Undefeated Bulgarian heavyweight Blagoi
is fighting for his life at Pirogov Hospital in Sofia,
Bulgaria, after being stabbed in an early morning altercation
According to Bulgarian website Fighter.bg, the 25-year-old sambo
world champion was attending the after-party of boxing tournament
Strandja at Graf Ignatiev restaurant when a group of eight men
armed with guns and knives attacked Ivanov and his two friends.
Ivanov was reportedly stabbed below the armpit, with the blade of
the knife penetrating his heart.
The Bellator-signed heavyweight was immediately rushed to the
hospital, where doctors performed a 6-hour emergency surgery. He is
currently on life support and, according to a source with knowledge
of the situation, the next 48 hours will be crucial for the young
Ivanov’s friends suffered only minor wounds and were quickly
discharged from the hospital, according to a report from
Sofia Metropolitan Police have made several arrests of people who
are thought to be involved in the bloody melee.
Ivanov rose to fame in November 2008 when he defeated former Pride
heavyweight champion Fedor
Emelianenko in a sambo bout at the 2008 World Sambo
Championships in St. Petersburg, Russia. The stocky sambist
subsequently signed with Japanese promotion Sengoku and defeated
former Pride star Kazuyuki
Fujita in his debut.
Most recently, Ivanov stopped former UFC heavyweight champion
Rodriguez in Russia on Christmas Eve. He was scheduled to
headline Max Fight 27 in the Bulgarian capital on April 24 against
another American challenger.
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