THE MATCH 2023 Rumors Might Prove True, K-1 & RISE Have Announced a Joint Press Conference for Friday

Feb 09, 2023
The sold-out Tokyo Dome. Photo: THE MATCH 2022 / Sachiko Hotaka
Japan's two leading promotions are set to team up again after last year's 'THE MATCH' success.

K-1 and RISE have announced a joint press conference for Friday at 2 PM, broadcast live on ABEMA. K-1 producer Takumi Nakamura, RISE CEO Takashi Ito, and several top fighters are set to appear on stage at the press conference. 

The two organizations were involved in the co-promotion of last year's highly successful pay-per-view event 'THE MATCH 2022', headlined by Tenshin Nasukawa against Takeru. However, since the event, Tenshin Nasukawa has retired from professional kickboxing and a number of K-1's more popular fighters announced their departure from the organization, leaving the Japanese kickboxing scene in an uncertain position. 

It makes sense for the two promotions to once again band together, trying to gather the public's interest with high-stakes champion against champions bouts.

Rumors have already swirled around on social media for the last few weeks, fueled mainly by vague posts from fighters involved in THE MATCH. 

Both promotions have already booked flagship events in march, featuring several of their champions, suggesting that if there's a major cross-over event, it will be held later in the year. However, that's just one possibility and a partnership could play out in a different way.