UFC 2 veteran’s Judo/Sambo practitioner vs. Muay Thai
Before the UFC and MMA came along, legitimate style vs style matches were somewhat rare and often had goofy rules, yet were still quite interesting and now important moments in MMA history.
In this cool style vs style fight from all the way back in 1988, we see a Judo and Sambo practitioner named Freek Hamaker, who would go on to fight at UFC 2, take on Muay Thai fighter, Charlie Lieveld.
As soon as the fight begins, you can tell right away that these type of mixed-rules bouts were still very much in their infancy as when the grappler, Hamaker, takes down the Thai fighter and puts him in a rear-naked choke, they are separated and the action resumes.
Another important factor is that the Muay Thai fighter is wearing regular boxing gloves which makes him an easy mark for a grappler, which was probably unbeknownst to him at the time.
This fight is almost reminiscent of Art ‘One Glove’ Jimmerson’s appearance at UFC 1 that saw him famously wear one boxing glove versus Royce Gracie to protect his jab hand, yet, likewise probably unbeknownst to him at the time, makes that hand useless in grappling exchanges.
We see in the video below after the fight seemingly erroneously resumes following the RNC, that the Muay Thai fighter has some success with leg kicks but as soon as Hamaker grabs ahold of him, he essentially has his way with him.
This is pretty much the classic striker vs grappler matchup in its purest form. Watch the video below to see how it finally ends.
As previously stated, Freek Hamaker would go on to fight in UFC 2 where he defeated Thaddeus Luster via TKO (corner stoppage). That would be the only official MMA fight on his record as this kind of bout here in this video wasn’t quite ‘MMA’ yet.