Blagoi Ivanov is a Bulgarian Sambo practitioner who won the 2008 Combat Sambo World Championships in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Blagoi has also competed in Judo as a heavyweight national representative for Bulgaria. He competed in the 2003 Balkan Junior Championships and placed first. Then continued in competition up to the European Championships level but only placed 7th in the 2007 U23 Tournament, and did not make an attempt to represent Bulgaria in the 2008 Olympic games. Subsequently it seems that Ivanov has chosen to enter a career in Mixed Martial Arts as opposed to representing Bulgaria in the 2012 Olympic Games.
He notably defeated four-time World Combat Sambo Champion and the world's consensus top heavyweight mixed-martial arts fighter Fedor Emelianenko in the semi-finals of the 2008 World Sambo Championships on November 16, 2008. (He went on to win the finals over Germany's Stefan Janos the following day.) Ivanov previously faced Emelianenko in February 2008 at Russia’s Presidents Cup Sambo competition, losing the match to Emelianenko.
Ivanov started a career in mixed martial arts in his home country (1 victory & 1 NC) before going to World Victory Road, where he recently signed a three fight deal. His first fight took place at Sengoku 9 where he defeated Pride FC veteran, Kazuyuki Fujita by split decision, breaking both hands in the process.
He has been quoted saying that he wants to defeat Fedor in MMA, but has not signed a contract for this match up. Ivanov was set next to face Fedor's brother, Aleksander Emelianenko, but that fight and eventually the entire event on which the fight should have occurred was cancelled because Blagoi had broken both his hands in the fight against Fujita and was not able to heal and prepare properly for his fight with Aleksander.
Mixed martial arts recordEdit
|Professional record breakdown|
|6||2 wins||0 losses|
|Win||2-0 (1)||Kazuyuki Fujita||Decision (Split)||Sengoku 9||August 2, 2009||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan||Sengoku Debut|
|Template:NocontestNC||1-0 (1)||Ilir Latifi||No Contest (Ring Broke)||Real Pain Challenge 2||May 17, 2008||1||0:55||Sofia, Bulgaria|
|Win||1-0||Jancho Dimitrov||TKO (Strikes)||Real Pain Challenge 1||March 9, 2008||1||2:31||Sofia, Bulgaria||MMA Debut|