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Melvin Manhoef

Melvin Manhoef

Melvin Manhoef is a Surinamese-Dutch professional
kickboxer and mixed martial artist. In kickboxing, he is the former It’s Showtime 85MAX World
Champion, and in MMA he was the Cage Rage World Light Heavyweight Champion. In mixed
martial arts, he is currently competing in Bellator’s Middleweight division and has also
formerly competed for Strikeforce, DREAM, RINGS, It’s Showtime, K-1, ONE FC, and KSW.
As of 5 June 2014, Manhoef is ranked the #8 Middleweight in the world by GLORY. Background
Manhoef was born in Paramaribo, Suriname. When he was three years old his family moved
to Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Manhoef was involved in soccer during his youth, and was
introduced to Muay Thai by his younger brother, Moreno. He started at Rock gym Zaandam but
soon joined Choku Gym. Career
At the age of 18, Manhoef had his first fight, which he won by decision. He made his comeback
in September 2001, as part of Chakuriki Gym. In 2004, Manhoef entered the Cage Rage promotion
in London. He became the British Cage Rage Light Heavyweight Champion by beating Fabio
Piamonte at Cage Rage 13. He defended his title for almost two years, until entering
the K-1’s MMA affiliate promotion Hero’s in 2006. He won his first fight at Hero’s 4 against
Shungo Oyama by technical knockout in first round.
Melvin has switched his main focus to MMA over the past couple of years. He lost to
Dong-sik Yoon by submission armbar in K-1 Dynamite!! USA, he defeated Bernard Ackah
at K-1 Hero’s Middleweight Tournament Opening Round, and also got a TKO win against Fábio
Silva, a Chute Boxe fighter, by TKO in K-1 Hero’s Middleweight GP Final. At Dream 4 Melvin
fought Kazushi Sakuraba. Manhoef and Sakuraba circled the ring for the first minute of the
fight, before Manhoef dropped Sakuraba with a hard right head kick and finished him via
TKO at 90 seconds into Round 1. With the win, Melvin had advanced to the semifinal round
of the DREAM Middleweight Grand Prix. At Dream 6 Melvin fought Gegard Mousasi as the tournament
dictated. Wary of Manhoef’s standup, Mousasi quickly took the fight to the ground despite
attempts to shrug him with a sprawl. Mousasi took Manhoef’s back until scrambling into
a triangle choke at 1:28 of the first round, surviving a powerful slam attempt from Manhoef
while he had the submission secured. Mousasi went on to win the DREAM Middleweight Grand
Prix. At Dynamite!! 2008 Melvin fought Mark Hunt
as a late alternate at heavyweight, despite usually functioning at two weight classes
below his opponent. Regardless of the size disadvantage, he knocked down the iron-jawed
Samoan in 18 seconds and followed with punches as he was postured over Hunt, until the referee
stopped the fight. It was the first time Hunt was finished by knockout in his MMA career.
He fought former WEC Middleweight Champion Paulo Filho on 20 July 2009 at Dream 10. Despite
early success on the feet with his striking offensive, Manhoef was taken down and submitted
via armbar in the first round. Manhoef signed a multi-year fight contract
with Strikeforce. Manhoef made his debut for the organization against Robbie Lawler on
30 January 2010 at Strikeforce: Miami. Despite a strong start with heavy leg kicks and punches,
he was knocked out at 3:33 in the first round. Manhoef fought Tatsuya Mizuno at Dream 15
and lost by submission. Manhoef returned to the United States in March
2011, facing Tim Kennedy at Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson. He lost the fight via submission
in the first round. On 31 January 2012 it was announced that Manhoef
had signed with ONE Fighting Championship and would be fighting Renato Sobral in the
main event at ONE Fighting Championship 3. However, Sobral pulled out of the fight and
Manhoef faced Yoshiyuki Nakanishi. The fight ended in a No Contest due to an accidental
injury to Manhoef’s leg in round 1. Manhoef scored a knockout victory on 6 October 2012
against Ryo Kawamura, followed by a quick knockout of Dennis Kang on 31 December 2012.
Melvin is now on a three fight win streak in mma and has gone 4-0 on New Year’s Eve.
Recently Manhoef was training with the famous Black House in the United States. He helped
his teammate Lyoto Machida train for a fight with Dan Henderson. Manhoef openly hopes to
sign with the UFC after visiting UFC 156 in Las Vegas and meeting with Dana White.
In 2013 Manhoef fought UFC veteran Brock Larson at ONE FC on 5 April. After controlling the
standup and Larson literally running away from him, Manhoef was repeatedly taken down
in the last two rounds and Larson won via unanimous decision. He lost to Mamed Khalidov
at KSW23 on 8 June 2013. He lost to Zabit Samedov by unanimous decision
in the semi-finals of the 93 kg/205 lb kickboxing tournament at Legend 2: Invasion in Moscow,
Russia on 9 November 2013. Manhoef faced Evangelista Santos in a much-anticipated
rematch for the Gringo Super Fight Welterweight title on 27 April. The fight was Melvin’s
first at 170 lbs. Manhoef won the bout via TKO, early in the first round.
It was announced during the Glory 15: Istanbul broadcast that Manhoef would be one of eight
fighters competing in the Glory 17: Los Angeles – Last Man Standing middleweight tournament
in Inglewood, California, United States on June 21, 2014. He lost to Filip Verlinden
in the quarter-finals, suffering a head kick knockdown in round one before losing a majority
decision. On 21 July 2014, Bellator MMA announced that
they signed Paul Daley along with Melvin Manhoef. Manhoef made his Bellator debut against Doug
Marshall, in a middleweight bout, at Bellator 125 on 19 September 2014. He won the fight
via knockout in the first round. Manhoef faced Glory veteran Joe Schilling
on 15 November 2014 at Bellator 131. After a dominant first round that saw Manhoef drop
Schilling twice, he lost the fight in the second round due to a knockout.
Manhoef is expected to fight Michał Materla at KSW 30 at a future date in 2015.
Championships and Accomplishments Kickboxing
It’s Showtime It’s Showtime 85 KG MAX World champion Mixed Martial Arts
Cage Rage Cage Rage Light Heavyweight Champion DREAM
DREAM Middleweight Grand Prix Semi Finalist K-1 Hero’s
2006 Hero’s Light Heavyweight finalist Sherdog
2012 All-Violence First Team Gringo Super Fight
2014 GSF Welterweight Champion Kickboxing record
Mixed martial arts record See also
List of K-1 events List of K-1 champions
List of It’s Showtime champions List of male kickboxers
List of male mixed martial artists References External links
Official website of Melvin Manhoef Mike’s Gym official site
Professional MMA record for Melvin Manhoef from Sherdog
Profile at K-1

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