Badr Hari vs Rico Verrhovean is a tale of one and arguably the best larger weight kick boxer of all time. Rico is the new age of heavily conditioned technical proficient boxer and highly skilled technical kicker not so much of the blood and guts aggression based complete old way of kickboxing where power ruled all and fighting like Dekkers was all anyone strives for. Granted that’s not a knock and this is just a refresher or big picture grab for the people in America who have no clue why all the fight fans and major heads of pop culture fighting culture like Joe Rogan Jack Slack and the good folks at mma fighting, vicelands Fightland, the UG (rep that underground), and countless you-tube analyst like my BIG HOMIE BRENDAN DORMAN (check his video here). The reason for the extraordinary draw to this bout is simple Badr is for all purposes kickboxing in the golden age of combat sports. I will explain further below but it needs to be understood that back in the early 2000s nothing was crackin off like K1 was not even Pride. The level was so far ahead technically than anything being broadcast’d outside of say Thailands 115 to 145 lb Lumpenne Tornaments. So just grasp that real quick.
Now this is very important to understand as well Badr Hari is not some poster boy or figure head he was the King Emperor and Pharaoh of K1 his KO ratio and count is Thai like he KO’D the greats Peter Aerts, Ray Sefo TKO, Sammy Sheilts, Errol Zimmerman, The Reem and I mean Super Saiyan Reem, Peter Graham, Anderson Silva the kickboxers, that crushed organs and bones, he beat my idol Gohkan Saki (wait, Gohkan had a broken arm and other stuff, trying to see it again), and the Reem and countless others, he spinning heel kicked KO’D Leko after getting KO’D with the same kick by Leko twice TWICE. He’s a terror in the ring and everyone knows what Badrs deal is from the moment the contract signed your destruction is all that hes focused on and with aggression and anger usually comes an easy target or rather a very predictable fighter, that couldn’t be less true with Badr. The equivalent or closest comparison is to a Khabib character, we all see the aggression but his technique is pure and true. Badr has always been that way coming out of Mikes Gym his whole career pure DUTCH KICKBOXING is his world and everything he throws is correct unlike a Mighty Mouse he throws with bad intentions not to gauge or set something up his jab has the same message as a power cross there is no distinguishing between the movements. Just to get an understanding of his technique go watch him on pads and the watch any of his fights hes not a training model what you see in flawless movements on pads is what you see in fight film but more agro of course, did I mention he fights with as much anger as Frankie Edgar has heart. Moving on to another important piece of the bout is Badr is jacked now, how that happened is whatever we know hes been training for close to 6 months and when you power lift and eat massive meals you will get massive and hes constantly on the pads and bags or sparring (god bless his training partners their doing GODS work). So why is the nostalgia for Badr so incredible its partly because of his in the ring accomplishments, that’s maybe 40 percent the other 60 is his Lee Murray like exploits outside the ring whether he’s not taking any mess deemed disrespectful from some hotel desk worker and he slaps them across the face of beats the hell out of a guy at a club. Now I don’t condone the later but then again I’m a 5’4 semi retired fighter and Badrs like a 6’5 heavyweight kick-boxer, he’s what Connor acts like personified actually punching people out at weigh ins or deciding lately he doesn’t want to be apart of any face offs. All your cultural bad boy mma fighters pull heavily from Badr in my eyes. The only guys you can compare his bravado to are Lee or the Diaz Brothers . F U pay me has never fit a fighter like it has Badr. Now the history run down from a technical stand point is below for Badr and Rico.
Okay so what does each guy do well starting off Badrs a legend for his straight shot putting it across the chin from a frame up think the Mayweather forearm (which is legal you dummies) or the straight 2 to the belly button that drains guys faster than a beautiful women. Now what this leads to, isn’t some body snatcher mythos but to open up the real finishers in Badrs pocket the lead and rear high kicks, leg kicks, and classic dutch movements. All of his shots are correct with inhuman anger exaggeration maybe do any of us care not at all, if you want to have a visual of Badr and what he does so well think Nieky Holzken but lanky and tall then add Ramon Dekkers forward only mindset but for real with the Tyson ANGER or FRUSTRATION and oh and his spinning side kick and heel kick post Leako of course. Boom there you go good night Irene and there another drop from the K1 era.
Now for Rico inside leg kick from the lead that morphs into a reverse and classic “Dutchie” think Aldo K Flow.
Plus his boxing is much more developed from sparring with Tyson Fury look at Diaz thing 1 and 2 sparring with Ward Sanchez etc. Now his booming shots are the high lead head kick which isn’t crazy spectacular when discussing heavyweight kick-boxers but his speed and delivery is similar to a smaller guy he head kicks with a crispness of a small guy like myself or rather what I strive for not Saenchai level but for a heavyweight he maybe faster then some middleweights. Again that’s just a set up the BOOMER is not the high 9 its the 1 1 2 classic boxing combo he throws right after I mean right after that high 9 not a pause to gain some wind post dutchie that sets the ground work to the 9 but rrrriiiggghhhhttttt after he drops a crispy 1 1 2 off the 11 he might hand trap if the gloves are still up post kick a when he peels drops all of that 6 whatever 220 plus pounds of super conditioned dutchie muscle onto someones chin.
Now the real move of his is just like Mighty Mouse no stop cardio for a heavyweight think what Prime Cain was said to have but is subjective because a lot of wrestling took place where he was on top just riding but whatever game recognize game and Rico’s looking real familiar, dudes got legs which will make KOing him very hard just catching him speed a technique wise plus the added chin power he may have which is a theory of the cardio talk. That’s Rico re imagined basics with a tank every coach or developer of martial movements has prayed for.
So take some time and go deeper and watch some K1 clips to familiarize yourself with the 2000 era Badr that shook up kickboxing and created a legendary following greater than Conor or whomever he is the Don Da Da of the bad boy who is actually a BAD BOY and honestly hes mellowed out and usually when that happens the best performances tend to follow think Conor Nate 2 or a Money May post Castillo I in 2002. Now Badr has been iced before and age matters with chins but so do supplements (cough cough I love kickboxing). That’s it that’s all thank you all for reading.