Polish fighters leave leading Russian promotion following Ukraine invasion

The Ukrainian-Russian conflict does not cease to influence combat sports. This week, the head of Shocker MMA Solutions Artur Ostaszewski announced that Polish fighter will be leaving their participation at Absolute Championship Akhmat. ACA is owned by Ranzam Kadyrov, the head of the Russian Republic of Chechen.

Kadyrov  was once a patron of Khabib Nurmagomedov and was even the one to break the news about his father’s passing publicly.

llMptoaygs 6,f o2101164re72d · Training in AkhmatMMA with Ramzan Kadyrov. Chechnya, Grozny.
llMptoaygs 6,f o2101164re72d ·
Training in AkhmatMMA with Ramzan Kadyrov.
Chechnya, Grozny.

Despite the massive influence, Khabib has yet to comment on the recent news of Russia invading Ukraine.  Khabib’s family has a long relationship with Ukraine – he allegedly even tried to get Ukraine citizenship in the past.  Khamzat Chimaev is another of his protages – being a Chechen himself. One of the biggest controversies in terms of Kadyrov  and combat sports stemmed from staging an event that held MMA fights between children, which sparked revolt all around the world. Kadyrov’s own underage sons fought in the organization.

Kadyrov is seen by many as a ruthless dictator with problematic views regarding women’s rights and the LGBT community. He was also allegedly involved in the attempts of censoring his critics, including journalists.

Earlies this week, Kadyrov announced the deployment of thousands of Chechen troops in Ukrainian ground, to go fight in aid of Russia.

You can read more about this story here.

Following that, “Schocker MMA Solutions” made the following statement on their Instagram post.

“In connection with the military aggression of the Russian Federation in Ukraine, which we condemn, we have decided not to take part in sporting events organised by Absolut Championships Akhmat and to terminate the contracts of all fighters representing our Team, who have been bound by a long-term contract with the Russian promoter, i.e. Piotr Strus, Łukasz Kopera, Daniel Omielańczuk.”

“At the same time, we would like to emphasize that all ACA employees have always treated us with the utmost respect, understanding, and willingness to help, and participation in ACA sporting events itself has been an honor and great sporting adventure for us.”

“However, in the current situation, we cannot imagine continuing to compete on the territory of and for organizations from the Russian Federation or Belarus.”

“To all the people of Ukraine, fans, and athletes, we wish peace beyond our eastern border and a return to normality, also in sport. #NoWar”

One of the biggest Polish names in MMA, former Lightheavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz, has also positioned himself against the Russian war.

Recently, he entered an online discussion with Middleweight contender, Sean Strickland, about the Russian war.

Earlier this week, Sean argued in an online post to his social media that Ukraine should just “Bend the knee and become Russia”.

Blachowicz did not take enjoy that statement from the American fighter.

The former champion responded on Twitter by saying:

“Would you?” Blachowicz questions Strickland. “It is easy to give away someone else’s independence…”

“The history of the Eastern European region is full of struggle and suffering. Ukraine – as a country and as a people – has endured much.”

“Their resistance is understandable and admirable. Freedom!”

On another note, one of the biggest MMA promotions in Europe, KSW, has announced that due to the Russian Federation invasion of Ukraine, the organizations canceled one of their athlete’s upcoming fights, due to him being from Russia.

Fans are now debating if it is right for athletes who had nothing to do with Russia’s decision to invade Ukraine, to be punished for their country’s actions.