Former welterweight champion Nieky ‘The Natural’ Holzken
holds the records for the highest amount of successful defenses of the GLORY welterweight championship and the highest amount of wins in GLORY welterweight title fights.
As such, he’s already in the GLORY record books and a certainty for a future Hall of Fame spot. But he’s not done yet; Holzken intends to add more successful welterweight title fights to his record.
Holzken was 11-0 in GLORY before running into Cedric Doumbe at GLORY: COLLISION last December and losing his belt by way of split-decision. A rematch six months later ended the same way, putting him at 11-2 in the organization and riding back-to-back losses for the first time since 2008.
He will return to the ring later this month, at GLORY 45 AMSTERDAM on Saturday, September 30, looking for an emphatic win which will put those losses behind him and place him back in the race for the division’s #1 spot.
Standing opposite him will be newcomer Alim ‘The Professor’ Nabiyev, a rising talent of the welterweight scene who has been on GLORY’s radar for some time and now gets his shot. He replaces Yoann Kongolo, who was forced to pull out late last month.
Nabiyev, who has won IFMA, WMF and WMC world titles, was born in Azerbaijan but trains and fights out of Russia, where he is based. He competes under both Muay Thai and kickboxing rules and his record includes wins over GLORY veterans Yohan Lidon, Chad Sugden and Jamie Bates.
At just 22 years old he is one of the younger fighters in the GLORY welterweight division but has already amassed considerable experience - thought not as much as Holzken, 33, who has more than 100 kickboxing bouts to his name.
There is no doubt that Holzken represents the toughest test of Nabiyev’s career to date and Holzken will be surely be the favorite on fight night.
But the history of fight sports is full of newer, younger fighters making their name in an instant with a win over an established name - and that’s what Nabiyev thinks he can do in Amsterdam.
GLORY 45 Amsterdam is set to air live on ESPN3 on Saturday, September 30th, 2017 at 3:30pm Eastern time (ET) and replay on ESPN2 on Sunday, October 1st, 2017 at 11pm ET.