Brazil’s Roan Carneiro is WKN Middleweight MMA Champion, breaks Kelvin Joseph’s undefeated record in Auckland, New Zealand

Roan Carneiro (2nd from left) (©World Kickboxing Network)

Roan Carneiro (2nd from left) (©World Kickboxing Network)

Roan “Jucao” Carneiro of Brazil recently won the title in mixed martial arts middleweight division of the World Kickboxing Network. The former Ultimate Fighting Championship fighter won the belt when the professional kickboxing organization returned to New Zealand.

On November 30, 2019, the WKN held a historic World Cup at the Eventfinda Stadium in Auckland, New Zealand. In the main event, Carneiro competed for the WKN Middleweight MMA Championship against Kelvin “Crazy Horse” Joseph of New Zealand, who entered the ring undefeated in 15 professional MMA outings.

“At this time of my career, I look for excitements,” Carneiro said prior to the fight night. “I’ve had a true amazing run in UFC, I fought in so many places around the world, (but) never in New Zealand so, I say why not? This particular fight is making me very excited and I trained my ass off for that.”

In response, Joseph said everything Carneiro was saying was true. The Kiwi MMA fighter said, “That’s why I came out of my retirement because he is a legend and I wanted the opportunity to fight one of those guys.”


Carneiro was looking to make the final mark in his spectacular career. Scheduled for five rounds, the championship bout did not go the distance.

A third degree Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, Carneiro claimed the win as well as the belt by submission via rear naked choke at 4 minutes and 50 seconds in the opening round. This improved the professional MMA record of the former UFC fighter to 22 wins and 13 losses.

On the other hand, Joseph suffered the first defeat in his career as a professional MMA fighter. He now has 15 wins and 1 loss.

In the post-fight interview, Carneiro was asked what was next in his career as a fighter. He said, “Honestly, I really don’t know.”

“I am probably going to retire after this one,” Carneiro continued. “I want more time to enjoy my kids, and I really care about my team. This year was fantastic for all of us.”

“Dhiego Lima had great performance against tough opponents in the UFC, Anthony Martin earned a great win at UFC Moscow and Douglas Lima won the Bellator welterweight World Grand Prix and regained Bellator welterweight title,” Carneiro added. “I couldn’t ask for better results.”

Alongside New Zealand, the list of countries represented at the event included Brazil, Ethiopia, Germany, India, Iran, Palestine, South Africa, Tonga and the United States. In addition to the bouts, New Zealand’s hip-hop artists SAVAGE and 4Sayken performed their hits.

The event marked the first time kickboxing and MMA bouts were contested at the same event on the world level in New Zealand. It was presented by Team Player Events, Sky Sport television and Mai FM radio.

In collaboration with International Vale Tudo Championship, the WKN became a pioneer organization in presenting MMA bouts in Europe in the 2000s. In 2016, the kickboxing organization launched its MMA branch awarding world and subordinate championships internationally.

Also on November 30, 2019, two other WKN championship events in France and Germany. French Samuel Dbili earned the WKN European Super Middleweight Kickboxing Championship title by decision against Branko Babachev at “Fight Furious Tour” in Perpignan, France. Six new national champions were crowned at “X’ite Fight Night 7” in Trittau in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.

Meanwhile, here is an interview with Carneiro seven years ago:

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