Russia is a weird and (sometimes) wonderful place. Evidence: The Russian mixed martial arts promotion M-1 Global recently launched M-1 Medieval, a ultimate fighting division that has opponents dressing up like knights and swinging swords at each other’s heads until one wins.
The spectator shown 25 seconds into the above highlight video is loving it, and so are viewers, according to M-1 president Vadim Finkelchtein, who decided to launch the Medieval division after trying it out in front of audience as filler between regular MMA bouts last August.
“I liked the fans’ reaction when we did it for the first time in St. Petersburg at M-1 Challenge 50,” Finkelchtein told MMAFighting.com last month. “They seemed to really like it. They were impressed and supported the knights. So, I thought it was worth continuing.”
The first official M-1 Medieval division fight took place on April 10 in Moscow.
Welterweights Evgeniy Bedenko (6-1) and Ivan Vasiliev (11-2), both of whom have previously fought in armored MMA fights, walked to the Octagon like anachronistic tin men, each with his own heavy metal guitar riff playing in the background.
The two gallantly fought for three three-minute rounds before one’s head fell off. Just kidding. The bout, won by Bendenko on a unanimous decision, produced no injuries (visible ones, at least) for either fighter, unlike regular MMA fights. Still, however, considering there is a huge risk of severe head trauma here, it’s probably best not to try this at home.
Here’s the full fight.