It’s become tradition in Japan to hold the final event of 2011 and this year is no different, although this could be the biggest Japanese New Years Eve event ever.. Coming to us live from the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, it’s Fight For Japan: Genki Desu Ka Omisoka 2011. As always, Five Ounces of Pain will provide complete results along with a fight recap of all the live televised action.
The event, which is scheduled to last nine hours, kicks off at 1AM EST on HDNet.
DREAM: New Years Eve 2011 will be headlined by Fedor Emelianenko making his return to Japan to take on Olympic Gold Medalist in Judo, Satoshi Ishii. Also on the card, lightweight submission expert Shinya Aoki defends his DREAM lightweight title against top contender Satoru Kitaoka. Plus the bantamweight Grand Prix wraps up as Bibiano Fernandes meets Rodolfo Marques Diniz while Antonio Banuelos takes on Masakazu Imanari with the winners squaring off in the finals.
Yusup Saadulaev vs. Hideo Tokoro
Fight Recap: Tokoro came out with a flying knee, but Saadulaev caught him and took him down. After a scramble, Saadulaev got the back standing, picked him up, and slammed him on his forehead. Tokoro went out cold and after a couple more strikes, the ref stopped it. Brutal ending.
Result: Yusup Saadulaev def. Hideo Tokoro via KO Round 1 (Slam)
Antonio Banuelos vs. Masakazu Imanari
Fight Recap: Banuelos had a tough time finding his range in the first round as Imanari kept his distance with body kicks. Every time Banuelos pressed forward, Imanari moved away and even dropped to his back in order to bait Banuelos to the ground. Banuelos did show off a good sprawl in the round though. In the second round, Imanari was able to pull guard after eating a couple of punches, but Banuelos escaped to his feet. Imanari got the fight to the ground again and tried to work his guard game, but Banuelos shut it down and landed some short punches. In a great grappling exchange, Imanari swept Banuelos, went for a leg lock, but Banuelos escaped and got back on top. Banuelos ended the round on top and landing short punches. Decent fight that should go to Banuelos, who was more active in all positions. Neither guy took much damage though.
Result: Antonio Banuelos def. Masakazu Imanari via Split Decision
Rodolfo Marques Diniz vs. Bibiano Fernandes
Fight Recap: The first round started off hot with both guys trading low kicks, but then Fernandes got a takedown and grinded out the round with elbows to the thighs and punches to the body. Fernandes controlled the second round as well, landing some good counter strikes, defending the takedown, and controlling the clinch. Not the most exciting fight ever but Fernandes got the job done with his striking and took almost no damage.
Result: Bibiano Fernandes def. Rodolfo Marques Diniz via Unanimous Decision
Masaaki Noiri vs. Kengo Sonoda (kickboxing match)
Fight Recap: Sonoda was the busier of the two fighters in the first round, but Noiri was the more accurate. Both fighters showed good defense though. Sonoda landed a good push kick in the second round and then got inside nicely, despite being the shorter fighter. Noiri was awarded a knockdown after landing a flying knee but it looked more like Sonoda just got tangled up with Noiri as he was coming down. Noiri really attacked the leg of Sonoda in the third round, finishing almost every combo with a leg kick. Noiri ended the fight with a jumping round kick and a front kick to the face. The third round was the most decisive and it went to Noiri. A very action packed K-1 fight that Noiri should win.
Result: Masaaki Noiri def. Kengo Sonoda via Unanimous Decision
Yuta Kubo vs. Nils Widlund (kickboxing match)
Fight Recap: Kubo controlled the pace in the first round and landed some stinging kicks. Widlund couldn’t really get anything going outside of some counters that didn’t have much behind them. Kubo really picked apart Widlund in the second round, landing almost everything he threw, including some vicious body kicks. Kubo also showed some tremendous defense, avoiding almost everything Widlund threw. Kubo punished the body of Widlund with knees early in the third round and then dropped him with a head kick. Widlund couldn’t answer the 10 count, giving the win to Kubo, who looked extremely impressive in victory.
Result: Yuta Kubo def. Nils Widlund via TKO Round 3 (Head Kick)
Ryo Chonan vs. Hayato “Mach” Sakurai
Fight Recap: Sakurai scored an early knockdown in the first round and landed some good ground and pound. Sakurai controlled the majority of the first round on top but didn’t do a ton of damage. The second round was more of the same as Sakurai got an early takedown and stayed busy on top with short punches. Chonan had some success on the feet with the right hand, but couldn’t stay upright long enough to really get his striking going. Chonan finally had some success in the third round, letting his hands go and out-boxing Sakurai. With about a minute left though, Chonan went for a flying knee and was taken down. Sakurai punished Chonan with knees to the body before getting reversed into guard as the round ended. Sakurai should take the decision based on the first two rounds.
Result: Hayato Sakurai def. Ryo Chonan via Unanimous Decision
Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Kazuyuki Miyata
Fight Recap: Kawajiri got an early takedown in the first round and methodically worked towards mount. Kawajiri nearly locked up an arm triangle in the final minute but Miyata was able to survive to the end of the round. Dominating round for Kawajiri. Miyata started the second round well, landing some good strikes, but Kawajiri once again got the takedown. This time Miyata was able to get up though, and even put Kawajiri down, gaining the back before Kawajiri was able to escape. Kawajiri got a late round takedown, locked up the arm triangle again, and this time forced Miyata to tap out with just seconds remaining in the round. Great grappling performance by Kawajiri.
Result: Tatsuya Kawajiri def. Kazuyuki Miyata via Submission Round 2 (Arm Triangle)
Karla Benitez vs. Megumi Fujii
Fight Recap: Fujii got the fight to the ground by diving for a leg and more or less pulling guard. Once of the ground, Fujii easily out-grappling Benitez, gained top position, and locked on an armbar for the victory. Another quick win for Fujii.
Result: Megumi Fujii def. Karla Benitez via Submission Round 1 (Armbar)
Josh Barnett vs. Hideki Suzuki (pro-wrestling match)
Fight Recap: Barnett controlled the early portion of the match, coming out on top of all the grappling exchanges and working over the ankle, but Suzuki changed the momentum with a suplex. Barnett regained control with a half crab into and STF, but Suzuki got the ropes. Barnett hit a chicken wing suplex and continued to work over the ankle of Suzuki, who did a nice job staying near the ropes. Barnett kept looking for submission attempts but Suzuki always had an escape. Barnett hit a sit out powerbomb but only got a 2 count. Suzuki hit a Ruff Ryder to counter an exploder suplex but went for an armbar instead of a pin. Barnett escaped and eventually hit the BRAINBUSTAH~! for the three count. Both guys worked hard and did a lot of grappling and submission attempts, none of which really played into the pinfall finish. ***
Result: Josh Barnett def. Hideki Suzuki via Pinfall (Brainbuster)
Yuichiro Nagashima vs. Katsunori Kikuno (mixed-rules bout)
Fight Recap: The first round was kickboxing, which is Nagashima’s specialty. Kikuno poured it on him though, landing power hooks over and over again while avoiding the strikes of Nagashima. Kikuno knocked down Nagashami, but Nagashami got up before the 10 count. Nagashami came back and knocked down Kikuno, but Kikuno got up before 10. These two just swung for the fences for the entire 3-minute period and it was pretty awesome. The second round was MMA. Kikuno got a takedown but Nagashima got up. Kikuno slowed down on the feet, allowing Nagashima to take over. Kikuno got the back and dragged Nagashima to the ground. Kikuno got the back mount, flattened out Nagashima, and pounded away until the referee finally stopped it. Well, it was a hell of a fight for what it was.
Result: Katsunori Kikuno def. Yuichiro Nagashima via TKO Round 2 (Punches)
Antonio Banuelos vs. Bibiano Fernandes
Fight Recap: Both men traded some good strikes early but Fernandes was clearly the quicker and more accurate striker. Fernandes caught Banuelos with a punch that wobbled and dropped him. Fernandes immediately pounced on him, stood in the guard, and unleashed a brutal barrage of ground and pound that forced Banuelos to give up his back, where Fernandes continued to pound away until the ref stopped it. Great performance by Fernandes.
Result: Bibiano Fernandes def. Antonio Banuelos via TKO Round 1 (Punches)
Jerome Le Banner vs. Tim Sylvia (pro-wrestling match)
Fight Recap: JLB wore boxing gloves, making it tough for him to really do any grappling in this match. Sylvia kept scoring with takedown, but JLB got the ropes in order to get the stand up. JLB unloaded with a series of liver and leg kicks before dropping Sylvia, securing the back, and pounding out Sylvia to force a referee stoppage. This was more like a scripted MMA fight than it was a pro wrestling match. DUD.
Result: Jerome Le Banner def. Tim Sylvia via TKO (Strikes)
Peter Aerts vs. Kazuyuki Fujita (pro-wrestling match)
Fight Recap: Like JLB, Aerts wore boxing gloves. Fujita rushed in and got hit with a combo ending with a head kick. Aerts went for the cover but Fujita kicked out and rolled to the outside. Back in the ring, Aerts continued to use his striking. Fujita ended up hitting a big powerslam and then went for a boston crab, but extended too far back, causing him to fall backwards. Aerts just tapped as Fujita tried to re-establish the hold. They completely botched the finish. DUD.
Result: Kazuyuki Fujita def. Peter Aerts via Submission (Boston Crab)
Atsushi Sawada and Shinichi Suzukawa vs. Kazushi Sakuraba and Katsuyori Shibata (pro-wrestling match)
Fight Recap: A lot of open hand slapping by both teams early. Sakuraba got frustrated with his opponents constantly grabbing the ropes during his submission attempts, so in a comedy spot, Sakuraba just stayed against the ropes even when he was standing. More slap boxing and rope grabbing from both teams. The road agent laid out this match poorly, no man is bothering to sell, and every tag has been a blind tag. The end came when Shibata drop kicked Sawada in the face and then Sakuraba locked on a rear naked choke. Suzukawa tried to make the save, but Sakuraba no sold the kicks and Sawada tapped out. Sakuraba held the choke long after the tap and after the match, Sawada tried to attack Sakuraba with a chair. They really screwed this match up. Sawada/Suzukawa should have got the heat on Shibata, Sakuraba would then get the hot tag, run wild, and get the victory. * because Sakuraba was awesome.
Result: Kazushi Sakuraba & Katsuyori Shibata def. Shinichi Suzukawa & Atsushi Sawada via Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Hiroyuki Takaya vs. Takeshi “Lion” Inoue
Fight Recap: Takaya was the aggressor on the feet in the first round but Takeshi moved away well and avoided the big punch. Takaya landed some good kicks, but Takeshi countered with good straight punches. Takaya remained the aggressor and scored with a takedown late in the round. Good first round for Takaya, who landed the cleaner strikes and got the takedown. Takeshi started working his jab in the second round while continuing to avoid the power of Takaya. Both men landed in flurries, but Takeshi was the more accurate striker. Takaya got another late round takedown, but didn’t have enough time to do anything. Takeshi seems to be wearing out Takaya with his movement and counter punching but Takaya could be stealing rounds with his aggression, he is connecting every now and then, and he’s getting takedowns. Takaya got an early takedown in round three and landed some decent ground and pound, but really landed the best punch when Takeshi scrambled up. Takeshi kept using the jab while Takaya pressed forward with power punches and leg kicks. Takeshi is countering well but isn’t landing in volume like Takaya. The fourth round was more of the same with Takaya applying pressure and landing power hooks while Takeshi only threw a jab and the occasional counter right. Takeshi was given a yellow card in the fourth for lack of action. Takaya really turned it up at the end of the fourth, rocking Takeshi with some big punches. More of the same in the fifth and final round although things seemed to slow down. Takaya moved forward with punches while Takeshi only moved away and threw jabs. Takeshi finally let his hands go in the final few seconds, but it was too little too late. A good performance by Takaya and an underwhelming performance by Takeshi. Takaya should take the decision.
Result: Hiroyuki Takaya def. Takeshi Inoue via Unanimous Decision
Shinya Aoki vs. Satoru Kitaoka
Fight Recap: Aoki got an early takedown, escaped a guillotine attempt, and beautifully transitioned into a triangle/armbar. Kitaoka managed to escape though and get back to his feet. Kitaoka landed a good right on the feet but Aoki again got the fight to the ground. Aoki controlled things on the ground for the rest of the round. Strong round for Aoki. Aoki got an early takedown in the second round and then spent the majority of the round on top until the ref stood them up. Aoki landed a series of good kicks before once again getting a takedown at the end of the round. Again Aoki got an early takedown in the third and then got the back of Kitaoka. Aoki tried to work for the submission but Kitaoka showed good defense and managed to escape. Aoki threw some head kicks as the round ended, but Kitaoka blocked them. In the fourth round, Aoki damaged and broke the nose of Kitaoka with knees in the clinch before dragging the fight to the ground and getting the back. Aoki worked extremely hard to finish with the rear naked choke but Kitaoka managed to fight out of it every time and somehow survive the round. Kitaoka came out swinging in the fifth but Aoki clinched up, got another takedown, and got the back again. Kitaoka again managed to escape but anytime he got to his feet, Aoki usually got him down. Kitaoka stuffed one final takedown and landed some knees to the head, but they were too little too late. Dominating performance by Aoki.
Result: Shinya Aoki def. Satoru Kitaoka via Unanimous Decision
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Satoshi Ishii
Fight Recap: Fedor throwing his usual bombing punches but Ishii covering well. Ishii looks very tentative on the feet. Fedor connected with a couple of straight right hands that wobbled Ishii. Fedor finally ended things with a quick flurry that dropped Ishii and put him out cold. Fight went about as expected, but credit to Fedor for putting him away.
Result: Fedor Emelianenko def. Satoshi Ishii via KO Round 1 (Punches)