Felipe Micheletti: GLORY Kickboxer on Last Fight, MMA Transition and More

Felipe Micheletti is coming off a big split decision win last month at GLORY 66: Paris. In the bout, he bested Luis Tavares via split decision. On the biggest kickboxing stage in the world, Micheletti showed up, got deep into a war, and came out on top.

Nobody likes a bully. But, you can thank bullies for Felipe Micheletti’s kickboxing career. Well, that and Jackie Chan and Jean Claude Van Damme movies.

“I’ve always liked fighting for the influence of action movies. My dad was very much a fan of Jean Claude Van Damme and Jackie Chan. For example, at age 9, my father and I made an impromptu punching bag and I kept joking around the house,” says Micheletti.

“At age 16, I actually entered martial arts and the biggest reason I got started was that I suffered bullying at school. I already liked a lot of fighting, but I needed a reason to start. Bullying was my initial motivation. Today, I should thank the boy who beat me at school.”

Micheletti just came off of the closest fight of his career. Felipe Micheletti has Luis Tavares and GLORY matchmaking to thank for that.

“I thought the fight really was well balanced. I tried to get the win with more forceful strikes, but Luis Tavares’ game is difficult and did not fit very well with mine. I believe that, in the end, to have gone forward and “hunted” more the fight was the determining factor for the victory and, no matter if 1 to 0 or 5 t 0, victory is victory and this was very important for my career.”

While fans may adore knockouts and finishes, sometimes a fight is a fight. Going the distance and winning via split decision isn’t a bad thing in Micheletti’s eyes.

“I was pleased with the result, but not entirely satisfied. I hoped I could have done more during the fight. I think some factors hampered me, among them, the change of opponent at the time, because the style of Arthur Gorlov is the opposite of Luis Tavares.”

We see that all the time. A late change in opponent can change how an entire fight is approached. Case and point, Dylan Price in his previous boxing match.

Micheletti continues, “I had been training with another strategy. I had done my last fight in GLORY, and those 8 months without fighting may have influenced in some aspects during the fight. I was a little bit off with my reaction time and distance, but overall it was a good fight, very technical.”

Felipe Micheletti has had some experience training some of the best MMA fighters in the world. Having helped in the camps of Shogun Rua, Fábio Maldonado and Francimar Barroso, Micheletti has expressed interest in competing in mixed martial arts. While he feels he’s not quite ready for the cross over yet, he’s planting the seeds to do it now.

“I feel like trying MMA and debuting at some legal event, but not making the transition at once. I still have my goals in kickboxing and I intend to keep fighting standing up for a while still. Who knows in the future? When I achieve my goals in kickboxing, then I can focus more on MMA. I’m already training jiu jitsu and wrestling to be ready when the opportunity knocks on my door and I think it’s the right moment.”

ONE Championship has been making waves in the martial arts community by having not only MMA grand prix, but also Muay Thai and kickboxing grand prix as well. “There are many events that I admire and I feel like participating, ONE Championship is one of them. I would love to be part of this organization and showcase my work at the event. Who knows, maybe even seek to be the champion in ONE Championship!”

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All Work and No Play

…makes you a dull boy. Kickboxing, and martial arts, in general, can produce some odd and fun times. Micheletti shared some of those with us.

“My team and I have gone through a lot of things, amongst them we were fighting at events that did not have lodging for the athletes and we once had to sleep on top of the fight ring itself, inside the gym. But I believe the most complicated are the opportunities that pop up at the top of the hour,” says Micheletti.

“Once an event promoter called me to fight the following week with the lower weight champion. I had to lose 14 kg in 5 days. Another occasion was when, at the end of 2016, there was an opportunity to fight in China on January 1, which for us was the first day of the year, I would fight on New Year’s Eve, but the Chinese calendar is different. I was already untrained, resting and waiting for the holidays, but I accepted the proposal and went anyway. I had to go alone, without a coach and only two days before the fight. I lost weight because the fight was over 100kg and I did not know. I fought against event champion Andrey Gerasinchuck, it was a tough fight and despite all the odds, I knocked him down, but in the last round I was very tired and I ended up losing by points. I spent the new year in the best possible way, fighting.”

Felipe Micheletti will go on to compete in kickboxing finding more and more success as he goes. At only 29 years old, he has plenty of roads ahead of his career. Be sure to follow Felipe on Instagram and Facebook!

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