They say the Japanese loves to watch freak shows and Dream 9 will certainly be no different.
Dream announced that they will be holding an 8 man open weight tournament and that one of the contestants will be former MLB player and admitted steroid abuser Jose Canseco.
Other participants for the tournament that is scheduled to start at Dream 9 are Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, Bob Sapp, Jan Nortje, Hong Man Choi, Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa, Gegard Mousassi, and Mark Hunt.
Also on the card will be a rematch between Jason “Mayhem” Miller and Ronald “Jacare” Souza for the vacated Dream Middleweight title. Souza defeated Miller by unanimous decision during the Dream middleweight grand prix. Miller to this day is the only fighter who Souza has defeated to take the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt to the judge’s scorecards.
The tournament will be called the “World Superman Championship” and will feature the following first round bouts. Choi vs. Canseco, Mousassi vs. Hunt, Sapp vs Minowa and Sokoudjou vs. Nortje.
Canseco claims to be an accomplished mixed martial artist and is coming off two celebrity boxing matches. He lost via knockout to former NFL running back Vai Sikahema and he also battled former Partridge family member Danny Bonaduce to a majority draw.
Choi is best known for being submitted by Fedor Emilianenko on new year’s eve in 2007 and he also lost to Mirko “Cro-Cop” Filipovic this past new year’s eve.
Mousassi was the winner of the Dream middleweight grand prix but has decided to vacate the title and compete as a light heavyweight.
Sapp has been a huge draw in Japan for years whether he was fighting for Pride or for K-1.
Hunt also made his name fighting for K-1 and recently lost to Melvin Manhoef.
Sokoudjou made a huge splash when he knocked out both Ricardo Arona and Antonio Rodrigo Noguiera in the first round of their bouts under the Pride banner. He was picked up by the UFC but went 1-2 and was released. He was last seen being choked out by Renato Sobral at an Affliction event in January.
Nortje is 2-5 in his MMA career with his biggest win coming over Sapp at a Strikeforce event in February of 2008.
Minowa has been around since 1996 and has 79 bouts in his MMA career.
Also on the card will be the second round of the organization’s featherweight grand prix featuring Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto taking on Joe Warren and in a lightweight tilt Gesias “JZ” Calvacante will battle Tatsuya Kawajiri.
Here is the full card for Dream 9:
Gesias “JZ” Cavalvante vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Jason “Mayhem” Miller (for vacant middleweight title)
Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto vs. Joe Warren - Featherweight Grand Prix
Bibiano Fernandes vs. Masakazu Imanari- Featherweight Grand Prix
Yoshiro Maeda vs. Hiroyuki Takaya – Featherweight Grand Prix
Abel Cullum vs. Hideo Tokoro – Featherweight Grand Prix
Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa vs. Bob Sapp – World Superman Championship
Jan Nortje vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou – World Superman Championship
Mark Hunt vs. Gegard Mousasi – World Superman Championship
Jose Canseco vs. Hong Man Choi – World Superman Championship