Tyrone Spong Ready to “Show Off” MMA Game in Upcoming Debut, Says GLORY Offered Him Better Deal Than Any Other Kickboxing Promotion
By Kelsey Mowatt
While it remains to be seen what kind of impact the newly created World Series of Fighting will have on MMA, to the upstart promotion’s credit, it’s acquired the services of one of the world’s top kickboxers in Tyrone Spong. While some mainstream MMA fans may not be familiar with the accomplishments of the decorated striker, for those that know Spong, his transition into MMA is an intriguing event.
“I’ll be fighting at 205 and of course I’m always excited when I have a fight scheduled up,” said the 27 year-old Spong, who is expected to compete at the WSOF’s upcoming November 3rd card in Las Vegas. “This being my first MMA fight and that makes me more enthusiastic to show off what I’ve been training for for a long time now. I’m looking forward to that.”
The WSOF has quickly garnered attention for signing established fighter like Miguel Torres and Josh Burkman, as well as its deal with the NBC Sports Network to broadcast its first event. For an established fighter like Spong, who has yet to compete in MMA, the promotion was a good fit.
“Honestly, right now, there’s no real competition for the UFC,” Spong told Full Contact Fighter. “There the biggest organization worldwide, so for World Series, let’s see how it goes. If they have the financial status to back everything up, and they can work their plans out, of course they will do good. I know some people in the organization and they’re very positive, and I trust them. Let’s see what happens.”
If Spong’s kickboxing resume wasn’t reason enough to keep a close eye on his MMA debut, the fact that he’s been training with the renowned Blackzilians team in Florida, makes it that much more interesting.
“I’ve been training with the likes of Rashad Evans, Anthony Johnson, “JZ” Cavalcante, Jorge Santiago, Danillo Villefort, Yuri Villefort, Melvin Guillard, Michael Johnson, Alistair Overeem, so you can see these guys are no small names in the MMA world,” said Spong, who has not had an opponent confirmed yet for his upcoming debut. “Of course it’s been to my benefit for my MMA game.”
“We have a great team,” Spong added. “You’re going to hear a lot of noise about this camp. Everything is going to go ahead, and we’re going to produce a lot of world class fighters and champions. We’ve got everything here.”
While Spong’s immediate attention is on his upcoming MMA debut, similar to his teammate Alistair Overeem in recent years, the Dutch fighter will continue to compete in kickboxing. In August, the European based GLORY promotion announced that it had signed Spong to a multi-fight deal, and that the 68-6-1 fighter will compete at an event in December.
“It’s a big organization, I know the people behind it, and when it’s said and done it’s about the numbers,” said Spong, while discussing why he decided to sign with the growing promotion. “I’m a prize fighter and I need to provide for my family and loved ones, and to be comfortable in life, we need to get paid good. Their numbers were better than the other organizations like K-1, or whoever wanted to sign me.”
“I believe that if everything goes like they’ve planned out, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with,” Spong furthered. “I think they’re already the biggest striking organization. They have a great group of fighters that they’ve signed and they also have the financial status to back their plans.”
In addition to Spong, the GLORY roster features a roster loaded with a combination of all-time greats and emerging superstars in the world of stand-up fighting, including Peter Aerts, Semmy Schilt, Gokhan Saki, Remy Bonjasky, Jerome LeBanner, Errol Zimmerman among others. Together, Aerts, Schilt and Bonjasky boast 10 World Grand Prix championships in the old K-1 series.
“I would like a challenge,” said Spong, when asked who he’s interested in fighting next under the GLORY banner. “I would like somebody like Semmy Schilt. Just because he’s a challenge. He’s a giant, he’s huge, and probably weighs like 280…I’m a crazy guy; I like fighting, so whoever they give me.”