Sengoku 7 Results and Recap

Quick Results:

  • Satoru Kitaoka def. Takanori Gomi by submission (heel hook) — Round 1, 1:41
  • Jorge Santiago def. Kazuo Misaki via technical submission (rear naked choke) — Round 5, 3:26
  • Sanae Kikuta def. Hidehiko Yoshida via split decision
  • Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal def. Yukiya Naito via TKO (punches) in Round 1, 3:54
  • Antonio Silva def. Yoshihiro Nakao via TKO (knee injury) in Round 1, 1:42
  • Eiji Mitsuoka def. Sergey Golyaev via technical submission (arm bar) in  Round 1, 4:22
  • Mu Bae Choi def. Dave “Pee Wee” Herman via TKO (punches) — Round 2, 2:22
  • Maximo Blanco def. Seigo Inoue via TKO (foot stomps) — Round 1, 0:38
  • Hidetada Irie def. Minoru Kato via TKO (punches from mount) — Round 2, 4:21

 

  • Gomi’s quick loss to Kitaoka means 2 things for World Victory Road.  1 – Their pre-crowned champ is not the Japanese star they expected 2- Gomi’s marketability and talent are waning fast.  That is pretty crazy for a guy who was ranked the number 1 lightweight in the world at the time of PRIDE’s collapse.  I wonder if  Gomi thinks he should have gone with the UFC now.  His stock is greatly hurt though
  • Kitaoka is apparently better than given credit for
  • Eiji Mitsuoka has looked pretty good and he could be a name to remember
  • Bad loss for Dave Herman in the midst of ProElite’s slow death.  It looks like he may not be a lock for a contract in a big U.S. promotion now that he lost to a no-namer
  • Muhammaed Lawal continues to impress and draw attention.  He may be a real guy to take note of. 

Could A New Year Bring New Faces Into the UFC?

A new year brings new possibilities.  Not to mention the fact that the UFC is being intentional in its global international expansion which could mean going hard after some of these very marketable guys.  Could we see these guys in the UFC in 2009?  Their names have been linked to the UFC recently.  Check out the possibilities.

  • Mirko Cro Cop – says he wants a farewell fight in the UFC, probably would be late in 2009.  Click here for more
  • Satoshi Ishii – is in exclusive negotiations with the UFC.  He won’t debut in the UFC, but the UFC will help with his training and development.  The 2008 Olympic Judo gold medalist will be in the UFC in some way barring a failure in his debut.  It is likely that he would be on TUF 10 which may featue heavyweights.
  • Alistair Overeem – Has been linked to negotionations with the UFC and will be at UFC 93 in Dublin, Ireland. Check it out here.
  • Jeff Monson – He may fight once more in Japan or he may come straight over to the UFC.  I know there was talk about a Monson vs. Kongo match.  He is a great grappler which would be a good add to the heavyweight division and a tough fight for Kongo.
  • Mike Russow – He is rough around the edges but he could be a good prospect
  • Bobby Lashley – His only 1-0 in MMA, but he looked impressive a la Brock Lesnar.  He just signed a 2 fight deal with PFC and if all goes well there we could see Lashley in the UFC by late 2009.  He could have a big impact and be a big crowd draw.  Knock him all you want, but he has potential and he really thinks he could hang with guys like Lesnar already.

Keep an eye on: Dave Herman and Brett Rogers

Light Heavyweights:

  • Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante – He has made it no secret that his ultimate goal is the UFC.  How soon he gets there will depend on the future of ProElite.  It could be 2009.
  • Antwain Britt – I do not know how much thought there is to signing Britt, but he looked good in his TUF 8 fight-on fight.  He was forced off due to injury and has looked good sense.  It may be wise to lock him up.

Keep an eye on: Muhammad Lawal and Robert Drysdale

Middeliweights

  • Robbie Lawler – He is the EliteXC champ.  I would say since he is widely viewed as the number 2 middleweight in the world that he may be offered a good contract in the UFC provided EliteXC dies.
  • Joey Villasenor –  Following the collapse of EliteXC, Villasenor was one who mentioned his desire to fight in the UFC.  The status of ProElite is the barrier here.  He could end up in the UFC, but watch for Bellator and Affliction to make runs at Smokin’ Joe.
  • Yoshihiro Akiyama – Many think he is a top 10 middleweight in the world.  He could come over to the UFC since it was reported he was in negotionations with Sengoku and UFC.  Then is came out that negotionations with Sengoku broke down.  That may be a clue…or it may not
  • David Louiseau – A couple of wins since leaving the UFC and Louiseau finds himself knocking on the UFC door again.  He may be signed for the next Canada card, but he may need one more win.  Nevertheless, look for the former number 1 contender to be given another chance. 

Welterweights

  • Jake Shields – He has made no bones about it that he wants in the UFC and that he wants a fight with Georges St. Pierre.  Right now the UFC is the only place for a welterweight to go to really test themselves.  One more time ProElite is an issue here, but I am confident that eventually Shields will fight in the UFC.
  • Paul Daley – Daley said in a recent interview that he expects to be in the UFC in 2009.  He must clear his contract with ProElite first.  He is a tough English fighter who could be a good add as the UFC looks to expand worldwide.
  • Phil Baroni – He is re-invented at 170 lbs.  In a recent interview with FiveOuncesofPain Baroni said he would like to be in the UFC in 2009.  I think he could get a chance.  He may need one or two more wins though.  Baroni has said he is tired of being a “journeyman” which means he may want to fight for a US based organization.
  • T.J. Grant – He has been called the best Canadian not in a major organization.  I look for the UFC to snatch him up.  The UFc wants to push in Canada and Grant is a good prospect.  He may be signed sooner than later as the UFC will be in Canada several times in 2009.

Lightweight

  • Gilbert Melendez- He has one more fight left with Strikeforce, which should come by March.  Then I look for him to hit the free agent market.  His next fight could determine his value.  A win could make him worthwhile.  He has mentioned the UFC in several interviews as a possible home.

The UFC addes several prospects in 2008.  Look for more guys to burst onto the scene in 2009.  Some have already been signed and will make their debut in 2009 such as Denis Kang, Ronnys Torrys, Stefan Struve, Neil Grove, John Howard, etc. 

I look for about half these guys to sign in the UFC and I expect some surprises which could be dictated by the futures of Affliction and ProElite as well as the quality of TUF competitors.

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. 

    Sengoku 5 Results

    Non Tournament Bouts:

    Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal def. Travis Wiuff via TKO (strikes) – Round 1

    Alexandre “Xande” Ribeiro def. Takashi Sugiura via TKO (strikes) – Round 3

    Jorge Masvidal def. Ryan Schultz via TKO (strikes) – Round 1

    Kiuma Kunioku def. A Sol Kwon via unanimous decision

    Middleweight Tournament Results:

    Siyar Bahadurzada def. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos via TKO (elbow injury) – Round 1 – 22 Seconds!

    Jorge Santiago def. Logan Clark via arm triangle submission in Round 2

    Kazuhiro Nakamura def. Paul Cahoon via unanimous decision

    Yuki Sasaki def. Yuki Kondo via rear naked choke submission  in round 2