Former UFC fighter Kim Dong Hyun’s protégé Kim Sang Wook (29) took a step closer to entering the UFC with a victory in the quarter-finals of ROAD TO UFC.
Kim defeated Kazuma Maruyama (30-Japan) via submission (rear-naked choke) at 3:08 of the first round at ROAD TO UFC Season 2: Episodes 3 & 4 in the lightweight opening round at the UFC Performance Institute Shanghai in China on Monday (28 November).
He capitalised on his one chance with the finish. Kim struggled early in the match, allowing Maruyama to land a calf kick. However, after defending a tackle, he got up and immediately locked in a rear-naked choke grip. He then wrapped his leg around his opponent’s left leg, immobilising him and forcing Maruyama to tap.먹튀검증
In his post-fight press conference, Kim said, “Before the fight, I was so scared that I was on such a big stage that I felt like I was going to cry. At that time, coach Lee Jung-won told me, ‘You went to the UDT (Naval Special Warfare Squadron) and went through everything in your life for this moment,’ so I was able to concentrate. It was nice to see my teammates happy after the win, rather than thinking about myself first,” he said, giving credit to his coach and teammates.
“I would like to thank my coach, Kim Dong-hyun, who is always by my side,” he said, “He is the one who made it possible for me to get to this point, and I will always be grateful to him.
Kim was the first South Korean fighter to compete in the UFC, the world’s premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organisation. In 18 fights in the UFC, he compiled a record of 13 wins, 4 losses, and 1 no-contest, and reached a world ranking of No. 6. After stepping away from the sport, he founded Team Sturgeon to help train younger fighters.
Kim Dong-hyun, who is now a successful broadcaster, has stepped down from his coaching role, but he still continues to support Kim Sang-wook.
Competing in the bantamweight tournament, Lee advanced to the semi-finals with a first-round TKO victory over Rana Rudra Pratap Singh (26-India) without taking a single shot.
Lee pressed forward from the outset, forcing Singh into the cage before taking him to the ground with a flying leg, where he unleashed an endless barrage of ground and pound and elbows on his ‘Ant-Hell’ nicknamed opponent. When Singh was unable to put up much of a fight, Reffery called for the TKO.
Lee, who did not allow any punches in the fight, said, “It was over quickly, so I have nothing to show for it. I ran 5 kilometres on the treadmill this week and it was harder. With two matches left until the final, any damage to my face will hinder my preparation.”
‘Twin Knives’ Sang Hoon Yoo, 33, knocked on the UFC’s door with an upset TKO victory over Chris Hoffman, 33-Philippines. The non-tournament winner can earn a UFC contract based on performance.
Yoo was outworked on the scorecards until the second round, when he allowed an overhand hook and takedown by Hoffman. In the third round, he was knocked down by a left hook, and the damage was done.
This is when Yoo’s true colours came out. After surviving a close call, Yoo scored a knockdown with a right straight counter timed to his opponent’s leg kick. After getting back to his feet and following his opponent to the back, Yoo landed a flying knee kick followed by a series of knees that put him down again. A flurry of punches followed, forcing the referee to stop the fight.
After the fight, Yoo said, “I’m not aiming to be UFC champion. My goal is the BMF championship belt that covers the real deal,” and “Dana White, I want the BMF belt. Please put me in the UFC” and asked UFC President Dana White for a contract.
In the quarter-finals of the lightweight tournament, Hong (33) met former UFC fighter Long Zhu (23-China) and was TKO’d by a flurry of punches just 2 minutes and 17 seconds into the bout.
Also competing in the lightweight tournament, Ki-Bin Kim (32) was disqualified at 2:22 of the second round after hitting Bahaterborough Baterborati (25-China) in the back of the head.
After being pushed back by a first-round flurry, Kisibin knocked his opponent down with a second-round right hand. However, he got too excited and hit his prone opponent in the back of the head with at least four hammerfists in quick succession, robbing him of a much-deserved victory.