a southpaw jab is typically a hard thing to do, it's just so easy to stop with your lead hand (as Rashad Evans demonstrated almost a hundred times and then did nothing to follow up against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at UFC 156). Petrosyan's teeps serve wonderfully to irritate his opponent and take their mind off of the boxing game however.
From the first engagement in the second round against Kraus, Petrosyan used his light lead foot from his traditional Thai stance to feint a teep then land with it far in front of him to land a traditional boxing style jab between Kraus' hands.
Ultimately, there are multiple answers to this question - and that's what makes Petrosyan so dangerous. His combination of boxing, precision kicks, timing, and his own personal style have created a riddle that has led to the most dominant reign in the history of the 70kg division.
Today, it's Hafid El Boustati's turn to try and solve that riddle. Can he be the one to end Petrosyan reign? I know this is combat sports and "anything can happen", but let's be honest here. No, he can't. Petrosyan is going to once again do what he does best - use his skills to make a world class fighter look like a rank amateur.
So why do we watch? Simply put, we watch to see the master once again in action - to watch the greatest of our time and a unique athlete ply his craft and once again prove why he is the world's #1. That's reason enough for me.
Join us here at Bloody Elbow for Glory 7 Milan live stream, results, discussion, and live fight coverage this Saturday, April 20.