clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Watch: Giorgio Petrosyan makes victorious return to the ring

Giorgio Petrosyan returned to the ring on Saturday night, his first fight since his shock KO loss to Andy Ristie at GLORY 12 NEW YORK in November 2013. On this evidence, his confidence has suffered no damage. Can he get back to the #1 spot in 2015?

Petrosyan has infamously brittle hands and has broken them several times. It happened again in the fight with Ristie and led to him taking 2014 off. Speculation was rampant all year as to what he would look like when he finally came back.

He answered those queries in Turin, Italy on Saturday night when he headlined the Thai Boxe Mania card in a fight against Erkan Varol of Turkey, a limited but durable journeyman with more than 100 fights to his name.

The contest was advertised as being fought under "GLORY rules", which meant limited clinch and no elbow strikes. Petrosyan was on fine form. Certainly there were no signs that his confidence had been shattered by the sole KO loss of his career last winter (Petrosyan may consider it the only real loss of his career at all - he believes he was 'poisoned' by a Thai promoter some years ago, given bad water so he would lose his fight).

Varol's record only contains one KO loss but Petrosyan looked close to stopping him in the second round. Varol was forced to take a count after eating a left head kick and then some knees to the jaw whilst shelling up. The round ended on the restart, buying him recovery time.

Petrosyan didn't seem to be holding back when he let his punches go, although it seemed - and this is possibly just my imagination - that he might have thrown less than usual. But certainly when he did let them go, including the left cross, there was no sense that they weren't being throw full power.

the doctor 2015 by dm_5080020d0bb7a

With the dust shaken off Petrosyan goes back into camp immediately and faces rising German talent Enriko Kehl in April (Kehl will, coincidentally, face Varol next month in Turkey). Kehl won the 2014 K-1 MAX Championship by default after Buakaw Banchamek left the ring instead of fighting an extra round in their October fight in Thailand.

Kehl is a top talent and his fight with Petrosyan will headline the Oktagon: 20th Anniversary show in Milan, Italy on April 11. That takes Petrosyan into the second quarter of 2015. The big question is whether he seeks to avenge himself on Andy Ristie after that. Petrosyan is a proud and competitive fighter - it is hard to imagine he doesn't want to settle the score with Ristie this year.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bloody Elbow Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your MMA and UFC news from Bloody Elbow