This past weekend It’s Showtime put on a double-header with two events capped off with an epic encounter between three-time K-1 World Grand Prix champion Peter Aerts losing for the first time since his unsuccessful bid to win the 2010 K-1 Field to top-ranked heavyweight Tyrone Spong.
While they put together two impressive events the talk of the town was the purchase of It’s Showtime by Bas Boon’s Glory Sports International, the parent organization of rival kickboxing organization Glory World Series and folding It’s Showtime’s roster into their own.
It’s Showtime were founded in the late nineties in a time where all the top talent resided under FEG’s K-1 banner that resided in Japan.
Promotional founder Simon Rutz built upon his base of European talent and over 14 years built a must-see fight roster and proved that stand-up fighting promoters could be successful without the ‘K-1’ tag in the event header.
While the fall of the Amsterdam-based organization’s empire is saddening, the fight community can’t help but smile, with this purchase all the top strikers on the planet are kept under the same umbrella for the first time since FEG fell under significant financial peril in 2010.
While we are on the topic of the K-1 organization, there are still discussions of bringing the K-1 World Grand Prix to the forefront again and hosting a sixteen-man field culminating with a final based in New York City.
While on paper that seems like a great idea, there is a cloud of controversy surrounding who owns the trademark of the longest running kickboxing organization and a serious lack of stars to promote while Glory World Series holds all the cards.
Kickboxing isn’t dead right now, it’s surely on life support so we have to place all or faith in Glory to turn the tide for arguably the most exciting sport on the planet, the Netherlands-based organization currently have television deals in place to televise their events in 80 Countries, including HDNet for North America.
With their partnership with Total Sports Asia financially they might be the most stable kickboxing promotion on the planet, let’s all cross our fingers it stays that way for some time to come.