TOKYO, April 21, 2004 -- K-1 will further develop its new MMA Rules division with "ROMANEX" (derived from "Roman" and "Extra" ), a blockbuster fight event set for Saturday May 22 at the Saitama Super Arena. The announcement was made by K-1 Event Producer Sadaharu Tanikawa in a press conference at the Shin Takanawa Prince Hotel in central Tokyo.
Former undisputed heavyweight boxing champion, "Iron" Mike Tyson (50-4 (44 KO's), has signed a contract to participate in his next boxing bout. Slated for July, the fight will mark both Tyson's first ring appearance in over a year as well as his first fight promoted by Fight Entertainment Group (FEG), a subsidiary company of K-1, the world's premiere martial arts fighting sport.
Tyson's opponent for the July bout, as well as an exact date for the fight, is expected to be announced shortly. Las Vegas, New York, and Los Angeles have been mentioned as the three possible sites for the event. Terms of the agreement were not announced.
"Mike is excited that he will be boxing again this summer," said Tyson's representatives. "Mike is already back in the gym preparing for the fight, and he's dedicating himself to delivering a great performance in July. We're confident that FEG will put on an amazing show."
During his last contest on February 22, 2003, Tyson toppled Clifford "The Black Rhino" Etienne just 49 seconds into the first round of their meeting in Memphis, Tennessee's Pyramid Arena.
For some time, K-1 had sought to make Tyson a part of its promotion that is well-known for its Superbowl-like production. Last summer, Tyson signed an agreement which designated K-1 as his exclusive representative in Japan and granted K-1 certain promotional rights with respect to any Tyson boxing matches held in Japan. Less than a year later, K-1 agreed to serve as Tyson's boxing promoter for a boxing match to be held in the U.S.
K-1 is a martial arts fighting sport that derives its name from its inclusion of a wide array of combat disciplines, including Karate, Kung-Fu, and Kickboxing ("K"), and its intent to determine one champion in one ring ("1"). After being staged for the first time in Japan in 1993 under the direction of founder Master Kazuyoshi Ishii, it later evolved into the country's most popular sport and achieved popular culture status there as its athletes turned into larger-than-life celebrities. Last year, K-1 USA, the North American subsidiary
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