Posts Tagged ‘Masakazu Imanari’
Every Monday, MMA DieHards takes a look at the upcoming week’s schedule of small regional and international shows with a focus on UFC and Pride veterans as well as consensus-ranked fighters. Here’s what’s going down between Jan. 3 and Jan. 9:
Spotlight Event: Deep: Mayhem in Macau (Macau, China; Jan. 8 )
No. 12-ranked bantamweight and Deep bantamweight champion Masakazu Imanari (21-7-2) takes on Jae Hun Moon (0-1) in a non-title fight as Deep makes its first trip to China…Dream veteran Yusuke Kawaguchi (13-3) will put his Deep Megaton title on the line against Kazuhisa Tazawa (6-1-1)…In a non-title affair, Dream veteran and Deep welterweight champ Yuya Shirai (20-8) locks horns with Jeong Gyo Park (0-1)…Pride veteran Ryuta Sakurai (20-16-6) faces Yoann Gouaida (2-3)…TUF 5 alum Andy Wang (7-7-1) goes up against Yasushi Kitazaki (10-7-1).
Cage Fighting Manitoba: Monson vs. Mein (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada; Jan. 7)
No. 25-ranked heavyweight and UFC veteran Jeff Monson (39-11) squares off with Lee Mein (4-8) in the evening’s headlining bout.
Combat USA Fighting Championship (Green Bay, Wis.)
Evolution Combat Sports Championship: Friday Night Fights (Clovis, N.M.)
exciteFIGHT (Spokane, Wash.)
Seconds Out Boxing & MMA (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Tuff-N-Uff: Las Vegas vs. 10th Planet Riverside (Las Vegas)
American Fighting Organization: New Year’s Redemption 3 (Mansfield, Mass.)
Budo Fights 3: Resilience (Bend, Ore.)
NAAFS: Proving Ground Series (Cleveland, Ohio)
Wenatchee Valley Beatdown 4 (Wenatchee, Wash.)
Kokuow Vol. 2 (Nagoya, Aichi, Japan)
The Out of Obscurity series focuses on UFC and Pride veterans plus up-and-coming prospects, but to what end? The series is dedicated to pointing out fighters who are trying to claw their way out of obscurity and to the larger stages of organizations such as the UFC, Strikeforce, Bellator, Dream or Sengoku. So, what better way to cap off the year than to break down the fighters who have made waves on the regional and international circuit in 2010.
Some fighters featured in past editions of the weekly Out of Obscurity series have already jumped to the big show with varied levels of success – guys like Yuri Alcantara, Maiquel Falcao and Ken Stone, to name a few. Meanwhile, others continue to await their opportunity while shedding blood in front of a few hundred fans at small gymnasiums and event centers around the world.
As the year winds to an end, we’d like to take a look at some mixed martial artists who have made an impact while attempting to find their way back to the top. This year, Out of Obscurity presents a two-part “Making Waves” column to break down some of the year’s top performers, both up-and-coming prospects and veterans attempting to get back to the heights they had once attained. Today’s feature centers on the latter set of athletes, looking at some veterans of the bigger shows who have had a solid year but remain outside of the major promotions. These veterans form what we will call “The Old Guard.”
The criteria is simple: These men have either fought under the banner of a major organization or competed on a season of The Ultimate Fighter, but have been released and currently fight for smaller promotions. In addition, they cannot have stepped foot into the ring for any major promotions (UFC, WEC, Strikeforce, Bellator, Dream or Sengoku) in 2010.
Maybe we’ll see some of these warriors return to the big show in 2011:
Ricco Rodriguez – The former UFC heavyweight champion has not fought for a major promotion since his 2008 appearance in EliteXC. However, he has put together quite a record on the regional and international circuit since then, going 17-3 and currently riding a 10 fight winning streak dating back to July of 2009. The 45-11 Rodriguez keeps a very active schedule as well, winning seven fights since the beginning of the year. His victims have included Travis Fulton and Daniel Tabera.
Jeff Monson – “The Snowman” can definitely challenge Ricco Rodriguez for the title of most active UFC veteran of 2010. The 39-11 Monson has fought nine times this year, picking up seven victories along the way. The former UFC heavyweight contender picked up five of those wins via submission, while going 2-2 in bouts he left in the hands of the judges.
Dan Severn – “The Beast” is a UFC Hall of Famer who first set foot in the Octagon in 1994. His last appearance with the organization came at UFC 27, more than 10 years ago. That hasn’t stopped the four-time All-American wrestler from staying active, however. He’s amassed a 96-16-7 record in his 16 years in the sport, including a current seven fight winning streak stretching back to May of 2009. Severn has tallied five victories under the King of the Cage banner in 2010. The one thing holding him back might be the level of his competition – none of his 2010 opponents had more than five pro fights under their belt and three of those foes sported losing records.
Richie Whitson – The TUF 9 alum never set foot inside the Octagon in front of a live audience after being eliminated from the reality series tournament by eventual winner Ross Pearson. That comes despite a current record of 10-1. Whitson lost his first fight of 2010, a lightweight title bout in the Hawaii-based X-1 organization by split decision to Harris Sarmiento. Since then, he’s traveled the world to pick up four victories, including three by stoppage, to put his 2010 record at 4-1.
Glover Teixeira – Teixiera’s ability to qualify for this list, rather than that of the prospects, comes thanks to his time in the WEC, capped by a WEC 24 victory over Pride veteran Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou. The accomplished grappler is 11-2 overall, and 4-0 with three stoppages in 2010. Rather than plying his wares in the UFC or Strikeforce, Teixeira has been competing south of the equator for the Brazilian-based Bitetti Combat promotion as well as making a stop in Australia to notch a win at Impact FC 2.
Mike Whitehead – Whitehead’s troubles with the law have most likely played a large part in his absence from the big shows. A veteran of the WEC, UFC, IFL and Affliction, the 26-7 Whitehead spent 2009 in Strikeforce, where he picked up a win over Kevin Randleman before dropping his next fight to Muhammad Lawal. But 2010 found Whitehead in smaller shows against other UFC vets. He only fought twice this year, but made the most of those appearances by stopping Chase Gormley via TKO and earning a split decision over Eddie Sanchez.
Daisuke Nakamura – Nakamura’s pro debut came under the Pride banner and he has also logged time with Dream and Strikeforce, but in 2010 Nakamura’s biggest appearance came at the Astra show. There, he picked up the first win of his three victories on the year.
Tim Sylvia – Maybe it’s the lingering memory of his embarrassing knockout loss to Ray Mercer in 2009, or maybe it’s an issue of compensation, but this former UFC heavyweight champion’s lack of employment with a large organization is a bit perplexing. The 28-6 Sylvia is still among the heavyweight division’s top 25 according to the USA Today/SB Nation Consensus MMA Rankings and bounced back from the loss to Mercer by picking up four consecutive stoppage wins, including three in 2010. His victims this year included World’s Strongest Man Mariusz Pudzianowski and UFC veteran Paul Buentello.
Tommy Speer – The TUF 6 alum and UFC veteran has posted a 5-1 mark since 2009 and a 7-2 record since parting ways with the Zuffa-owned organization. “The Farm Boy” went 3-1 in 2010, suffering his only loss at the hands of top welterweight prospect Ryan Ford under The Fight Club’s banner.
Junior Assuncao – The last time the 11-4 Assuncao set foot inside the Octagon was 2007. Since then, Assuncao has compiled a 6-1 record, including his current five fight winning streak. He only fought twice in 2010, but both appearances ended in success for the Atlanta-based fighter.
Cristiano Marcello – The Pride veteran, most well-known for his backstage altercation with Charles “Krazy Horse” Bennett in 2005, has taken a few lengthy breaks from MMA. After shooting out of the gates to start his career at 4-0 in 1998, Chute Boxe’s Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu head coach didn’t return to active competition until 2002, when he went 1-1. Then it was another extended hiatus until a 2006-07 run where he went 3-1 and made his lone appearance with Pride. Bitetti Combat drew the 11-3 fighter back into the fray in 2010. He went 3-1 overall for the year, including a 2-1 stint under the Bitetti banner.
Micah Miller – The WEC and Dream veteran has put together a solid 2010 with a number of big wins to move his overall record to 17-4. After losing his first bout of the year to Michihiro Omigawa at the Astra show in April, the American Top Team product rebounded with wins over Bruce Connors, UFC veteran Diego Saraiva and Tachi Palace Fights featherweight champion Isaac DeJesus. The fight with DeJesus could have netted Miller championship gold, had he not weighed in over the 145 pound limit.
Givanildo Santana – “The Arm Collector” is the only fighter from the EliteXC promotion to make this list. He didn’t even fight on one of the organization’s major events, but rather on the ShoXC series, where he went 2-1 with his only loss coming via split decision against Jamie Jara. The 15-1 Santana might sport the most armbar-filled resume of any fighter ever, earning 12 of his wins via his trademark submission. That includes one stretch of 10 consecutive wins by way of the armbar between 2005 and 2008. His two wins in 2010 came over TUF 1 alum Lodune Sincaid and Strikeforce vet Anthony Ruiz.
Jesse Taylor – The man best known for blowing his chance on season seven of The Ultimate Fighter ended 2009 with losses to Jay Hieron and Luke Rockhold in Strikeforce. In 2010, the 17-6 Taylor headed north to Canada and down under to Australia. The international circuit treated Taylor well, as he went 4-1 on the year with his only loss coming against fellow UFC vet Thales Leites. Among his 2010 victims were former UFC middleweight champion Murilo Bustamante, UFC veteran Jason Day and prospects Tom Watson and Dylan Andrews.
Brock Larson – The 33-5 fighter was among the WEC’s top tier fighters at welterweight, but met up with disappointment once the division was absorbed by the UFC. After winning his first two bouts inside the Octagon, Larson dropped fights to Mike Pierce and Brian Foster to earn his pink slip. In 2010, Larson has remained busy, going 4-1 with bouts under the banners of Cage Fighting Xtreme, Shark Fights and King of the Cage. His lone loss of the year came against prospect Tarec Saffiedine.
Thales Leites – Leites found himself out of a UFC gig in 2009 after losing a title bout to Anderson Silva and a split decision in his next outing against Alessio Sakara. He was scooped up by the Canadian-based Maximum Fighting Championship and subsequently defeated Dean Lister in his first outing since parting ways with the UFC. In 2010, the 18-4 fighter picked up three wins and one loss. He was on the losing end of a rear-naked choke submission applied by fellow UFC vet Matt Horwich, but can boast wins over Jesse Taylor and Tor Troeng.
John Alessio – Since his last appearance in a major promotion – a 2009 submission loss to Andre Galvao in the opening round of the welterweight grand prix at Dream 8 – Alessio has strung together seven consecutive victories, including five in 2010. After seeing War Machine off to prison via rear-naked choke at Tachi Palace Fights 5 and advancing in the Ultimate Glory welterweight tournament with a submission win over Sergey Golyaev, the 31-13 fighter capped off a great year by claiming Tachi’s welterweight title with a TKO of Phil Collins in December. Next up for the new champ is a semifinal bout against Siyar Bahadurzada at the Jan. 30 Ultimate Glory event in Belgium.
Luis Santos – “Sapo” is 46-6 over his ten year professional career, yet has only made one appearance on the big stage. That outing came at WEC 34 in June of 2008 and ended in a first round corner stoppage loss for Santos. The loss was one of three suffered by Santos over a span of four fights. He has gone 9-1 since November of 2008 and is currently riding a five fight winning streak. In his most recent bout, he knocked out Ivan “Batman” Jorge in just 52 seconds.
Matt Grice – The 12-3 Grice only managed one win over four outings with the UFC from 2007 to 2009. Since parting ways with MMA’s top brand, Grice has tallied three wins in 2010, all by way of stoppage.
Travis Fulton – It’s interesting to note that the two other most active men to be mentioned in this feature, Ricco Rodriguez and Jeff Monson, are the only two fighters this year to notch victories over the man that makes their 2010 work schedules look brief by comparison. “The Ironman” deserves his moniker for a career mark of 245-47-10, but could merit the nickname just for his activity this year – he has gone 10-2 since the beginning of 2010, including a nine fight winning streak spanning the first four months of the year.
Danillo Villefort – The 12-3 American Top Team fighter has made one appearance each in the UFC, WEC and IFL, but has yet to find a stable home among the big shows. He only fought twice in 2010, but his second victory of the year came against Joey Villasenor. Villefort is 8-1 since 2007, with his only loss in that time coming in his sole Octagon appearance. He is currently riding a three fight winning streak.
Razak Al-Hassan – The 11-3 fighter will always be remembered for his refusal to tap even as his arm was bent in some very unnatural ways by Steve Cantwell at UFC’s 2008 Fight for the Troops event, but Razak has tried to erase the memory via a 4-1 run over 2010. Unfortunately, his most high profile fight of the year, against Dwayne Lewis at MFC 27 in November, ended in defeat, but Al-Hassan notched four stoppage victories prior to the loss.
Drew Fickett – The UFC veteran, who sports a record of 40-13, had a good year in 2010, going 4-0 with four submission wins. What might be more impressive, three of those victories came in a single night. After an April victory over UFC vet Derrick Noble, Fickett next signed up for the September Shine Fights lightweight tournament. Fickett would submit Charles “Krazy Horse” Bennett, Dennis Bermudez and Carlo Prater, all in the first round, to claim the tourney championship.
Delson Heleno – We included one EliteXC veteran, and now we’ll mention one IFL vet. The 20-5 Heleno is one of the most notable IFLers to fade back into obscurity after the promotion’s demise. Since dropping his final two IFL contests to Jay Hieron and Brad Blackburn, Heleno has rattled off seven straight victories, including three in 2010. His last outing, a unanimous decision win over Waachiim Spiritwolf, landed him the Art of Fighting welterweight crown.
Masakazu Imanari – The Pride and Dream veteran has reigned as the Deep bantamweight champion since 2008. This year, he went 3-0 to extend his current winning streak to five fights. However, his Deep crown was only on the line in one of those fights. The 21-7-2 Imanari sits amongst the top 25 bantamweights in the world, according to the USA Today/SB Nation Consensus MMA Rankings.
Every Friday, MMA DieHards will take a look – with video footage when possible – at the previous week’s action at small regional and international shows with a focus on UFC and Pride veterans, consensus-ranked fighters and up-and-coming prospects. Here’s what went down between Oct. 21 and Oct. 28:
Deep 50 Impact: 10th Anniversary Show (Tokyo; Oct. 24)
Returning to the promotion where he began his professional MMA career, Dream lightweight champion and No. 5-ranked lightweight Shinya Aoki (26-5) needed exactly one minute to secure a keylock for the submission win over former WBA World super flyweight boxing champion Yokthai Sithoar (0-1)…Dream veteran Katsunori Kikuno (14-3-2) successfully defended his Deep lightweight crown with a split decision victory over Pride veteran Nobuhiro Obiya (12-4-1)…Dream veteran Yuya Shirai (20-8) retained his Deep welterweight belt with a unanimous decision over Shigetoshi Iwase (10-13-3)…Dream veteran and No. 12-ranked bantamweight Masakazu Imanari (21-7-2) took home a majority decision over Dream veteran Daiki “DJ.taiki” Hata (11-8-3)…Deep light heavyweight champion Yoshiyuki Nakanishi (9-1) scored a first round TKO of Dream veteran Katsuyori Shibata (4-9-1) in a non-title contest…Pride and Dream veteran Ikuhisa Minowa (47-31-8) locked in an armbar to submit Chang Hee Kim (0-2) in the first round…WEC and Dream veteran Yoshiro Maeda (27-9-2) earned a majority decision over Dream veteran Takafumi Otsuka (10-7-1)…UFC and Pride veteran Ryo Chonan (18-11) scored a third round TKO of Jun Hee Moon (3-2)…Dream veteran Hidetaka Monma (17-9-4) needed just 67 seconds to secure an arm-triangle choke on Pride veteran Yoshihisa Yamamoto (14-23-1) for the submission win…UFC and Pride veteran Sanae Kikuta (29-7-3) scored a first round TKO, by way of corner stoppage, of Lee Sak Kim (0-1)…Hiroshi Nakamura (11-4-5) earned a unanimous nod over Tatsumitsu Wada (3-6-1).
Fussion Fighter 2 (Lima, Peru; Oct. 21)
Daniel Aspe (12-4) punched Gilliard Alfredo Fagundes (11-5) into submission just 68 seconds into the fight.
Heroes Gate 2 (Prague, Czech Republic; Oct. 21)
Shamil Zavurov (12-1) scored a first round TKO of Jaroslav Poborsky (14-24)…Ivan Buchinger (14-2) submitted Magomedrasul Khasbulaev (6-4) in the second round via rear-naked choke.
Abu Dhabi Fighting Championship: Battle of the Champions 2 (Abu Dhabi; Oct. 22)
Shamil Abdurahimov (11-1) advanced to the finals of the ADFC open weight grand prix with a third round TKO of UFC and Pride veteran Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou (9-8)…In the other open weight grand prix semifinal match-up, 2009 world grappling champion Marcos Oliveira (5-2) earned a unanimous decision over UFC veteran Neil Wain (8-3). Oliveira and Abdurahimov will meet in the tournament’s final sometime in 2011.
C3 Fights: Slammin Jammin Weekend 6 (Newkirk, Okla.; Oct. 22)
WEC and Bellator veteran Eric Schambari (14-2) submitted John Bryant (3-3) via arm-triangle choke.
Combat Zone 35 (Salem, N.H.; Oct. 22)
John Benoit (11-2) locked in a guillotine choke in the third round to submit Don Carlo-Clauss (6-3).
Midwest Cage Championships 29: Champion vs. Champion (Des Moines, Iowa; Oct. 22)
T.J. O’Brien (16-3), who will make his UFC debut at UFC 123, submitted Josh Henry (5-2) by way of a first round rear-naked choke submission…Rick Tasler (7-0) remained undefeated, needing just 71 seconds to score a TKO of Oscar Martinez (0-1).
ProFC: Union Nation Cup 9 (Nalchik, Russia; Oct. 22)
Maratbek Kalabekov (12-3) locked in a guillotine choke to submit Bahtiyar Arzumanov (1-1) in the second round…Mukhamed Aushev (12-4) earned a unanimous nod over Ramazan Emeev (0-1).
Tuff-N-Uff (Las Vegas; Oct. 22)
Nikki Rae Lowe (2-1 amateur) scored a TKO victory over Playboy model LaTasha Marzolla (2-1 amateur). The stoppage came just seconds into the fight when Marzolla dislocated her elbow.
Ultimate Cage Championships 4: County Carnage (Stockport, England; Oct. 22)
Ali Arish (7-0) maintained his spotless record with a first round rear-naked choke submission of Andrius Juska (0-6).
Caribbean Ultimate Fist Fighting: Inception (Cascade, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad; Oct. 23)
Sam Alvey (13-2) earned a unanimous decision over Luke Taylor (3-3).
Elite Promotions/Fight Time Promotions: Fight Time 2 (Pompano Beach, Fla.; Oct. 23)
UFC veteran and No. 25-ranked heavyweight Jeff Monson (38-11) locked in a first round armbar to submit UFC and IFL veteran Travis Fulton (199-47-10).
First Class Fight 5 (Sao Paulo, Brazil; Oct. 23)
Marcos Rogerio de Lima (7-0) kept his undefeated record intact with a unanimous decision victory over Pride veteran and No. 19-ranked middleweight Paulo Filho (20-2-1)…Alexandre Bezerra (8-1) secured a rear-naked choke in the first round to submit Luis Rogerio de Agostinho (2-3)…Shine Fights veteran Flavio Alvaro (28-8) scored a first round TKO of Samuel Quito (7-2).
Pancrase Fighting Championships: Challengers 2 (Marseille, France; Oct. 23)
Jerome Bouisson (7-0) preserved his unblemished record with a first round arm-triangle choke submission of Nicholas Bertolo (3-4).
Ring of Combat XXXII (Atlantic City, N.J.; Oct. 23)
Munah Holland (1-0) earned a unanimous decision over Strikeforce veteran Kim Couture (3-4).
Road FC 1: The Resurrection of Champions (Seoul, South Korea; Oct. 23)
Ui Cheol Nam (10-2-1) knocked Kota Okazawa (8-4-4) out…Woo Sung Yu (13-5) locked in a guillotine choke to submit Keigo Hirayama (10-9-5).
Turku Fight 2: Champions are Here (Turku, Finland; Oct. 23)
Tom Niinimaki (14-5-1) earned a unanimous decision over Dave Hill (9-1)…Jerry Kvarnstrom (8-1) locked in a first round armbar to submit Laimonas Stancikas (6-6).
Ultimate Challenge MMA: Unbelievable (London; Oct. 23)
TUF 9 alum Dean Amasinger (7-2) notched a unanimous decision over Jamaine Facey (6-5) to earn a shot at the promotion’s welterweight strap, currently held by John Maguire…In a UK-1 rules bout, UFC and Pride veteran Mark Weir (20-17-1 MMA) successfully defended his UK-1 middleweight title with a unanimous decision over Luke Sines.
Warrior-1 MMA 6: New Ground (Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; Oct. 23)
Strikeforce veteran and No. 11-ranked heavyweight Brett Rogers (11-2) took home a unanimous decision over Strikeforce veteran Ruben Villareal (18-19-3) in a fight that made Sherdog’s list of 10 October Tussles Worth Watching…Cesar Gracie disciple Roy Boughton (5-1) earned a unanimous decision over Strikeforce and Pride veteran Murilo “Ninja” Rua (20-11-1)…Roger Hollett (11-3) picked up a unanimous decision win over Strikeforce and Bellator veteran Mychal Clark (7-11)…Sean Pierson (10-4), set to make his UFC debut at UFC 124, scored a first round TKO of Ricky Goodall (6-4)…UFC and ShoXC veteran Douglas Evans (11-7) submitted Tristan Johnson (5-2) via rear-naked choke in the third round…Jeremy Hamilton (7-0) remained undefeated with a first round rear-naked choke submission of Chris Johnson (3-3).
Shooto: Gig Central 21 (Nagoya, Japan; Oct. 24)
Pride veteran Daisuke Sugie (10-7-1) earned a unanimous decision over Shin Kochiwa (7-2-2)…Seiji Akao (12-3) took home a unanimous decision over Shoki Omichi (1-2).
Every Monday, MMA DieHards takes a look at the upcoming week’s schedule of small regional and international shows with a focus on UFC and Pride veterans as well as consensus-ranked fighters. Here’s what’s going down between Oct. 18 and Oct. 24:
Spotlight Event: Deep 50 Impact: 10th Anniversary Show (Tokyo; Oct. 24)
Dream lightweight champion and No. 5-ranked lightweight Shinya Aoki (25-5) returns to the promotion where he began his professional MMA career to fight Muay Thai champion and former WBA World super flyweight boxing champion Yokthai Sithoar (0-0 MMA, 29-6-3 boxing)…Dream veteran Katsunori Kikuno (13-3-2) will put his lightweight title on the line against Nobuhiro Obiya (12-3-1)…Dream veteran Yuya Shirai (19-8) defends his welterweight crown against Shigetoshi Iwase (10-12-3)…Dream veteran and No. 12-ranked bantamweight Masakazu Imanari (20-7-2) meets Dream veteran Daiki “DJ.taiki” Hata (11-7-3)…WEC and Dream veteran Yoshiro Maeda (26-9-2) is scheduled to fight Dream veteran Takafumi Otsuka (10-6-1)…UFC and Pride veteran Ryo Chonan (17-11) battles Jung Hwan Cha (7-5-1)…Pride and Dream veteran Ikuhisa Minowa (46-31-8) takes on Chang Hee Kim (0-1)…Pride veteran Yoshihisa Yamamoto (14-22-1) goes up against Dream veteran Hidetaka Monma (16-9-4)…Pride veteran Akira Shoji (14-16-5) locks horns with Katsuaki Furuki (0-0)…UFC and Pride veteran Sanae Kikuta (28-7-3) squares off with Lee Sak Kim (0-0).
CES: Cage of Horrors (Mashantucket, Conn.; Oct. 22)
Bellator veteran and NAAFS lightweight champion Daniel Straus (14-3) goes to war with Magno Almeida (7-1) for the CESMMA lightweight championship.
Tuff-N-Uff (Las Vegas; Oct. 22)
Playboy model LaTasha Marzolla (2-0 amateur) returns to action against Nikki Rae Lane…The event will air live via pay-per-view internet stream at GoFightLive.
Elite Promotions/Fight Time Promotions: Fight Time 2 (Pompano Beach, Fla.; Oct. 23)
UFC veteran and No. 25-ranked heavyweight Jeff Monson (37-11) squares off with UFC and IFL veteran Travis Fulton (199-46-10).
Ring of Combat XXXII (Atlantic City, N.J.; Oct. 23)
Strikeforce veteran Kim Couture (3-3) is set to fight Munah Holland (0-0)…The event will air live via pay-per-view internet stream at GoFightLive.
Rumble at Thunder Tower (Elgin, S.C.; Oct. 23)
Olympic silver medalist wrestler Sara McMann (2-0 amateur) is scheduled to compete.
Ultimate Challenge MMA: Unbelievable (London; Oct. 23)
TUF 9 alum Dean Amasinger (6-2) meets Jamaine Facey (6-4)…UFC and Pride veteran Mark Weir (20-17-1 MMA) squares off with Luke Sines in a UK-1 rules fight for the UK-1 middleweight title.
Warrior-1 MMA 6: New Ground (Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada; Oct. 23)
Strikeforce veteran and No. 11-ranked heavyweight Brett Rogers (10-2) locks horns with Strikeforce vet Ruben Villareal (18-18-3) in a fight that made Sherdog’s list of 10 October Tussles Worth Watching…Strikeforce and Pride veteran Murilo “Ninja” Rua (20-10-1) is slated to face Roy Boughton (4-1).
Gladiator Challenge: Royal Flush (San Jacinto, Calif.; Oct. 24)
WEC veteran Manny Tapia (10-4-1) tangles with Sam Rodriquez (0-0)…TUF 5 alum Andy Wang (7-7-1), UFC veteran Wes Combs (16-4) and UFC veteran Aaron Brink (22-19) are also expected to compete at the event.
Extreme Fighting Championship Africa 5 (Johannesburg, South Africa)
Heroes Gate 2 (Prague, Czech Republic)
Annihilation 29: Rumble at the Pass (Trinidad, Colo.)
Combat Zone 35: The Rock 6 (Salem, N.H.)
Ground & Pound 13 (Toledo, Ohio)
MCC 29: Champion vs. Champion (Des Moines, Iowa)
Ohio Valley Fight Series: Face Your Fears, Live Your Dreams (Tallmadge, Ohio)
Trench Warz 13: Vengeance (West Beach, Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands)
Bobish’s Ultimate Cage Battles: Raging Bull (Parma, Ohio)
Caribbean Ultimate Fist Fighting: Inception (Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago)
Extreme Brawl: Ultimatum (Guildford, Surrey, England)
First Class Fight 5 (Sao Paulo, Brazil)
Gladiator Arena 2 (Pyrzyce, Poland)
Hardrock MMA 27: Rise of the Fantastic Four (Elizabethtown, Ky.)
Hot…Cold…Sweat: The Best of Both Worlds 7.2 (Charlotte, N.C.)
ICE 49 (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Impact Fighting Championship: Inception (Bismarck, N.D.)
Iron Will Fighting Championship 4 (Indiana, Pa.)
IT Fight Series (Springfield, Ohio)
Road FC 1: The Resurrection of Champions (Seoul, South Korea)
Rocktober Fightfest (Wilmington, N.C.)
Rumble at Raxx 9: Rumble Out West (Port Allen, La.)
Spitfire Fighting Championship (Jackson, Mich.)
Top Combat Championship: No Where to Hide (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
XFO (Johnsburg, Ill.)
Shooto: Gig Central 21 (Nagoya, Japan)
Every Friday, MMA DieHards will take a look – with video footage when possible – at the previous week’s action at small regional and international shows with a focus on UFC and Pride veterans, consensus-ranked fighters and up-and-coming prospects. Here’s what went down between Aug. 27 and Sept. 2:
Deep 49 Impact (Tokyo, Japan; Aug. 27)
Pride and Dream veteran Masakazu Imanari (20-7-2), the No. 13-ranked bantamweight in the world, successfully defended his Deep bantamweight title with a unanimous decision win over Dream veteran Tomoya Miyashita (17-8-8)…Dream and EliteXC veteran Riki Fukuda (17-4) retained his middleweight championship with a second round TKO of Pride veteran Ryuta Sakurai (20-16-6)…Pride veteran Hiromitsu Kanehara (18-23-3) fought to a draw with Young Choi (14-8-2)…Yasuaki Kishimoto (12-3-2) earned a unanimous decision over Yuki Ito (8-6-9)…Seiji Akao (11-3) took the unanimous nod over Sengoku veteran Ryosuke Komori (5-4).
Ring of Fire 39: Summer Brawl 2 (Denver, Colorado; Aug. 27)
UFC veteran and “TUF 8″ alum Eliot Marshall (8-2) made a triumphant return to the Ring of Fire promotion with a unanimous decision victory over UFC veteran and “TUF 3″ finalist Josh Haynes (13-11).
Nitro MMA 1 (Chandler, Queensland, Australia; Aug. 27)
Pride, Strikeforce and Dream veteran Daisuke Nakamura (22-12) locked in an armbar to submit Jai Bradney (9-5-1) in the first round…Michael Mortimer (12-3) secured a rear-naked choke in the first round to submit Edwin Arana (4-3).
Cage Contender 6: Nelson vs. Mitchell (Altrincham, Greater Manchester, England; Aug. 28)
Renzo Gracie black belt Gunnar Nelson (7-0-1) remained undefeated with a first round rear-naked choke submission of Danny Mitchell (8-2)…Norman Parke moved to 12-2 with a second round TKO of Stuart Davies (6-7).
Raging Wolf 9: Mayhem in the Mist 4 (Niagara Falls, New York; Aug. 28)
Strikeforce veteran Elaina Maxwell (4-3) earned the majority decision over No. 9-ranked 135-pounder and current Raging Wolf champion Alexis Davis (8-4). Maxwell missed weight, so the bout was a non-title affair.
Rural Rumble III (Fallon, Nevada; Aug. 28)
Buddy Roberts (9-2) submitted BJ Lacy (11-14-1) via first round rear-naked choke.
Vision Fighting Championship: The Beginning (Karlstad, Varmland, Sweden; Aug. 28)
Hamid Corassani (9-2) submitted Martin Begley (7-13) in the first round via armbar.
Shooto: Gig North 6 (Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan; Aug. 29)
No. 10-ranked flyweight Fumihiro Kitahara (9-1-1) locked in a rear-naked choke in the second round to submit Hiroyuki Tanaka (8-7-3).
Shoot Boxing: Girls S-Cup 2010 (Chiyoda, Tokyo, Japan; Aug. 29)
No. 3-ranked 145-pound female fighter Hiroko Yamanaka (10-1-1) needed less than two minutes to submit multiple-time Muay Thai kickboxing champion Sandy Furner (0-1) via forearm choke in the event’s only MMA bout. Yamanaka has actively campaigned for a chance to meet Strikeforce women’s 145-pound champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos….No. 2-ranked 115-pounder Mei Yamaguchi (6-2) competed in the Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup tournament, but lost her semifinal match-up by unanimous decision to Ai Takahashi. Takahashi went on to lose by unanimous decision to teenager RENA in the tourney finals. RENA claimed her second straight S-Cup championship with the win.