KNOCK OUT was born in 2016 in cooperation with Bushiroad who host New Japan Pro-Wrestling, and Riki Onodera – legendary kickboxing champion.
Japan, a birthplace of kickboxing, is gathering the champions of multiple organizations and the stage is set for fierce fighting to see who is the strongest.
The final round of KNOCK OUT's first Asian Tournament was held, and this is also recognized as a championship bout. World-class Muaythai champion Yodlekphet won against Chang Hyung Lee, winning the tournament and defending his LightWeight title.
And Initially, Issei Ishii was scheduled to fight against Yoshiho Tane as a Fly Weight championship bout. But due to the Tane's failure in losing weight, Ishii took an exhibition bout with Nadaka Yoshinari, who is the most successful Japanese Muaythai fighter.
On December 5, 2016, KNOCK OUT launched, showcasing current top fighters such as Yosuke Morii and Eisaku Ogasawara. This event featured Tenshin Nasukawa’s astonishing spinning back kick KO victory in the semi-final, setting in motion the start of his tremendous career which continues to grow to this day. True to the name "KNOCK OUT", the show delivered 5 of the 6 bouts by KO.
Marking the 1st anniversary of KNOCK OUT, this show was held at the Ryogoku Kokugikan, our biggest venue as of yet, in front of a sold-out audience. The main event featured the final of the Lightweight tournament, and Yosuke Morii won by KO to become the first Lightweight Champion.
Yosuke Morii, the then Lightweight Champion, fought against Yodlekpet - an MVP fighter in Muay Thai – in Yodlekpet’s first championship match. This bout saw Yodlekpet break Morii’s nose with a textbook brutal elbow, and win by doctor stoppage to become the new Lightweight Champion.