Sengoku 6 Results and Thoughts

Quick Results:

  • Jorge Santiago def. Kazuhiro Nakamura via TKO (strikes) — Round 3, 0:49
  • Satoru Kitaoka def. Kazunori Yokota via unanimous decision
  • Sergey Golyaev def. Takanori Gomi via split decision
  • Muhammed Lawal def. Fabio Silva via TKO (strikes) — Round 3, 0:41
  • Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Moise Rimbon via unanimous decision
  • Jorge Masvidal def. Seung Hwan Bang via unanimous decision
  • Joe Doerksen def. Izuru Takeuchi via TKO (punches) — Round 3, 4:13
  • Satoru Kitaoka def. Eiji Mitsuoka via submission (heel hook) — Round 1, 1:16
  • Kazunori Yokota def. Mizuto Hirota via unanimous decision+
  • Kazuhiro Nakamura def. Yuki Sasaki via unanimous decision^
  • Jorge Santiago def. Siyar Bahadurzada via submission (heel hook) — Round 1, 1:10
    • The big winners of the night: Jorge Santiago and Satoru Kitaoka.  They were the grand prix winners
    • The big news may be that Gomi lost a split decision to the Russian, Golyaev. 
    • Kitaoka commented on fighting Gomi or Golyaev:

    I have no need to fight that Russian fighter. If it was me in there tonight, I would have crushed that Russian in seconds. I had a tougher time than Gomi — my two fights tonight and my training for them — so that’s why I said what I said [when I challenged Gomi in the ring]. Anyone have a problem with that?  I do believe that this weight class is comfortable for me. I don’t typically like to show just how hard I train, but from August to October, I had the hardest training of my life. Mitsuoka was tough he was able to sprawl on my takedown initially, and I felt that it gave him confidence, but I was able to feel out the rest of his abilities and end the fight. If I were to fight him 10 times, I would probably win two or three times, because I think he’s that strong. Still, those two or three times would be impressive showings for me.

    • WVR says they still plan to match up Takanori Gomi and Satoru Kitaoka on January 4th for the lightweight title
    • Also, Kazuo Misaki will take on Jorge Santiago for the middleweight title on January 4th. Santiago said:

    I’ve been waiting for Misaki a long time. I fought here against [Yuki]Sasaki the first time and made my way up. I fought twice today and thought I was gonna have a belt, but I didn’t get it — I have to fight again. How long do I have to fight to get the belt? I beat everybody. Come on. Where’s Misaki

    • Muhammed Lawal continued to impress with his win over Fabio Silva
    • Takanori Gomi ought to be out of any discussion about being  a top 3 lightweight in the world.  Overrated!

    Sengoku 6 Preview and Predictions

    Sengoku 6 will be held November 1st and will feature the conclusions of the middleweight and lightweight grand prixs as well as several additional fights…

    Non-Tournament Bouts:

    Antonio Rogerio Nogueira vs. Rimbon Moisa

    I am a big Nogueira fan (both Nogueiras).  The littler of the Nogueiras is a star in Japan.  He is also widely consdiered one of the best non-UFC light heavyweight fighters.  I would love to see him against consistently tougher competition.  The only place he will find that at 205 lbs is in the UFC.  I do not look for this to be much of a fight as Nogueira is a world class fighter and grappler.  Nogueira has solid wins in his career over guys like Sakuraba, Kazuhiro Nakamura, Alistair Overeem, Guy Mezger, and Dan Henderson.  Most recently, he is coming off of a win at Affliction’s first card over Edwin DeWees.  I predict that Nogueira will land a few hard blows to Moisa and then take him down and win by rear naked choke in round 1. 

    Takanori Gomi vs. Sergey Golyaev

    Takanori Gomi has for a long time been considered the best or at least a top 3 lightweight in the world.  However, he has been inactive lately and certainly has not fought tough competition.  Golyaev is not a bad fighter, but he is not in Gomi’s league skill wise.  He has not beaten many top level guys, in fact, he has lsot to the elite guys he has fought such as Joachim Hansen, Rich Clementi and Kurt Pellegrino.  Gomi on the other hand has been in there and won with some of the best in the world.  Gomi dominated in PRIDE boasting wins over guys like Marcus Aurelio, Mitsuhiro Ishida, Hayato Sakurai, Jens Pulver and Tatsuya Kawajiri.  I do not see Gomi losing this fight.  Gomi is rumored to be facing the winner of the lightweight grand prix for the Sengoku lightweight title.  I honestly cannot see Gomi losing to any of the lightweight in this tournament either.  Gomi beat Seung Hwan Bang in his last outing, but looked really unimpressive.  Therefore, I pick Gomi to win by unanimous decision, even though the KO or TKO is likely. 

    Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal vs. Fabio Silva

    Might Mo looked very, very impressive in his MMA debut against a very tough fighter in Travis Wiuff.  Lawal is a solid wrestler who looks to have great ground and pound skills.  He should have no problem in this fight.  He is a star in the making, especially in Japan.  I think that Lawal will be impressive again and will win this fight by way of TKO in round 1.

    Lightweight Semi-Finals

    Satoru Kitaoka vs. Eiji Mitsuoka

    Mitsuoka is coming off of a win over highly touted Rodrigo Damm.  He also has an impressive resume with wins over guys like Joachim Hansen, Samy Schiavo, and Gleison Tibau.  His opponent Satoru Kitaoka has an impressive win list also, boasting wins over guys like Cage Rage Welterweight Champ Paul Daley, WEC welterweight champ Carlos Condit, and UFC fighter Kurt Pellegrino.  This is a tough fight to pick.  I am very tempted to pick Kitaoka because of the wins he has over Condit and Daley, but I am going to pick Mitsuoka by unaimous decision.

     Mizuto Hirota vs. Kazunori Yokota

    Hirota has a big win over Ryan Schultz in his first fight in the tournament.  I expect Hirota to make it to the finals, but I expect him to win by a decision.

    Seung Hwan Bang vs. Jorge Masvidal (Lightweight Reserve Bout)

    Bang lost his last fight to Takanori Gomi.  Masvidal beat Ryan Schultz.  I think in the end Masvidal is too good and will win this one by TKO in round 1.  Keep an eye on Masvidal he could be a replacement and win the tournament though I won’t pick that. 

    Lightweight Finals:

    Hirota/Yokota vs. Mitsuoka/Kitaoka

    If my picks are correct the finals will be Mitsuoka vs. Hirota.  I would pick Mitsuoka to win that fight by decision.

    Middleweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals:

    Yuki Sasaki vs. Kazuhiro Nakamura

    Sasaki is a verteran of MMA who has fought nearly everywehre including the UFC.  However, I think Sasaki is the underdog in this fight.  Nakamura who is a top 25 light heavyweight who has amde a smart drop down to 185.  Following a unsuccessful stint in the UFC Nakamura will try his hand at Sasaki.  I pick Nakamura to win this fight by decision. 

    Jorge Santiago vs. Siyar Bahadurzada

    Santiago is the clear favorite to win this tournament because he is clearly the most talented of the guys in the competition.  He has a solid resume with good wins over good fighters.  He also is a UFC veteran who struggled inside the octagon, but has won his last 5 fights (Logan Clark, Yuki Sasaki, Sean Salmon, Trevor Prangley, and Jeremy Horn).  We have yet to really see what Siyar the Afghan Killer can do.  By the way, his nickname, “The Afghan Killer”, I have to wonder about the meaning of it.  I know he is from Afghanistan, but does the “Afghan Killer” mean that he is a killer of Afghans or that he is an Afghan who is a killer.  That is my deep thought of the day.  Nevertheless, I pick Santiago to win this fight by a submission in round 1.

    Joe Doerksen vs. Izuru Takeuchi (Middleweight Reserve Bout)

    I know that Takeuchi will have home ring advantage, but in the end Doerksen will prove to be too good, especially on the ground.  I pick Doerksen to win by first round submission. 

    Middleweight Finals:

    Sasaki/Nakamura vs. Santiago/Bahaduzada

    My prediction is that Nakamura and Santiago will square off in the finals.  If both come into the fight injury free then I think Santiago will have an advantage stepping in.  I would say he will have better cardio and that he will win his fight before it gets to a decision.  Therefore I think that the final will consist of Santiago trying to take down the judoka and then submitting him.  Santiago will win the middlweight grand prix and in doing so will earn a shot at Kazuo Misaki for the middleweight title. 

    MMABlog’s Lightweight MMA Rankings

    Rank

    Name

    Organization

    Next Fight

    1

    B.J. Penn

    UFC

    St. Pierre (#1 WW) 1/31

    2

    Takanori Gomi

    World Victory Road

    Golyaev (NR), 11/1

    3

    Shinya Aoki

    DREAM

     

    4

    Eddie Alvarez

    EliteXC?

     

    5

    Sean Sherk

    UFC

    T. Griffin (#15), 9/25

    6

    Mitsuhiro Ishida

    DREAM/Strikeforce

     

    7

    Tatsuya Kawajiri

    DREAM

     

    8

    Kenny Florian

    UFC

    Stevenson (#10), 11/15

    9

    Josh Thomson

    Strikeforce

    Edwards (NR), 11/21

    10

    Joe Stevenson

    UFC

    Florian (#8), 11/15

    11

    Gesias Calvancante

    DREAM

     

    12

    Joachim Hansen

    DREAM

     

    13

    Gilbert Melendez

    Strikeforce

     

    14

    Jamie Varner

    WEC

     

    15

    Tyson Griffin

    UFC

    Sherk (#5), 9/25

    16

    Roger Huerta

    UFC

     

    17

    Gray Maynard

    UFC

    Clementi (NR), 9/25

    18

    Frank Edgar

    UFC

    Wiman (NR), 12/10

    19

    Vitor Ribeiro

     

     

    20

    Nate Diaz

    UFC

     

    21

    K.J. Noons

    EliteXC?

     

    22

    Joe Lauzon

    UFC

     

    23

    Nick Diaz

    EliteXC

     

    24

    Spencer Fisher

    UFC

    Gugerty (NR), 9/25

    25

    Caol Uno

    DREAM

     

     

    Others Considered: Clay Guida, Hermes Franca, Marcus Aurelio, Jim Miller, Jorge Masvidal , Rich Clementi, Matt Wiman, and Mac Danzig.

    Best Non-UFC Fighters

    Here are the best non-UFC fighters.  This shows where the UFC is stacked and where they lack.  There competition is mainly in Affliction at heavyweight and DREAM at lightweight.  Here are the best non-UFC guys that the UFC should look to sign if possible. 

    Rank

    Heavyweight

    Light Heavy

    Middleweight

    Welterweight

    Lightweight

    1

    Fedor Emelianenko

    Antonio Rogerio Nogueira

    Paulo Filho

    Jake Shields

    Takanori Gomi

    2

    Andrei Arlovski

    Ricardo Arona

    Matt Lindland

    Carlos Condit

    Shinya Aoki

    3

    Josh Barnett

    Rafael Feijao

    Robbie Lawler

    Jay Hieron

    JZ Calvancante

    4

    Tim Sylvia

    Vladimir Matyushenko

    Kazuo Misaki

    Nick Thompson

    Eddie Alvarez

    5

    Ben Rothwell

    Babalu Sobral

    Gegard Mousasi

    Mach Sakurai

    Mitsuhiro Ishida

    6

    Mirko Cro Cop

    Tito Ortiz

    Vitor Belfort

    Mike Pyle

    Joachim Hansen

    7

    Roy Nelson

    Steve Cantwell

     “Jacare” de Sousa

     

    Tatsuya Kawajiri

    8

    Aleks Emelianenko

    Brian Stann

    Jason Miller

     

    Josh Thomson

    9

    Antonio Silva

     

    Melvin Manhoef

     

    Gilbert Melendez

    10

    Alistair Overeem

     

    Murilio Rua

     

    Vitor Ribeiro

    11

     

     

    Cung Le

     

    Jamie Varner

    12

     

     

    Denis Kang

     

    Ryan Schultz

    13

     

     

    Joey Villasenor

     

    KJ Noons

    14

     

     

    Frank Shamrock

     

    Nick Diaz

    15

     

     

    Yoshihiro Akiyama

     

    Caol Uno

    16

     

     

    Jorge Santiago

     

     

    17

     

     

    Chael Sonnen

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Best Pound for Pound Fighter

    Following July 19th the debate began as to who is the best pound for pound fighter in the world in Mixed Martial Arts.  Before July 19th two people were really thought of as perhaps the top guy: Fedor Emelianenko and Anderson Silva.  Following July 19th the debate gets tougher with both guys winning.  Let me begin by defining the term best pound for pound.  The best pound for pound fighter does not necessarily mean that he could beat any fighter in the world.  For example at 145 lbs, Urijah Faber would stand little chance against most heavier opponents.  The pound for pound title is for the best fighter in the world, size and weight has nothing to do with it and a fight between #1 and #2 wouldn’t necessarily settle the debate.  That is why the title best pound for pound fighter is difficult to determine and is very subjective.  Here is my list of the best pound for pound fighters. 

    1. Anderson Silva –  Anderson is number one to me for a few reasons.  First, he has cleaned out the middleweight divison of the UFC.  There is not a middleweight that I think can beat him.  Second, he has beaten top fighters constantly.  He beat a top notch fighter in Dan Henderson and another in Rich Franklin, and he destryoed Franklin.  He beat a solid guy in Nate Marquardt.  Third, he challenges himself.  He moved up to 205 to fight James Irvin.  Irvin is not a stud a 205, but he has serious KO power.  He could have KO’d Silva, but Silva destroyed him quickly.  Fourth, Anderson is so well rounded.  His striking is legendary.  His Muay Thai is deadly.  His jiu jitsu is incredible although we don’t see much of it.  I don’t see him getting beat any time soon at 185 or 205. 

    2. Fedor Emelianenko –  I am tempted to rank Fedor 1b.  Someone could make a solid argument to him being number 1.  Fedor always impresses.  He really impressed against Sylvia.  Not just that he won, but that he won in 36 seconds.  He is no doubt the best heavyweight, but I put him second to Anderson because I do not feel he has cleaned out the divison like Anderson has.  Fedor still has several guys to beat that are top level.  I’d like to see him fight Couture, Arlovski and Barnett.  Don’t get me wrong Fedor has a great resume and has beaten great guys like Nogueira and Cro Cop.  Fedor is incredible.  As for now he is numebr 2 pound for pound and I think he has to win another and Silva has to lose to change that.

    3. B.J. Penn –  Pure talent B.J. may be up there with Anderson and Fedor.  I believe B.J. may be the guy to challenge the two above guys.  He has looked dominant since his return against Pulver, Stevenson, and Sherk.  He wants to fight St. Pierre in what would be a dream match.  B.J. is one of those guys that can fight at several divisons and he has made clear he wants the welterweight belt.  If he beats St. Pierre he has to be in the talk for number 1.  He has beaten solid welterweights before and can fight well at 170.  He has even talked about going up to 185 to challenge Anderson.  B.J.’s knock has always been his drive.  That has changed lately it seems and when on his game he can beat anyone at any weight.  B.J. made very good fighters in Sean Sherk and Joe Stevenson look bad.  I am on the Penn bandwagon right now and think that right now he can beat anyone at 155 and maybe anyone at 170. 

    4. Urijah Faber – Some people may want St. Pierre in this spot, but I have Faber.  Faber is an awesome featherweight.  He may be the best featherweight ever.  I and many still want the Yamamoto fight, but the Pulver fight was great.  Faber impressed there and moved up my rankings because of that.  I don’t see any 145 lb guy beating Faber.  His boxing is great and he is so innovative on the ground.  The category is best pound for pound fighter and I think Urijah is one of the best. 

    5. Georges St. Pierre – St. Pierre is not ranked higher because he does have a recent loss to Matt Serra.  I know he avenged that loss since then, but Serra I consider far less talented than him.  St. Pierre is the total package.  When he is on he is unstoppable, and the key is when he is on.  I don’t suspect he will lose to Jon Fitch and a matcvh with B.J. Penn is on the horizon.  St. Pierre looked great against Serra, Hughes and Koscheck lately.  He is beating top level talent at the welterweight divison.  he is a few fights away from cleaning out the divison.  If he beats Fitch, Penn, Alves and Sanchez, he may move up to 185.  St. Pierre is an awesome fighter and he has room to climb up.  I think what is so impressive about him is his desire to learn more and grow as a fighter. 

    6. Miguel Torres – A 135 pound fighter is hard to rank, however there is no doubt that Torres is the world’s best bantamweight.  His popularity is growing by leaps and bounds.  His last fight may be fight of the year.  He has sick jiu jitsu and showed he can stand and bang.  He has an incredible overall record and he sports a mullet unashamedly.  Torres is great at 135.  Many are calling for a Torres vs. Faber fight and that would be awesome as I believe Torres would be a challenge to Urijah.  I do not know if we know how good Miguel is and I do not know if we ever will.  He has to be one of the most underrated fighters in the world. 

    7. Lyoto Machida – I do not know how many people consider Machida in their pound for pound rankings, but I think it must be considered.  He is undefeated.  He dominated Tito Ortiz.  I know many people are critical of him, but right now he may be the world’s best light heavyweight.  He certainly fits the bill of being underrated.  Many people do not like him because of his style, but he keeps winning.  Some accuse him of running in fights, but he strikes and moves.  He is very effective.  If he keeps winning he needs to move up lists.  His fight with Thiago Silva at UFC 89 will tell us a lot.  Don’t sleep on Lyoto as a pound for pound top fighter. 

    8. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira – Big Nog is the UFC Heavyweight champion.  He has beaten great guys.  He takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’.  He has tons of talent and is very well rounded.  Most consider him the #2 or #3 heavyweight and in the midst of Couture’s desire to fight the best in Fedor he has overlooked fighting Nogueira.  In my opinion Randy should have challenged Nogueira for the belt before pulling this cry baby crap with the UFC and pouting because he wanted Fedor.  He could have foguht out his contract against Nogueira and one other guy and then left with no conflict to get the Fedor fight.  He could have fulfilled his contract with no controversy with the UFC.  His legacy is tarnished.  I think Nog would beat Randy.  He has proven himself over and over.  Nogueira is a solid fighter and I look forward to his fight with Mir and his TUF 8 coachind stint. 

    Others: Kid Yamamoto, Takanori Gomi, Paulo Filho, Forrest Griffin, Dan Henderson, Randy Couture, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

    Who Benefited Most From PRIDE’s Collapse?

    When PRIDE fell they were clearly the biggest competitors with the UFC, having many of MMA’s top guys.  They had some big time stars. Then PRIDE got into trouble and was bought by Zuffa.  So who benefited the most from PRIDE’s deminse?  There was a mad scramble to sign those guys who were now unemployed. I have been critical of the UFC’s ability to sign top PRIDE guys like Fedor, Gomi, Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, Arona, Kang, Mousasi, Melendez, etc. However, it looks like the UFC has done great due to PRIDE’s fall.  I ranked the PRIDE guys at the time of their collapse in order of who I would want to sign and the UFC benefited from it.  Now, the guys they have signed haven;t had huge success, but they are popular and will win eventually.  Can you imagine the UFC heavyweight divison without the influx of Nogueira, Werdum, and Herring???  The light heavyweight divison also was greatly boosted with the signings of Shogun, Wanderlei, Dan Henderson, Nakamura, and Sokoudjou.  UFC just struggles to get the lightweights. UFC signed 13 of those guys I listed and they have faired well, this doesn’t even include other guys who came in before the fall of PRIDE like “Rampage” Jackson.  Out of those guys you have some stars now in the UFC, some guys that can draw a crowd and one of them owns the belt (Nogueira).  DREAM and Affliction seemed to clean up what UFC couldn’t sign.  DREAM picked up the ligtweights, signing 8 of those PRIDE guys.  Affliction has a few signings.  So while I am critical of the UFC, let us give Dana and the UFC brass some credit for signing many of the top PRIDE guys.  I still would like to see the best of the best in one place, but it won’t happen, so this puts things into perspective and the UFC did good and benefited the most from PRIDE’s fall.

     

    Name

    Fight Organization Signed With

    Fedor Emelianenko

    Affliction

    Wanderlei Silva

    UFC

    Mauricio “Shogun” Rua

    UFC

    Mirko Cro Cop

    UFC (DREAM)

    Takanori Gomi

    World Victory Road

    Dan Henderson

    UFC

    Josh Barnett

    Affliction

    Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira

    UFC

    Paulo Filho

    WEC

    Antonio Rogerio Nogueira

    HCF

    Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou

    UFC

    Ricardo Arona

     

    Gilbert Melendez

    Strikeforce

    Fabricio Werdum

    UFC

    Gegard Mousasi

    DREAM

    Denis Kang

    DREAM

    Aleksander Emelianenko

    Affliction

    Marcus Aurelio

    UFC

    Akihiro Gono

    UFC

    Kauo Misaki

    DREAM

    Ricardo Almeida

    UFC

    Heath Herring

    UFC

    Joachim Hansen

    DREAM

    Ryo Chonan

    UFC

    Kazuhiro Nakamura

    UFC

    Tatsuya Kawajiri

    DREAM

    Mitsuhiro Ishida

    DREAM

    Alistair Overeem

    Strikeforce

    Kevin Randleman

     

    Phil Baroni

    EliteXC

    Hayato “Mach” Sakurai

    DREAM

    Murilio Bustamante

     

    Murilo “Ninja” Rua

    EliteXC

    UFC’s Best Divison

    I went to HDnet’s fighter rankings and based this on which UFC weight divisons had the most top 20 fighters.  I know there are other ways to judge the best, but this is interesting…

    1. Light Heavyweights –  They are stacked in the UFC.  This is where the light heavyweight competition lies.  They have the top 11 (Jackson, Henderson, Griffin, Liddell, Jardine, Machida, Wanderlei, Evans, Thiago Silva, and Sokodjou) guys in the world and 20 of the top 25 guys.  This is a great divison, full of star power.

    2. Welterweights – They have 10 of the top 20 (St. Pierre, Fitch, Hughes, Serra, Koscheck, Sanchez, Alves, Parisyan, Davis and Gono), but 8 of the world’s top ten.  They have a near top ten monopoly only missing out on Shields and Condit.  I feel that there are other UFC guys to mention in top 20 talk (Chris Wilson and Chris Lytle), but the divison is strong and has the top tier welterweights in the world.

    3. Lightweights – In most rankings the UFC gets cheated in the lightweight divison.  The system I used ranked 8 of their guys as top 20 in the world (Penn, Sherk, Huerta, Stevenson, Florian, Guida, Tyson Griffin, and Gray Maynard).  I know some of those other guys are good, but they are overrated.  Gomi can’t beat UFC guys.  Nick Diaz, B.J. Penn and Marcus Aurelo all beat him.  Aoki, Melendez, Calvancanti and bunch are unproven in my opinion against top guys.  Plus I feel some guys unfairly got left out of rankings.  Where is Marcu Aurelio?  FranK Edgar?  or Joe Lauzon?  or even Nate Diaz?  You mean to tell me Edgar is not a top 20?  This divison is stacked and has more contenders than any UFC divison.  DREAM does have some great lightweights.  I’d love to see a fight card of UFC’s top lightweights against DREAM’s top lightweights.  I think UFC would win easily.

    4. Middleweights – They have 7 of the top 20 fighters in the world at this divison (Anderson Silva, Rich Franklin, Dan Hemderson, Marquardt, Okami, Bisping and Leites.  I put this above heavyweights first of all because I believe there are some guys that could be in the top 20 mix (Quarry, MacDonald, Leben, Cote, Kampmann and Almeida). It still is weak, not because it isn’t deep, but because they can’t find anyone to compete with Anderson Silva.  Anderson Silva is the second reason I put this divison above Heavyweights…enough said.

    5. Heavyweights –  They also have 7 of the top 20 fighters in the world at Heavyweight  (Nogueira, Werdum, Gonzaga, Kongo, Vera, Mir and Herring).  Only 3 of those guys are top ten in the world.  All this assumed Arlovski signs with Affiction.  If that happens Affliction will have 6 of the top ten (Fedor, Sylvia, Barnett, Rothwell, Arlovski and Aleksander Emelianenko) plus Pedro Rizzo.  This is a weak divison for the UFC, but they do have some good prospects in Carwin, Lesnar and Velasquez.  This divison was once strong, but since has lost Couture, Cro Cop, Sylvia, Arlovski, and O’Brien.