You can call Rico Verhoeven boring and knock on him for not finishing fights, but you can't deride him for winning. And that is what the GLORY champion continues to do.
At GLORY 22 in Lille, France, on Friday afternoon (June 5, 2015) the 26-year-old Dutch kickboxer proved once again why he is the GLORY heavyweight kingpin, defeating Benjamin Adegbuyi by unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 50-45) in a mostly one-sided affair.
The win marked his eighth straight in GLORY competition, and he also became the first GLORY heavyweight champ to defend the belt two consecutive times.
"The Prince of Kickboxing" overcame a slow start to put on a dominant and impressive performance to improve his overall record to 46-10-1, and 9-1 in GLORY.
Verhoeven looked a bit sluggish in the first round as Adegbuyi was snapping him back with a solid jab and landing crisp and clean combinations throughout the first three minutes of action.
But things would dramatically change in the second round.
The champion began to find his rhythm and started to land solid combinations as well as impactful inside low kicks, which stumbled the challenger when they landed.
Check out the power of Verhoeven's leg kicks in this highlight from GLORY:
The champ is looking SLICK at the end of round three, two rounds to go with the belt on the line #GLORY22 on @spike pic.twitter.com/54lIf957BJ— GLORY World Series (@GLORY_WS) June 5, 2015
From the third round up until the fights conclusion, Verhoeven picked up the pace as Adegbuyi began to fade, taking full command of the fight. Verhoeven continued to take the wheels out from under Adegbuyi with inside low kicks, on top of opening up with more flurries of punches. The champ even pulled out knees to the thigh from his arsenal.
"It was ok," Verhoeven told Frank Shamrock afterward. "There is room for improvement--a lot of improvement--but technically it was OK, but could improve a little bit further because he had to get out of the fourth and fifth round. He's a hard guy. He's a tough guy and he showed some heart today so props to him."
For more on GLORY 22, check out the full results and play-by-play right here.