This Saturday May 20 is the latest Glory event, and for this one, they are trying something a little different. For Glory 41 Holland, the emphasis is on the Superfight Series on UFC Fight Pass, with the event opening with the ESPN3 portion of the card. Here’s a breakdown of the big fights this Saturday.
RICO VERHOEVEN vs. ISMAEL LAZAAR
The main event is a non-title match that sees Heavyweight champion Verhoeven welcome Lazaar to Glory. Rico has been on an unstoppable rampage in Glory, scoring 5 title defenses and going undefeated in Glory since a 2012 loss to Semmy Schilt. He’s totally cleaned out the division, even defeating Badr Hari in December. Lazaar is an Enfusion Heavyweight champion and a solid addition to the Glory roster. But it’s going to take someone really special to derail Verhoeven, and that’s probably not Lazaar.
ROBIN VAN ROSSMALEN vs. PETCHPANOMRUNG KIATMOOKAO
This is a Featherweight title fight to determine a new champion for the division. That title is currently vacant, as Robin van Roosmalen won the belt last year, looking excellent in the process, but then failed to make weight earlier this year and lost the belt on the scale. The former Glory Lightweight champion is 2-0 as a Featherweight and has looked fantastic in both fights – if he can get his weight issues under control, he could be a dominant champion in the division. Thai fighter Petchpanomrung won a contender tournament in March to earn this shot. He is, of course, a Muay Thai fighter, which brings both the advantage of superb technique, but the disadvantage of needing to adjust to the Glory ruleset. Van Roosmalen has experience with this, going 1-1 in a pair of controversial fights with Sittichai. I think that gives him the edge here, but don’t be surprised if this one creates some judging controversy.
Verhoeven vs. Lazaar and the Featherweight title fight are the two big marquee matches on the Superfight Series, but the rest of the card is good too. Former top contender Murthel Groenhart takes on Alan Scheinson – Groenhart is an unpredictable, hot and cold fighter. An aggressive first round KO win for him is most likely here, but if Scheinson can survive that early storm, he has a shot at the upset. In a Light Heavyweight battle of veterans, Mourad Bouzidi faces Michael Duut. Duut was last seen in Glory defeating Danyo Ilunga in the company’s 2016 Fight of the Year. Both men have been around the game, though Bouzidi has the experience edge – this could be a very good fight, or it could be a bit plodding. Zakaria Zouggary makes a much anticipated Glory debut here. He made his name in Japan’s Shootboxing organization, but has had success around the world. He has a tough first fight here against Yetkin Ozkul, a good veteran, but also a fighter on the downward slide. Be sure to keep an eye on Zouggary, who could be a player at Lightweight. There’s also a solid battle between rising prospects in Tyjani Beztati vs. Youssef Assouik.
The Glory 41 card on ESPN3 includes a Heavyweight tournament. Semi-finals are Anderson Silva vs. Gianis Stoforidis and D’Angelo Marshall vs. Mohamad Abdallah. There’s a massive expence gap here between Silva and the rest of the field. He’s a highly accomplished veteran who holds wins over the likes of Hesdy Gerges, Remy Bonjasky, and Sergei Kharitonov among many others. If there’s a dark horse, it’s Marshall, a Superkombat tournament champion with decent experience who went to an extension round decision loss with Guto Inocente at Glory 37.
HESDY GERGES vs. TOMAS HRON
The featured Glory 41 fight was supposed to be Gerges vs. Chi Lewis-Parry – a rescheduled Heavyweight contest that Chopper Chi pulled out of earlier this year. But… Chopper Chi pulled out. Again. This time a hand injury was the culprit. So veteran Tomas Hron is in. Gerges is the more decorated fighter here, a former It’s Showtime champion looking to stay near the top as he gets near the 15th year of his pro career. But Hron has plenty of big experience too, with career wins over Jahfarr Wilnis and Errol Zimmerman (a long time ago), and his own 15 year career behind him. This will feel a bit tainted because of the late change, but it’s actually a really great fight between two veterans who both need the win.
Rounding out the Glory 41 card is Chenglong Zhang vs. Wilson Sanchez Mendes in a Featherweight fight.
Glory 41 airs live this Saturday, May 20. The show begins at 1:00 p.m. ET on ESPN3, with the Superfight Series airing at 3:30 p.m. ET on Fight Pass. Join Bloody Elbow for live fight coverage.
GLORY 41 SUPERFIGHT SERIES
Fight Pass, Sat. May 20, 3:30 p.m. ET
Rico Verhoeven vs. Ismael Lazaar
FW Title: Robin van Roosmalen vs. Petchpanomrung Kiatmookao
Murthel Groenhart vs. Alan Scheinson
Michael Duut vs. Mourad Bouzidi
Tyjani Beztati vs. Youssef Assouik
Zakaria Zouggary vs. Yetkin Ozkul
GLORY 41 HOLLAND
ESPN3, Sat. May 20, 1:00 p.m. ET
Heavyweight Tournament Final
Hesdy Gerges vs. Chi Lewis-Parry
Chenglong Zhang vs. Wilson Sanches Mendes
Semifinal: D’Angelo Marshall vs. Mohamed Abdallah
Semifinal: Anderson Silva vs. Giannis Stoforidis