Tag Archives: knuckle

Ex-UFC beauty joins Russian star in Bare Knuckle FC move

Ex-UFC beauty Rachael Ostovich joins Russian star Ekaterina Makarova in Bare Knuckle FC move – setting up Paige VanZant rematch.

UFC fighters and social media sensations Paige VanZant and Rachael Ostovich could fight each other again in a bare knuckle match after Ostovich followed her old rival into the sport, joined by Russian brawler Ekaterina Makarova.

MMA pin-up Ostovich is set to fight for the first time since November, when she lost her third straight UFC scrap, after becoming the newest signing for the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC), which made VanZant its best-known star when she joined the promotion last year.

Ostovich joined BKFC shortly after it also signed Ekaterina Makarova, an undefeated Moscow fighter who previously appeared for Russian promotion Top Dog and is expected to make her debut in June.

The development means that beauty brand owner Ostovich could rematch VanZant, the former rival she lost to in January 2019, which turned out to be VanZant’s final win in the UFC.

That was also VanZant’s most recent MMA victory following her points defeat to ex-boxer Britain Hart on her BKFC debut in February, although the newcomer and the promotion appeared keen to continue their apparently productive early relationship despite her unsuccessful start.

Signing the trio of popular female fighters appears to be a marketing dream for BKFC and a way of appealing to new audiences, with VanZant having more than 2.8 million followers on Instagram, where Ostovich boasts more than 743,000 admirers.

Featherweight Makarova, 24, does not quite have the pair’s stratospheric profile at this stage but is clearly a rising star and has signed an “exclusive promotional deal”.

“We are keeping a close eye on a lot of talent developing in Russia and looking to bring the best to BKFC,” said Dave Feldman, the promotion president, announcing the move.

“Ekaterina is just that: one very tough lady who has tremendous ability and is as strong and skilled as they come. This marks our second signing from Russia in as many months as she joins Evgeniy Kurdanov who joined our team in March.”

When male light-heavyweight Kurdanov signed up, Feldman pointed to the “huge” appeal held by BKFC in Russia, which the promotion hopes to tap into.

Another experienced fighter to have joined BKFC in the past week is Pearl Gonzalez, the 34-year-old former UFC and Invicta FC strawweight.

“I made the biggest sacrifice of my life, packed up everything and moved to Brooklyn, New York permanently to train with the greatest female boxer in the world,” revealed Gonzalez to her vast Instagram following of almost 240,000, explaining that she was joining a training facility part-run by legendary female boxer Cindy Serrano.

“I promise to dedicate my life to becoming the next BKFC world champ and couldn’t be happier to start this new chapter in my life.”

Also on rt.com ‘This is the dawn of a new sport’: First Russian Bare Knuckle FC star Evgeny Kurdanov talks MMA future after transformative year

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This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

From bare knuckle to baring all: Fight queen VanZant showcases sizzling curves in promo video for OnlyFans-style website (PHOTOS)

Ex-UFC stunner and bare knuckle newcomer Paige VanZant has left little to the imagination in a brand new video she has posted to her 2.8 million Instagram fans showcasing the steamy subscriber-only content on her new fan site.

The 27-year-old, who was defeated on her Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC) debut by Britain Hart last month, has eschewed the traditional route taken by many of her former female colleagues in the UFC who have launched OnlyFans pages in a bid to bolster their earnings.

Instead, the American has launched her own subscription-based website in which fans are treated to daily steamy snaps of the combat queen. 

The website, which costs $ 9.99 per month to sign up to, has led to a surge in interest in the fighter, whose Instagram page regularly features skimpy pictures of the former UFC star in various states of undress.

But if any of her fans are looking for something just a bit more revealing, it comes at a price.

And in case some of VanZant’s supporters weren’t exactly sure what they were signing up to, a video posted to her Instagram revealed all – well, most of it.

Thank you all so much for you support on my fan site,” wrote VanZant alongside the clip.

I am having so much fun chatting with you all and sharing sexy content with my sexy fans. I won’t go into detail with what all goes on – but if you’re curious, click that link in my bio and find out for yourself.”

The brief video shows the sultry star in heels and a skimpy gold dress before she poses by a pool and in a revealing pink bikini. It also shows VanZant dancing, shadow-boxing and wearing a crown.

VanZant is one of several examples of fighters who have succeeded in turning ring fame into a successful modeling career.

She has previously appeared in the pages of the famous Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition – and has said that she makes more income posting snaps to social media than she made during her six-year tenure with the UFC.

She later described her Sports Illustrated cameo as “the pinnacle of my modeling career thus far.”

VanZant’s extracurricular income comes as the fight league she represents, Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship, announced plans to become the first major combat sports promotion to launch a pension plan for their fighters.

Our fighters are the most important asset of the company,” said BKFC chief David Feldman. “We want to ensure that they are compensated not only on the night of the fight but also looked after in retirement. For each BKFC fight, money will be placed in a pension account for them to draw on upon retirement.

BKFC is the hottest, fastest growing and most exciting sport in the world and we want to ensure that our fighters are taken care of in every possible way.”

VanZant’s burgeoning modeling empire, though, suggests that she most likely won’t have to lean too heavily on the bare knuckle pension fund so long as her legions of fans are content in sending her 10 bucks every month. 
Also on rt.com Bare Knuckle FC newcomer Paige VanZant squirts cream on herself while bigging up bow-out of fellow brawler and ex-UFC star Garcia

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'After bare knuckle fights, boxing doesn't bother me!' Russia's best-looking BKB boxer – Olga Gurova (VIDEO)

Russian bare-knuckle boxing may conjure images of bare-chested burly men in the woods swinging sweat-stained fists into each other’s faces to render one another unconscious. Olga Gurova is as far from that stereotype as can be.

Wearing a trendy white shirt covering her slender, five feet, four-inches figure and sporting a short, blonde ponytail, the one thing in Gurova’s petite appearance betraying her penchant for pugilism is her nose.

Aside from that one feature, slightly bent out of shape by shipping bare-fisted blows, Gurova resembles any other 23-year-old. But then, not every 23-year-old girl craves the adrenaline of bare knuckle boxing matches.

A fighter since her father took her to a boxing gym at the age of eight, Gurova slugged away to reach the level of master of sport – a prestigious title stemming from the old Soviet ranking system – and is now navigating the pro game.

Before her third professional fight – an eight-round bout against experienced Elena Saveleva on the undercard of Artur Beterbiev light heavyweight title defence in Moscow, Gurova spoke to RT Sport about bare knuckle fighting, pleasing her parents, and why boxing doesn’t bother her.

You have already a bunch of flights outside of professional boxing, give us a little bit more detail about your ‘second career’.

Apart from my pro fights, I had a lot of fights in my amateur career. Aside from that, I have had a fight in bare knuckle boxing in the Top Dog organization and not long ago, on March 6, in a different organization, ‘Punch Club’, not bareknuckle but in MMA gloves. After a bare knuckle fight, a fight in boxing doesn’t worry me that much because after all you have more defence and boxing is more natural to me than a bare knuckle fight.

Why do you do such unforgiving sports?

I just want to test myself, to battle with myself to overcome my fears first and foremost. As for boxing, my dad got me into that. That’s why I box now. My father first brought me to the boxing gym and was my first trainer. 

What does he think about the fact you fight bare knuckle? It’s not really the done thing for girls to be involved in a sport like that.

In general the majority of fans are against seeing girls fight bare knuckle and my parents are no exception! They are against it. So… I’m going against my parents.

That’s no surprise! Looking at you. You are 23, correct? You’re good-looking, trendy and smart. Why aren’t you looking for easier routes? I’m guessing you have a bunch of other options to earn good money. Why are you boxing and fighting bare knuckle?

I’ve been doing sport since the age of 8. In combat sports. I’ve already many times wanted to finish my sporting career. But it’s not letting me go because at the end of the day I want to fulfil my potential.

Because I have already had a lot of injuries, that became the reason I couldn’t fight. Now I’ve had operations on my knees and I want to reach the top. I don’t train for the sake of it and have dedicated the best part of my life to this.

Exactly what do you want to achieve in professional boxing?

To become a champion of course! In every organization.

We did an interview not long ago with Joey Beltran, the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship heavyweight world champion. He said that the emotions that he experiences during a bare knuckle fight is unrivalled. What exactly do you experience during a fight?

Of course during a fight the adrenaline is pumping and when you feel these emotions during a fight a normal life is difficult. It’s difficult to live without those feelings.

So if you don’t train and you start living a quiet life you constantly want that extreme, you constantly want to feel those feelings and emotions that you feel in the ring and in the fight, those heightened senses.

Artur Beterbiev said not long ago that he wants to try his luck in MMA. Some say in MMA gloves he would ‘murder’ an opponent. It was said a little bit tongue in cheek. If he switched to bare knuckle fighting, what would you expect from him?

Bare knuckle boxing is a different beast altogether. It’s not boxing and it’s not a fight. There should be very heightened senses and a very strong character. People who go for a bare knuckle fight are very strong people first and foremost. Not everyone can fight bare knuckle.

It’s one thing to fight on the street and there you can end things with one punch. Here we have very strict rules, a number of rounds, time, set rules, only boxing, no kicks or wrestling or whatever. It’s a little bit not boxing and not MMA it’s a sport in its own right. For which I believe you have to have a big set of balls to go and fight there.

Especially not just to fight in one fight but to win some titles. Because they also have titles in bare knuckle.

And if you won a belt, would it please your parents?

Now? Of course. My parents first and foremost want for me to reach the top in my pro boxing career. Initially I had a goal in boxing. Naturally they are big boxing fans.

What’s best in your opinion: boxing or bare knuckle?

Boxing is the original. I think that boxing is better than anything! It’s just the original classic combat sport. 

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Bare Knuckle FC newcomer Paige VanZant squirts cream on herself while bigging up bow-out of fellow brawler and ex-UFC star Garcia

Ex-UFC star Paige VanZant has teased her legion of followers on Instagram with a racy story involving her squirting cream on herself, telling her fans that she was looking forward to a bare-knuckle card featuring Leonard Garcia.

The former UFC starlet-turned-Bare Knuckle scrapper sent followers on Instagram wild before playing her part in advertising the latest event by her new promotion, the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship.

After pushing the BKFC 16 card, she then shared a post from BKFC with a line that several of its stars had used during the day, echoing: “Bloody Good Main Event”.

The headline fight saw Leonard Garcia, who is also formerly of the UFC, go all the way in what many suspect was his final fight with a majority decision (50-45, 50-45, 49-46) over Joe Elmore.

“I hope Leonard Garcia has a happy retirement,” wrote one fan, watching the questionably respectful end to his fight.

“Hell of a career, but if anyone walked off midway through my ‘both us us kneel down and respect thing’, I’m dropkicking them in the back of the knees when I get up.”

At 41, Garcia said he was yet to make his mind up after a fight in which Elmore fought gamely on despite suffering a bad-looking first-round cut that left him bleeding profusely from his head.

“I’ve still got a lot left in the tank,” said the veteran. “I’m still a legend, I still did everything I said I was going to do.

“Fighting a guy like Joe was something else. I learned a lot about myself and I learned a lot about Joe.

“I’ve got all the respect in the world for him and I don’t take anything away from him.

“I’ve got an important decision to make and it’s a hard one. My deal with God was to be the number one guy when I left.

“That’s why I took the fight with Joe Elmore. I wanted to prove to the world I was the number one fighter at 165 when I retired.”

VanZant lost to Britain Hart by decision on her debut with the promotion last month, but has vowed to continue her fighting career and spoken of her devotion to MMA.
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‘This is the dawn of a new sport’: First Russian Bare Knuckle FC star Evgeny Kurdanov talks MMA future after transformative year

After becoming Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship’s (BKFC) first Russian signing, rising star Evgeny Kurdanov has moved to the US and admitted that he has been stunned by the last year of his early MMA career.

A part-time philosopher who often invites his vast Instagram following to send him the proverbs and phrases he adores, Kurdanov is driven by a desire not to return home to Russia without more victories to his name.

Announcing his signing at the start of the month, BKFC certainly believe Kurdanov will become a star. David Feldman, the promotion’s president, has described himself as “very excited” about the “amazing prospect” who had a perfect four-fight record with Hardcore BK Russia.

“I, just like you, could not believe it that everything would gain momentum – for example, the fact that I will be preparing to move to the states and preparing to speak with bare fists there,” Kurdanov told his audience of more than 159,000 on Instagram, where he has separate accounts for his fighting career and his deeply-considered thoughts on life.

“Now, more and more often, we hear and see fighters on smartphones and TVs on screens fighting with bare fists.

“This is the dawn of a new sport that will take hold in our minds. We also know this story from MMA, a sport that was considered savage 25 years ago.

“In this life, a lot of interesting and unpredictable things can happen and life can change dramatically.

“I – and, indeed, no one – could have predicted that in a year I would pick up such a move.”

With his unmistakable beard and frequent use of a hat, Kurdanov’s coach, Levi, is the man he credits with keeping faith in him when he decided to pursue breaking into the bare knuckle bigtime last year.

There was another surprise and more inspiration when he recently met legendary Russian boxer Kostya Tszyu, an “uncle” who he says gave him “valuable advice” on training.

“I never thought that we would meet, although over the past year everything has changed in my life,” confessed Kurdanov.

“Training, for me, is something more than just a sport. This is my meditation. Sport gave me the opportunity to go out… so I train as if my life depended on it.

“The training process is always very exciting. You learn something new. You get experience and plots.

“You get tired physically and mentally. Most importantly, you enjoy the process.”

Although Kurdanov expects to make his debut for BKFC in the US, Feldman anticipates promoting more events in Russia, where he hopes to be able to capitalize on the appetite for the sport.

“The Russian market for BKFC continues to expand exponentially with each of our shows,” he announced at the time of Kurdanov’s signing, adding that fans in Russia and eastern Europe are watching events in “huge” numbers.
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NBA giant Shaquille O’Neal ends up in ambulance after bare knuckle fan is slammed backwards over table on wrestling return (VIDEO)

Shaquille O’Neal was stretched out into an ambulance after being sent flying out of the ring in an explosive first wrestling match with AEW Dynamite, culminating in the former NBA star being slammed violently through a table.

The basketball Hall of Famer from his time with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat teamed up with Jade Cargill to fight Cody Rhodes and Red Velvet at Daily’s Place in Jacksonville, Florida.

I’m not a professional wrestler but I’ve been in a match before,” Shaq said before the match. “I’ve got a lot of moves in my arsenal. When you step inside somebody’s world, you have to stick to what you’re masterful at.

I’m not acrobatic. I’m not going to be jumping off the ropes. I’m coming with the power game. When I get hands on him, I’m going to display this power.”

Shaq’s team earned a well-deserved win but their performance will be more remembered for the episode which took place at the end of the match.

The 48-year-old, who has been widely reported to be investing in the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship that he describes as “the future of fighting”, was standing next to the ring apron when Rhodes vaulted over the ropes to deliver a decisive strike.

That sent the towering basketball icon flying and both athletes crashing over two tables, leaving 7ft1in O’Neal prone on his back on the floor.

Following the crash, O’Neal was seen stretched out in an ambulance. He was forced to bend his knees to fit into the car.

When wrestling commentator Tony Schiavone came to check on him later, Shaq was said to have mysteriously gone missing from the vehicle.
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