Verhoeven: “I Did What I Had to Do”
At GLORY: Collision, back on Dec. 10, GLORY heavyweight champion Rico Verhoeven squared off with Badi Hadr in a heavily anticipated main event. Many in the combat sports community, even those who may not be big fans of kickboxing, tuned in to see an exciting bout between the two greats.
And as exciting as their first round was, the bout ended suddenly. A knee from Verhoeven landed on Hadr’s arm, breaking it, and giving Verhoeven an early second round TKO victory.
While many were disappointed with the sudden finish that cut the bout short, Verhoeven said in a recent appearance on The MMA Hour that he has no regrets about how the bout ended.
"I’m happy with the result because I did what I had to do," Verhoeven said. "I came in to demolish him every way possible and we started out with taking out that right hand and it worked so in the end, I’m happy.
"We know and everyone knows his right hand is strong. So part of the game plan was taking out that right hand and it worked even quicker than we thought."
The opening bout saw a heavy-hitting, back-and-forth contest between the two, with Hadr leaving his mark, literally. A few shots from Hadr resulted in Verhoeven receiving a busted up nose.
"I was pressuring him, I was in the middle of the ring. He landed some pretty jabs and I landed some good kicks, so I think it was a close round," Verhoeven said. "People can say whatever they want about the first round. It’s a three-round fight. The fight was over when it was over. He said I wasn’t even going to get out of the first round."
Despite the results going down as a knee from him that broke Hadr’s arm, Verhoeven believes that Hadr’s arm was already broken by the time he delivered the fight-ending blow.
"It’s not that knee that in the end broke the arm. I think it already happened in the first round," he said. "It was one of the middle kicks. So I was happy just even in that second round, because I didn’t know he broke his arm, but I felt the middle kicks were landing and I think just after a minute or something in the second round he thought this was something that he thought, ‘Hey, time to get out. This can only end badder than it is already.’"