2017 Newsmakers: Rico Verhoeven

FIGHT SPORTS looks at some of the biggest newsmakers in 2017 in the world of FIGHT SPORTS from December 26th up until January 1st.

Today, we look at the top Kickboxer, Rico Verhoeven.

Rico continued to be the showcase fighter for GLORY in 2017, battling not only former UFC star Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva, but also seeking redemption against Jamaal Ben Saddik in December. FIGHT SPORTS spoke with Rico prior to his “GLORY: Redemption” fight with Ben Saddik.

Rico Verhoeven told FIGHT SPORTS that the pressure of being the best kickboxer in the world weighed heavy on him when he first faced Ben Saddik, and that pressure caused Verhoeven to get inside his own head and force him to not be as loose as he wanted to be inside the ring.

“Enjoy the moments you spend in the ring… I wasn’t enjoying it, I was stressed out… Now I just enjoy myself.”

That change in mindset is a reason Rico believes he is the best in the world.

“I am doing everything an athlete has to do to be the best version of himself.”

Another difference is that he is no longer just a kickboxer. With his recent work voicing the titular character for a foreign dub of Ferdinand, a brand-new autobiography, and his work in commercials and as a spokesman, he is a brand. But more importantly as well, Rico Verhoeven is a father.

Rico explained to FIGHT SPORTS the balance between being a fighter, a father, a husband, and the face of his sport.

“The thing is, I enjoy doing all of the stuff next to kickboxing, I want to bring this sport to the next level.”
“Working hard for me is easy, because I enjoy everything that I’m doing, its fun stuff.”
“The time you spend at home, make sure it counts.”

– Rico Verhoeven

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