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Missed Fists: South Korea’s ROAD FC returns with a vengeance

Jung Hyun Lee throws a flying kick at Dong Hyuk Ko at a ROAD FC show in Jamsil, South Korea, on May 23, 2020
@Grabaka_Hitman, Twitter

Welcome to the latest edition of Missed Fists where we shine a light on fights from across the globe that may have been overlooked in these hectic times where it seems like there’s an MMA show every other day.

As the world adjusts to the new normal, we see pockets of society reclaiming their entertainment in defiance of the coronavirus. Saitama. Belarus. Jacksonville. Exotic locales, all, but just as importantly cities that have recently hosted MMA events.

Now, Jamsil joins the cause: That’s right, South Korean MMA is back.

Jung Hyun Lee vs. Dong Hyuk Ko
Young Min Ji vs. Yoon Joong Kim
Shin Hee Min vs. Ha Jun Kim
Nandin-Erdene Munguntsooj vs. Se Young Kim
Dong Hyun Bae vs. Jae Hyuk Heo

In partnership with AfreecaTV, ROAD FC resumed operations this past Saturday for the first time in four months after canceling shows in April and May. Taking place at Hot6ix Afreeca Colosseum in Jamsil, South Korea, the event featured the wild action you expect to see when you tune in to Korean MMA, as evidenced by Jung Hyun Lee and Dong Hyuk Ko, above.

That’s Ko using a flying knee like a jab and bounding off the fence for a (sadly, errant) “Showtime Kick.” And that’s Lee responding in kind with lunging high kicks and haymakers. Lee was making his pro debut and Ko entered this fight with an 0-6 record, so defense was clearly a secondary concern.

Ko showed some Korean Michel Pereira potential, but like with the Brazilian Michel Pereira, it’s not an approach with a 100 percent success rate.

The bantamweight bout between Young Min Ji and Yoon Joong Kim was also an absolute brawl:

Thank goodness these were only three-minute rounds, I’m not sure these two could maintain this pace for a full 15. Ji (red gloves, non-blue hair) picked up the unanimous decision win.

In other bantamweight action, Shin Hee Min validated the old adage of “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again,” catching Ha Jun Kim full-on with a jumping knee after only clipping him on the first attempt.

Flashy technique and dogged determination? Those are the qualities that get you noticed around here.

So do 40-second TKO wins. Here’s Mongolia’s Nandin-Erdene Munguntsooj walking down Se Young Kim.

And we can’t leave a ROAD FC show without checking in on everyone’s favorite combat sports crooner, Jae Hyuk Heo.

Unfortunately, according to @Grabaka_Hitman, Heo did not sing his own walkout music this time; even more unfortunately, he lost Dong Hyun Bae to drop his record to 1-3.

Let’s just remember happier times, okay?

Artem Bachun vs. Vladislav Bezobrazov
Aydemir Kazbekov vs. Nikolay Taleronak
Artur Myagchilov vs. Valery Emelyanenko

It just occurred to me that Belarusian Fighting Championship has been the No. 2 MMA promotion in the world for the past six weeks or so by default. So congrats!

In all seriousness, good on these fighters for making the most of these opportunities under less than ideal circumstances. Like featherweight Artem Bachun, who improved to 4-0 with this delightful Ezekiel choke at BFC 53 in Minsk yesterday.

In terms of sheer aggression though, the award for most impressive finish has to go to Aydemir Kazbekov for this ground assault on Nikolay Taleronak.

That’s a man who was settling for nothing less than a finish and since Taleronak was too tough to just roll over and let the ref save him, Kazbekov convinces him to save himself with a textbook armbar.

Lastly, let’s check in on how Valery “Not Fedor” Emelyanenko is doing.

Oh. He’s 0-6 now, not exactly a Fedor-like start to his career. Though like I always say when seeing the results of my fight predictions, mathematically speaking 0-6 is as impressive as 6-0.

Sergey Bobryshev vs. Danil Vaganov
Ivan Bogdanov vs. Alexander Shingarenko

Speaking of triangle chokes, here’s a beauty by Sergey Bobryshev from an M-1 Global event on May 17 in St. Petersburg, Russia. That is airtight the second it’s locked in and I’m not sure Vaganov even had a second to register how much danger he was in. Thankfully, the referee saw him going out. Nice win for Bobryshev, a lightweight who improved to 7-0 with none of those wins coming by way of decision.

Middleweight Ivan Bogdanov doesn’t have much use for the judges either and based on this body punch TKO on the ground, you can see why.

Oddly, the Tapology page for this event lists the fight result as “KO/TKO, Refusal to Fight,” which seems a little unfair to Alexander Shingarenko given that his internal organs have been permanently rearranged.

Klaudia Sygula vs. Karolina Sobek
Kacper Miklasz vs. Karol Grzesiuk

Putting the second Wotore event this far down in the feature seems disrespectful, but I encourage everyone looking for something different in their combat sports to head over to Wotore’s official site and shell out $5 USD for the pay-per-view replay. What do you have to lose?

Just look at this presentation:

I get that this is supposed to look like blood, but I’m getting more of a children’s treehouse vibe.

Also… Caesar is watching.

Leg locks were the order of the day in Katowice, Poland, last Saturday. Check out this fun sequence between Klaudia Sygula and Karolina Sobek.

At the first Wotore event, going out of the ring meant you lost. They changed that rule this time around, so Sygula could go out, hang on to Sobek’s leg, and work to finish a submission hold, which she did. If your local jiu-jitsu school doesn’t teach you moat variation leg locks, you may want to ask them to add that to the rotation.

There was nothing fun about how Kacper Miklasz set up his leg lock finish.

That’s just pure savagery.

Rumble in the Bronx Fight Club

If you want some idea of just how hard up fight fans are for any combat sports action, the Rumble in the Bronx Fight Club held what appeared to be an amateur free-for-all show at an undisclosed location in New York.

I can’t tell you what the action was like, but I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t include this video of a fighter yarfing mid-fight and then the cameraman subsequently slipping on said yarf.

MMA is back!


What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?

This poll is closed

  • 33%
    Jung Hyun Lee and Dong Hyuk Ko put on an aerial show
    (10 votes)
  • 20%
    Shin Hee Min’s flying knee
    (6 votes)
  • 23%
    Sergey Bobryshev puts Danil Vaganov to sleep
    (7 votes)
  • 13%
    Ivan Bogdanov destroys his opponent’s insides
    (4 votes)
  • 3%
    Klaudia Sygula explores the studio space
    (1 vote)
  • 6%
    Other (leave comment below)
    (2 votes)
30 votes total Vote Now

If you know of a recent fight or event that you think may have been overlooked, or a promotion that could use some attention, please let us know on Twitter – @JedKMeshew and @AlexanderKLee – using the hashtag #MissedFists.

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