M-1 Challenge XXIII: Guram vs. Grishin kicks off 2011

Moscow, Russia (January 3, 2011) – Kicking off the new year, M-1 Global announces its first event of 2011; on March 5th, from the Crocus City Arena in Moscow Russia, M-1 Challenge XXIII: Guram vs. Grishin will see the current heavyweight champ, Guram Gugenishvili, defend his title for the first time against 2010 Selections Eastern European tournament winner, Maxim Grishin.

“M-1 Global has crowned their champions and 2011 is the year for these stars to defend what they have rightfully earned,” says Evgeni Kogan, Director of Operations of the worldwide mixed martial arts promotion. “Guram knows what he has to do at M-1 Challenge XXIII and every heavyweight here on out is gunning to take the belt away from him. His reign is in his hands and M-1 will provide the stage for the showdown between two highly talented fighters.”

The clash was originally slated for M-1 Challenge XXI however Grishin was forced to withdraw due to an injury sustained in training just weeks before the October 28th event date. Stepping into replace Grishin was American Selections tournament winner, Kenny ‘Deuce’ Garner who succumbed to Guram early in the second round via rear-naked-choke; with the win, Guram become M-1’s first-ever heavyweight champion.

Championship Bout

Heavyweight Division:

Guram Gugenishvili, M-1 Challenge Champion (10-0) clashes with

Maxim Grishin, M-1 Selection Eastern Europe 2010 champion (7-4)

  • Additional bouts to be announced shortly

With M-1 Challenge champions established in all five weight classes, a true contenders system will fuel events throughout 2011, driving  M-1 Global’s growth as a leading brand in the US and international markets.

2011’s full slate of M-1 Challenge events held in the United States and Europe are primed to be mega-event spectaculars where Champions defend their titles and contenders jockey for position for a coveted shot at the gold. Feeding the contention system will be two Selection tournaments in 2011 with details being announced shortly.

Free broadcast coverage of the entire M-1 Challenge XXIII event will be available at a later date to viewers worldwide on www.M-1Global.com and selected affiliate partner sites.