Reigning Karate Combat World Welterweight Champion Josh Quayhagen [5-1 Karate Combat Record] will defend his belt during the upcoming Karate Combat: Season 3 series.
Quayhagen will leave the USA later this month to travel to an undisclosed location to face Dionicio ‘El Capitan’ Gustavo [5-2 KC Record], a Dominican Republic navy commando and two-time Pan-American gold medalist in full-contact karate.
Quayhagen, who counts wins over UFC veteran Anthony Njokuani and Cosmo Alexandre among his career victories, is the first first American fighter to hold a Karate Combat world championship. And as a proud Louisianan, he’s out to write his own name into the Pelican State honor roll.
“Louisiana pride is a thing! We’re all so proud of what Dustin Poirier has accomplished. Fighters like him and Daniel Cormier put us on the map. I’m inspired by that and I’m proud that I’ve been able to bring another world championship belt to Louisiana,” he says.
“And that belt is staying here, I promise you. It’s gonna get on that plane with me - and then it’s gonna get right on that plane home afterwards. Back to America, back to Louisiana, back to that southern hospitality it’s gotten used to!”
When Quayhagen and Gustavo step into The Pit, it will be their second encounter inside Karate Combat’s trademark fighting arena. Quayhagen snapped Gustavo’s win streak in 2019 and leapfrogged his way into a successful title shot, something he knows ‘El Capitan’ has neither forgotten nor forgiven.
“Gustavo thought he was on the path to becoming champion, which is why I wanted that fight with him. I derailed him and I know he’s been looking at me and thinking about me ever since, so I’m pumped to run this fight back now that I’m champion,” says Quayhagen.
“Being the defending champion for this one is exciting. I’m used to being the hunter but now there’s a target on my back and I like that. I know that hunger, that feeling of wanting to be champion, and it excites me knowing that these guys are all coming for me now.”
Karate Combat also confirmed today that living legend Bas Rutten, himself a karate black belt, will return for lead commentator duties in Season 3, along with Karate Combat presenter Layla Anna-Lee and play-by-play commentator Josh Palmer.
Events take place in undisclosed locations and are closed to the public. With incredible backdrops and virtual worlds provided by the Epic Games Unreal Engine (Fortnite, Mandalorian) each season’s bouts take place under conditions of strict confidentiality before being released in individual episodes via Karate.com
Episode One of Karate Combat: Season 3 is scheduled to premier in late Spring via Karate.com