Denis Kang Faces Marvin “The Beastman” Eastman as Raw Combat Returns to Calgary
October 25th at the Calgary Corral, two of the most feared middleweight mixed martial arts fighters in the world are set to collide as Raw Combat returns with an epic main event between Canadian sensation Denis Kang (29-10-1) and UFC veteran Marvin “The Beastman” Eastman (15-8-1).
One of the top-ranked 185-pound gladiators in the sport, Kang has spent most of his career fighting overseas where he has captured wins over Brazilian Murilo “Ninja” Rua, Britain’s Mark “The Wizard” Weir and Japanese fighting legend Akihiro Gono. Now coming off back-to-back losses, the 31-year-old who once went on a 22-fight unbeaten streak is looking to get his career back on track with a win over a seasoned opponent.
A veteran of the legendary UFC octagon, hardcore Calgary sports fans will also remember Eastman, 39, from his career with the Calgary Stampeders where he wore number 41 while playing tail-back in the early 90’s. Saturday, October 25th, “The Beastman” will bring his incredible athleticism back to his former home to give Kang a serious challenge in the Raw Combat cage.
“It’s been a long time since I’ve been up there,” says Eastman, who now lives and trains in Las Vegas, Nevada. “It will bring back memories. The people there were great to me. My objective is to finish the fight as fast as possible so it doesn’t go to the judges. He’s a popular guy, a top-5 middleweight and a great opponent but the bottom line is when we get in that cage, I don’t respect anybody.”
Like his opponent, Eastman is also coming off a career-setback loss and will look to make things right again with a dominating performance. According to Kang, a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, the result will be an explosive, entertaining match pitting Eastman’s wrestling and kickboxing skills against Kang’s striking and arsenal of submission holds.
“We’re two athletic guys who like to get out there and swing. It’s going to be a very heated fight,” Kang explains. “There’s going to be a lot of desire by the both of us to win. I’m coming off a couple of losses and he is as well so we’re both going to be really hungry. Neither of us are going to take this fight lightly or take any shortcuts in training. That’s for sure.”
For Raw Combat President Dave Houshiar, the Kang vs. Eastman main event fight marks a triumphant return to the town where his first event “Raw Combat: Ressurection” was a success with fight fans on June 20, 2008.
“It took us about 6 months to get this show off the ground and we’re starting to roll now,” Houshiar says. “Our next show is going to bring down the house with our main event. They’re both at a point in their careers where they have to turn it up a notch to stay on the top level. I think this is going to be a great stand-up war. If it does go to the ground, Marvin is going to have to find a way to deal with Kang’s jiu-jitsu skills. It’s going to be the fight of the night guaranteed.”
The remainder of the fight card for the October 25 Raw Combat event has yet to be announced.
Dave Houshiar had developed a deep appreciation and understanding of the sport. After the final HCF show in March of 2008, he was determined to prove that his days as an MMA promoter were far from over. Recognizing the immense potential that Raw Combat presented, he contacted Feser and the two developed a plan to bring the event back to life.
June 20, 2008 that plan became reality as “Raw Combat: Resurrection” hit the Max Bell Centre in Calgary, Alberta. Presented in association with the Legacy Fighting Championships, the first Raw Combat event in over 10-years filled the stadium and gave fight fans their money’s worth with eleven exciting matches. With veterans of the UFC, Pride, WEC, KOTC and other events on the card, the second Raw Combat event reaped the rewards of the sport the first show helped to create. With mixed martial arts prospering in every corner of the globe, Raw Combat’s second effort was sanctioned by the City Calgary Athletic Commission. In the main event, top-ranked welterweight Dan “The Handler” Hornbuckle defeated Canada’s Nabil “The Thrill” Khatib for the Raw 170-pound title, while the semi-main event saw former UFC middleweight title contender David “The Crow” Loiseau knock out Calgary fighter Andrew Buckland for the five thousand dollar “KO of The Night” award. The undercard was equally stacked, brimming with fighters from Canada, Brazil and the United States.
Now, with their feet beneath them and their hands raised in victory, the promoters of Raw Combat are ready to enter the world of mixed martial arts again. With events planned in both Canada and the United States, and champions already crowned in two weight divisions, the future looks bright for the organization that has already made such an impact on the sport.