K-1 legend, Remy Bonjasky has accepted Gökhan Saki‘s challenge for a potential GLORY showdown via Instagram, in a bizarre series of events that have all unfolded in the aftermath of GLORY Collision: Rico vs Badr.
At the start of the week, Saki had called out Rico Verhoeven for a rematch after initially congratulating him for his TKO win over Badr Hari before swiftly mocking Verhoeven’s decision win over himself, in the 4-man Heavyweight tournament at GLORY 11. That fight has always been dogged in controversy by Saki alleging a ‘fake 8 count’ by the referee which, he’d received when they had previously fought.
“The Rebel” has always argued that he fell accidentally to the canvas and that it wasn’t a knockdown and therefore, didn’t justify the 8 count he received. Rico would not only secure a decision victory against Saki that night but would also go on to win the Heavyweight champion tournament that night too.
There had been no initial reaction by the GLORY Heavyweight champion to Saki’s call out. However, Benjamin Adegbuyi who, now trains with Rico reacted angrily towards what he felt was, Saki’s disrespectful behaviour towards him because he is the legitimate number one Heavyweight contender. Adegbuyi had recently won the 4-man contender tournament at GLORY 35 and as a result, warned Saki that he had should either, “stay in line or go past him” first and foremost, before thinking of a rematch with Verhoeven.
However, Saki it seems, already had his sights set elsewhere if he wasn’t able to goad Verhoeven into a rematch by then calling out Remy Bonjasky shortly afterwards (again via Instagram) which, at first, was a bit of a surprise. Bonjasky, a former investment banker, had retired from professional kickboxing after winning his last fight against Mirko Cro Cop at GLORY 14.
It would seem that Bonjasky has had a complete change of mind regarding his kickboxing retirement from the caption of his ‘Challenge Accepted’ video:
“They ignored me the first time when i won the K1, they were amazed when I won the K1 the second time, and they turned into believers when i won the K1 the third time. I am a 3 Time K1 Heavyweight world champion. #istayready…”
Allegedly, Bonjasky had appeared on Dutch television prior to Rico vs Badr, saying he’d be open to a potential rematch with Badr Hari if the “Golden Boy’ wanted it. The pair had previously clashed in one of the most controversial K-1 World Grand Prix finals in 2008 which, resulted in Badr being disqualified for stomping on Remy’s head, after knocking “The Flying Gentleman” to the canvas.
Saki’s stance on social media would appear to be that he needs the motivation of a big fight in order to return to kickboxing after his two year hiatus which, is pretty much similar to Badr Hari’s attitude about being a ‘prize-fighter’. As well as wanting to become a two weight champion similar to both the UFC‘s Conor McGregor and GLORY Featherweight champion, Robin van Roosmalen.
MMA Plus will bring you more on this as and when things unfold between Saki, Bonjasky; and any potential talks between the pair of them and GLORY..