Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Takimoto trains Muay Thai

Makoto Takimoto invited press and showed his training with Lamsongkram Chuwatan who is a current WBC Muay Thai Middleweight champion. Chuwatan said he came to Yoshida Dojo to be a sparring partner of Yoshida and Takimoto.

Takimoto said, I know Cyborg attempts to KO me. I train both ground and standing techniques equally and I have a confidence I can manage his punches. I haven't thought about my game plan yet, but I won't tell even if I had one.

Sakuraba's gym opens in April

Kazushi Sakuraba opens his first official gym "Laughter7" on April 1st.

Chonan got an offer of his next fight

Ryo Chonan updated his blog

I got a call from my manager about my next fight this afternoon. What a coincidence! I wonder if someone who works for the UFC read my blog yesterday? I'm going to accept a fight with any fighters, so I think I can officially announce my next fight sometime soon. I am motivated to train for my next fight!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Chonan is ready for his next fight

Ryo Chonan updated his blog.

I'm looking forward to seeing Dan Henderson vs Anderson Silva on Sunday. I heard Dan trained with Snake who is from France and famous in DEEP and PRIDE. I have sparred with Snake who is taller than Anderson and has the long reach. I will get his knee when he lift his knee lightly. I think Dan chose a good training partner for his next fight because I suppose Snake has stronger strikes thank Shogun. I think Dan has a chance to win.

Next week, I will see fights of Yoshida and Takimoto in Sengoku. I train with them and I see one reason they got medals in Olympics. Their ability to concentrate is extraordinary. They are type of people who can do better in their actual performance. I cannot wait to see their fight and join in a party after their fight.

On Mar 9, Hiroki Ishii fights for a belt of Super Light Weight in Magnum 16 organized by Shin Nihon Kick Boxing. I hope he conditions well and he becomes a champion.

I suppose you say I'm so easy going to watch fights of other fighters. I actually want to know when my next fight is. I went to Thailand for Muay Thai training to keep my motivation up. It's sucks that I'm not injured but have no fight schedule. I know PRIDE light weight fighters were very patient last year.

My friend in the US talked to the UFC staff and told me that they offer me a fight sometimes soon. I haven't fought for a while and have no money. I cannot wait anymore, and decided to go to the US for 6 months from the middle of April.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Mach is having his first charity event

Hayato "Mach" Sakurai updated his blog.

I am going to produce my first charity event, "Mach Matsuri" in Ushiku sports park in Ibaragi on Apr 06. The capacity of this arena is 3000. Tickets are all 1000 yen. I will have an exhibition fight and please come and visit. For ticket information, please call Mach Dojo at 0297-39-3966.

Gomi updated his website

From Gomi's official website..

It's getting warm and I cannot wait until spring comes. Spring is the season of graduation. At the same time, it's an energetic time for many people to start and challenge something new.

Japanese MMA news now talk about Sengoku and DREAMS. They compare both events and have interviews of fighters. I enjoy reading interviews because it's good to know about thoughts, goals and situation they had when they made decisions. I have good energy from other fighters because they train hard to achieve goals even if we fight in different events.

I wonder why interviewers often ask fighters questions coming from the thought of Sengoku vs. DREAM. I suppose they believe the composition of Sengoku vs DREAM will attract more people. Fighters focus on training and their opponents. They train hard everyday under huge pressures and they have no time to think about other fighters and other events now. It's good for Japanese MMA to get more attention, however, I cannot cooperate with MMA magazines all the time, especially right before my fight.

I was so lazy that I didn't fight at all last year. I'm back and fight in the very first event in 2008. I'm going to change my entrance music. You will find out on Mar 5.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

What Japanese fans think about Mirko

Mirko Crocop had an interview with a Croatian paper which translation was posted on sherdog.  In a Japanese discussion forum, people talk about Mirko and M-1.

- Dana White is smart.  If Mirko fights Fedor and wins, Dana definitely takes Mirko back to the UFC and makes money having his fights.  If Mirko loses in DREAM, the UFC will just say goodbye to Mirko without hesitating.  The UFC won't lose anything by letting Mirko fight in another MMA event.

- I think it's impossible to have Mirko fight Fedor this year.  What we want to see is a fight between Fedor and Couture and M-1 is working on arranging it.  I cannot believe the UFC has debts because it seems they are doing a good business and even cooperate with Yahoo. 

- I think M-1 breaks before having their debut event.  A fight between Fedor vs Mirko is more realistic than Fedor vs Couture?

- DREAM is again doing silly business by not having written contracts but only having verbal contracts.  People who are on the side of DREAM were bashing Sengoku because they of their verbal contracts with fighters, however DREAM does the same thing.  Sengoku should learn from the experience with Baroni.  (Baroni announced to fight in IconSport in Hawaii on Mar 15, 3 days before he announced to cancel fighting in Sengoku due to his injury.)

- I don't think a fight between Mirko and Fedor is realistic.  Fedor has no reason and will see no  benefit fighting Mirko who lost in the UFC.  Mirko needs to prove himself before asking him to fight.  Mirko is famous and popular, however he is obviously not good enough to fight Fedor.

- I think Mirko lost in the UFC and needs to win at least 2 times in DREAM.  If he wins, he maybe get a chance to fight Fedor.

- I wonder why the verbal agreement is popular in Japan.  I cannot imagine why.  It is not necessary to have contracts which tie fighters and are only beneficial for the UFC.  I think written contracts are essential to avoid a case like Baroni, who quit in last minutes.  Mirko definitely needs to win 3 times in a row for sure.

- Even if Mirko defeats Fedor and other good fighters in Japan, he looks not a strong fighter in the UFC.  I think he doesn't have an ability to defeat anyone in Octagon.  He needs to train with someone who have a lot of experience fighting in the UFC.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Misaki talks about turning over of the decision

Yarennoka turned over the decision and announced that the fight between Akiyama vs Misaki was a no contest. Misaki had kept silent since then and finally opened up and talked in public on Feb 21.

- What do you think about turning over the decision?
I have no hard feelings and just accept their announcement. I was satisfied with showing my fans my fight against Akiyama in Yarennoka.

- What do you think about your soccer ball kicking? Do you think that was a foul play?
Nobody can clearly say that was foul play or not now. I think God makes the fight no contest and I accept his decision.

- What do you think about Tanikawa criticizing your contract with Sengoku?
I wonder why. I shouldn't say anything about that misunderstanding, but I suppose Yarennoka didn't tell him about my contract clearly and correctly. I have never betrayed before and won't in my future. I'm not an unfair person and won't be. I chose Sengoku because I think that's the right way to move on.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Gomi had an interview with Kamipro

Takanori Gomi had an interview with a Japanese MMA magazine, Kamipro No 120.

- You finally announced your next stage to fight. Can I ask about your 2007?
I don't want to recall my past.

- You are a well-known fighter and many people were wondering where you fight next and I heard many rumors.
I know some publications talked about me because they expected a lot from me. I answered to their question honestly. However, I couldn't tell anything about my contract before I signed up.

- How did you feel while you were working on negotiating with many events?
I had a normal life and did what I could do at that time. I trained in my gym. I wasn't sure if I wanted to fight last year. I knew my fans wanted to see my fights and I appreciated their support though. I took a break and that was what I needed.

- You went to watch the UFC live last year.
I didn't want to stay in Japan and wanted to go somewhere for fun. That's all.

- Did you feel uncomfortable staying in Japan on NYE? I guess because many people were curious and asked how you felt?
No, not like that. I fought in front of a big audience in Saitama for past several years on NYE, and I had parties with staff and friends after fights. I was at a loss when I thought about watching MMA event on TV alone at home on NYE. I missed the countdown with thousands of MMA fans in Saitama Super Arena. The UFC event was great and I even thought about fighting there. I like fans in Saitama though. I felt NYE in Saitama was more energetic and powerful than the UFC.

- You decided not to fight in the UFC. I heard Dana White said Gomi chose Sengoku because of the money.
I didn't know that.

- He says negative things about fighters who didn't sign up with him.
Well, I felt I prefer watching the UFC to fighting there. It is definitely amazing to travel to Las Vegas, enjoy gambling and watching the UFC with hot girls. I would like to go and see the UFC again. So, I will keep in touch with Dana White to get a free pass.

- Did you watch Japanese MMA events?
Yes. I mostly watched the middle weight fights. I fast forwarded some parts and didn't watch full fights though.

- Did you imagine you fought either in Yarennoka or in Dynamite?
If I fought in those events, I wanted to fight J.Z. Calvan because he was a champion. I wasn't ready to fight and I didn't want to have a fight which disappointed my fans. Eventually, J.Z. cancelled his fight.

- Did you get any offer to fight J.Z.Calvan?
Nope. If I fight someone, then I probably choose to fight J.Z.. I went to see HEROS last summer and thought nobody could stop him. It seemed like HEROS fighters didn't want to fight him and fans in that event even felt same way.

- That's why you wanted to fight him?
It was kinda strange for me to challenge him though.

- Yes, you are the PRIDE champion, too!
Oh well, it is true that I defeated Mach Sakurai in front of the audience, but I feel like that belt is not valid anymore. That's why I want to challenge in a new place.

- Don't you have your belt with you?
I have it in my house. I don't know where to return it even.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Akira Maeda produces a new event "THE OUTSIDER"

Akira Maeda announced that he will produce a new event called "THE OUTSIDER" and dropped off being a supervisor of HEROS. This event is for amateur fighters who believe they are the strongest and will have HEROS rules and 20 fights. He would like to send fighters who have good records to DREAMS. Tanikawa (FEG) promised to give fighters in this new event opportunities to fight in DREAMS. Now "THE OUTSIDER" is taking applications.

KID Yamamoto Interview with HEROS

HEROS official website posted the interview of Norifumi "KID" Yamamoto. HEROS had an interview with him right before the press conference of DREAM on Feb 13.

- Could you tell me about your fight against Rani Yahya on NYE?
I'm satisfied with that fight. I kept my pace without giving him chance to do anything.

- Yahya threw punches though?
I knew he came to take me down though he couldn't make a tackle. So, he decided to throw strikes. He didn't have other choices. I got to know how to handle that kind of fighter.

- I said you didn't like fighting Jujitsu specialists, and now you have a counter-plan for them?
Yes. I think I don't have any problem fighting them for now. I could have a good experience on NYE.

- Did you get confidence by defeating Yahya who is the WEC Bantam Weight champion?
Yes. That's why I would like to fight champions.

- Your fight got the highest rating of the television program.
Thanks. I'm glad to have a great fight for my fans.

- You could finish the end of 2007 by winning and your gym, Krazy Bee, is expanding and doing good business.
Yes, my gym is getting bigger and my students got more motivation. My students fight in DREAM.

- Are you talking about Kotetsu Boku? What do you think about DREAM?
I really think making an alliance is great. It's better to work together for fans and fighters. Fans can see more exciting fights and MMA will be more popular at the same time.

- What kind of performance would you like to do?
Just do like I have done in HERO'S. I could make the HERO'S light weight exciting. I would like to put more energy in our new event and want to give opportunities for young fighters.

- The light weight class doesn't have a tournament this year.
I don't even know other fighters in my class. I will fight fighters who I fought before and show good fights. Then, more fighters will sign up with this event.

- What is your resolution of this year?
My resolution is not to get injured. I don't think I will though. I want to continue winning.

- Do you show us KO'ing your opponents?
Absolutely. I'm highly motivated fighting in the new event.

- Any message to your fans?
I think Japanese MMA will be amazing from now on because 2 big organizations combined into one. Thank you for supporting me and I will do my best.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Monteiro's interview from the Sengoku Ofiicial Site

Fabricio "Pitbull" Monteiro interview from the Sengoku Official Site posted on Feb 15.

- What do you think about Sengoku?
I think Sengoku will be the best MMA event in the world. I hope I can be a champion in Sengoku.

- What do you think about your opponent, Nick Thompson?
He is a very strong fighter and that's why he is a champion of Bodog.

- Tell me about your fight plan.
I think our fight will be a great fight no matter what. I have been ready to fight him. I did my best preparing for this fight. My fight will be an unforgettable fight for my fans.

- What do you want to show your fans?
I want to show how aggressive I am. I had very hard training to be aggressive.

- Who would you like to fight in Sengoku?
I want to fight champions. I always enjoy a big fight!

- What would you like to achieve in MMA?
I want to be a champion and I believe my dream comes true in Japan.

- Any message to your fans?
I trained really hard to show a tremendous fight. Please come and see my fight, and let's celebrate my victory!

Thompson interview from the Sengoku official site

Nick Thompson's interview was posted on Feb 14.

- What do you think about Sengoku?
I think Sengoku will be a No.1 MMA event, because this event is held in a county which people understand MMA the most, and has top MMA fighters. I'm very honored to be a part of this event.

- What do you think about your opponent, Fabricio "Pitbull" Monteiro?
He has great techniques and he has defeated tough opponents before. His score is 16 won and 6 lost now and it will be 16 won and 7 lost on Mar 6.

- Tell me about your fight plan.
I imagine I will take a mount position and pound him. I know my Japanese fans support me and cheer me up.

- What do you want to show your fans?
I always aim at TKO victory or KO victory and I did it in last 10 fights.

- Do you have any fighters you want to fight in Sengoku?
I want to fight good Japanese fighters like Mach Sakurai.

- What would you like to achieve in MMA?
I have only one thing in my mind now. It's to be a champion in Sengoku.

- Any message to your fans?
I'm excited to fight in Japan, and you will be enthused watching my fight. I will do my best.

Barnett`s interview

Barnett's interview from the Sengoku official site posted on Feb 10.

- What do you think about Yoshida?
I have trained with him before and he is one of my close friends. I'm excited to fight him in Sengoku to be honest. We will enjoy fighting for sure. He is a great fighter and has a great personality as well. I will do everything I can do to win and I know that what he wants from me. I will do my best to KO him.

- What do you think about Sengoku?
I know GOKU means extreme. Our fight will be extreme.

- Could you tell me your fight plan?
3.5 min. per round is very short amount of time to finish him. I would like to have an amazing main event. I will be aggressive from the beginning and want to finish as quick as I can.

- What do you want to show your fans?
I know our fans expect a lot from me. At the same time, I always keep my mind on having exciting fights to satisfy them, because I'm a professional fighter. I would like to have an impressive fight which is transmitted by everybody including MMA fans, and which my students can learn from.

- Who would you like to fight in Sengoku?
I will fight any strong fighters. I would like to fight Roger Gracie because I want to defeat the Gracie family? I would like to fight a lot as a belt holder of Pancrase.

- Any message to your fans?
Thank you for always supporting me. I'm glad to have a chance to fight in Japan again. Please come to the event and be witnesses of a new MMA history.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Yoshida interview ~ My fight will be really exciting ~

Yoshida's interview which was posted Feb 10 on the Sengoku official website.

- What do you think about your opponent, Josh?
I respect him and consider he is one of top fighters in the world. He is an well rounded fighter who is good in a ground position as well as in a standing position. I have to be careful of getting his submission techniques including leg locks. He is definitely a tough opponent. I think Josh always has exciting fights and his fights attract fans. I believe we will have an amazing fight.

- What do you think about Sengoku?
It is a brand new event. All fighters and staff of this event will work together to succeed. I will do my best to make this event attractive for young fighters.

- Any prediction for your fight?
I have trained with him before and I know pretty well about his fighting style, but it is hard to say what he does in our fight. I haven't decided if I wear gi or not. I know I have a risk easily getting his leg locks when I wear gi. I know fans want to see me in gi though. It is hard decision to make.

- What do you want to show your fans?
I would like to show my fans my aggressive fighting style. Josh always tries to entertain his fans like I told you earlier. I will try to fight aggressively by maintaining my fighting spirit well. I think a fighter who has a strong mentality will win this fight and I don't thinks this fight will be boring.

- Who else do you want to fight?
I would like to fight any strong fighters.

- Any message to your fans?
I would like to have an exciting fight to attract fans to this new event. Thank you for supporting me.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Baroni and Kikuta don't fight on Mar 05.

Sengoku announced on Feb 12 that Phil Baroni cancelled his fight on Mar 05 because he injured his right shoulder while he was training.

Sengoku considered to look for a new opponent for Kikuta. On Feb 13, they decided to not let him fight on Mar 05 but will in their next event. The reason why Sengoku made this decision is Kikuta isn't in a good condition anyways because he has old wounds damaged by training. Sengoku figured out to let him fight whenever he is in the better condition.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Yoshida & Gomi trained together

Hidehiko Yoshida and Takanori Gomi trained together at J-ROCK workout studio on Feb 15.

Gomi asked him to train together. After they trained 2 hours from noon, they let press in and showed their training a bit. Gomi seemed as though he very much enjoyed and was satisfied with this opportunity. Gomi said, Yoshida was his idol for more than 10 years and he was honored to fight in the same ring with him. After Yoshida asked Gomi not to flatter him, he said Gomi is a lot lighter than himself, however, he felt his power and strength of his body.

It is less than 3 weeks before their fights in Sengoku on Mar 5. Yoshida said, it is wasting his time thinking too much. I do what I can do now to win. He trains with a hero of Ssireum, Lee Tae Hyun, and prepares for the fight with Josh who has good grappling skills.

Gomi focuses on the striking in the training. He said he will start running and check all the ground techniques and prepare for his fight. He also said he is going to exchange punches and won't lose by strikes.

After training, Yoshida said he really enjoyed training with Gomi and would like to do this again to develop their skills. Gomi said this is his first time to train outside of his gym in last year and a half. He could mainly train Judo techniques and would like to train there again. He said he felt Judo specialists must be tough opponents for him.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

K-taro said I continue fighting!

K-taro Nakamura updated his blog.

I'm sorry I don't update my blog often. I'm still in the U.S. and stay in Albuquerque. It is very rural. I will watch the fight of Takatani tomorrow.

In my fight, I was too late to put my switch in and I was too relaxsed. I would like to be energetic from the beginning if I have another chance. I wonder if I get a call from the UFC? I guess I won't hear from them again. I would like to fight again soon! I don't retire.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

New Japanese MMA event, DREAM, press conference (3)

Other comments in the press conference

- Mirko has a contract with the UFC?
Sasahara: I cannot tell you anything about his contract. I think he has no problem fighting in DREAM.

- Why did you approach Mirko?
Sasahara: We were looking for heavyweight fighters who are good and famous. We had a chance to talk to Mirko.

- You don't have a weight class for KID?
Sasahara: I'm going to have another light weight class which KID can fight in.

- HERO'S has a meaning of Road to Dynamite!. What are you going to do with Dynamite?
Tanikawa: DREAM will also have the same meaning. We haven't decided what we are going to do with Dynamite yet and what kind of NYE event we are going to have though.

- Does the HERO'S supervisor and PRIDE & Yarennoka Spokesman work with you?
Tanikawa: Takada and Maeda won't be involved with DREAM.

- Any conflict with Sengoku?
Sasahara: We don't produce any of their event. We talked to Sengoku and found out we have a different concept and figured out we cannot work with them. We are not fighting each other though.

New Japanese MMA event, DREAM, press conference (2)

** Interviews of fighters in the press conference **

Daisuke Nakamura:
I believe this is one of the top level MMA events. I would like to train hard and do my best.

Ryuki Ueyama:
I'm glad to fight in this event. I would like to be a world champion this year.

I like the name of this event, DREAM. I would like to be stronger and show great fights for my fans and staff.

Yoshihiro Akiyama:
I can tell this event will have great fights and dream matches. I would like to fight for my fans.

Norifumi KID Yamamoto:
I think this is cool event and will do my best showing great fights for my fans. Don't forget my birthday is Mar 15.

Hayato Mach Sakurai:
I'm in MMA for quite a while and have been punched for a long time. I don't fight in the tournament, but I will fight a lot next year.

Shinya Aoki:
I'm honored to fight in the new event. I'm also happy that my fight is announced in this press conference. I would like to win by having a top level fight.

Kazushi Sakuraba:
Like the very first Dynamite, I would like to cooperate with other fighters and event staff and give dreams to my fans. Thank you for supporting us.

Royce Gracie (video)
I'm happy to hear about this new event. Since FEG, the biggest MMA organization in Japan, and the staff from another big event work together, I know the event will be successful. I hope I can fight in DREAM and show my style and techniques. I'm glad to see MMA, which history was built up by the Gracie Family, is now about to develop more by FEG and the former PRIDE staff. I cannot wait to fight in DREAM. I will be back!

Mirko Cro Cop Filipovic:
I'm very happy to fight in Japan again and very excited. Please come and see my next fight on Mar 15. I will do my best supporting this new event. Many people will consider I come back to Japan because I couldn't win in UFC, but it is not true. I'm going to go back to UFC someday and have a good result. I determined that DREAM is the right place to build my career for now. I wanted to fight in Japan again and I don't like fighting in the cage to be honest. Japan is my secondary home country. I have recovered from the damage I took by loosing in UFC , so I would would like to have great fights for my fans.

New Japanese MMA event, DREAM, press conference (1)

New Japanese MMA event, DREAM is announced in Tokyo Metropolitan Hotel on Feb 13.

At first, Tanikawa(FEG), Karino(TBS) and Sasahara(Yarennoka!) appeared on the stage.

Tanikawa said:
Thank you for coming today. I heard more than 300 fans were here today and I appreciate that. We were a success with our new years events, K-1 Dynamite and Yarennoka! with the support and understanding of TBS. FEG would like to start a new MMA event to keep our alliance with Yarennoka! Our new event is not PRIDE nor HERO'S. Though the sponsor of the event is FEG and TBS, Yarennoka is going to produce the event. Mr. Sasahara will take the initiative as the event producer. I'm going to focus on K-1 events including K-1 World GP and K-1 World Max. Japanese MMA didn't have energy for a while. It's time for us to stand up together and work on the new event which attracts fans.

Sasahara said:
We worked on Yarennoka in the last NYE together. We were supported by FEG, M-1 Global and many other people. After having the successful event, I knew Japanese MMA was still popular and had a potential to attract more fans. Though we dropped a hint of having a next event at Yarennoka, we didn't have any direction to move next. I got an offer from Mr. Tanikawa and took his offer because I could be in charge of producing this event. I got signatures from more than 3000 fans asking us to continue Yarennoka and to create a great event. Passion from our fans stimulated me to create an event which MMA fans were satisfied.

Karino said:
We sponsor and broadcast K-1, HERO'S and Dynamite. We are excited about broadcasting DREAM which is the replacement of HERO'S.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Fighters like Suzanne...

Gono talked about Suzanne in his blog.
My right hand is still in pain.  I'm having hard time sleeping and I am up 20 hours though I cannot move around and do what I want to do.

I got a message from my friend about the magazine, Playboy.  He recommended for me to go and get it because the photographs of Suzanne are really good.  I freaked out imagining having to walk 2 min. to the store.  Under the terrible pain I walked unnatural and that brings more pain.  What can I get by getting through this?  It's Suzanne's photograph which I have never seen and I want to see.  I took 500 yen and decided to go.

I felt dizzy, but I made it to a store and came home.  I drank an after workout protein drink as usual and put the playboy on the table.  I was satisfied seeing this magazine.  I wish I could enjoy more if I could use my right hand...

Gomi also talks about Suzanne in his blog...
I'm tired and would like to go drinking but I have to wait till my next fight is over.  I took a day off from training and went to watch a movie, American Gangster.  Although my fight is coming soon, I cannot stop thinking about Suzanne in the playboy magazine.  I hope the movie is violent enough to kick Suzanne out from my head.  

Kazuyuki Fujita chose Sengoku

WVR announced that Kazuyuki Fujita signed up with Sengoku and he would fight on Mar 05.  Fujita is now training at the Marco Ruas Dojo in Los Angeles for his next fight.  His opponent will be announced shortly.  

Fujita's comment:
I picked Sengoku from several offers.  I would like to fight aggressive and not give up.

Gomi fights Duane Ludwig.

WVR had a press conference in Tokyo on Feb 13 and announced opponents of Takanori Gomi and more.

Gomi fights Duane Ludwig who defeated Kozo Takeda in K-1 Max and Genki Sudo in UFC.  Gomi said he would like to KO him by striking.

WVR also announced 2 more fighgs, Ryokawamura vs Antonio Braga Neto and Fabricio "Pitbull" Monteiro vs Nick Thompson.

Monday, February 11, 2008

New Japanese MMA event will be announced on Feb 13

FEG and Yarennoka! staff joined hands and created a new MMA event.  They have a press conference on Feb 13 in Tokyo and will announce the details of the event, including the event name, an overview and the event schedule of 2008.  Not only Japanese fighters but fighters from other countries will appear at the conference.  Fans are also welcomed to come and see the conference starting at 5 PM in Metropolitan Hotel in Tokyo.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sakuraba continues fighting...

Kazushi Sakuraba trained with his friend, Mr.Shimoyanagi who is a Japanese baseball player.  They have trained together for the last 5 years.  Shimoyanagi is now 39 years old and still plays as a pitcher with the Tigers.  His goal is to keep playing until he is 45 years old.  Sakuraba said he would like to fight longer than him.

Thought after the surgery: Gono

Akihiro Gono updated his blog and talked about his condition on Feb 10.

My operation went well and I left the hospital yesterday.  I hope I recover soon.  It was a 5 hours operation, cutting a part of bone in radius and transplanting it in my right hand.  I have never been so tired and feeling destroyed like this time.  It was extremely tough operation and I am having the worst pain ever after the operation.  I almost gave up and ran away from everything.  Although, I have nothing to do but fighting , so I continue to being MMA fighter.  

I couldn't sleep well because my right hand is in pain even if I take pain killer pills.  I realized how hard to do everything by my left hand.  I want to get married so bad now.  I'm 33 years old and this is my first time to dream about getting a wife.  I want someone who is attractive and respectful.  I should be competitive to be chosen by my dream girl though. 

Anyway, thank you for supporting me and my operation went well.  After dinner, I will study English which is a part of my project to be an attractive guy.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Takada talks about Yarennoka!

Takada had an interview with the Japanese MMA magazine, Kakuto Tsushin.  

- Any thoughts about Yarennoka!?
I feel like that event was held a long time ago.  I cannot believe it is only a month since NYE.  Don't you think so?  That was a really dramatic event and I wonder if I was dreaming or saw an illusion. 

- You said Yarennoka! was the last event of PRIDE.  Did you think you created a good finale?  
I think so.  I believe there are many people who still believe PRIDE will come back someday.  I understand their feeling because Yarennoka! mentioned the possibility of their future event at the end.  I am, however, sure that PRIDE is over and there is no another event which has PRIDE style.

- Any comments to Japanese fighters?  I got an impression Aoki had a hard time.
I say Aoki was confused not only about his opponent but fighting in a very last fight in that event.  I believe he will be tougher by getting through that experience.  I was impressed to see Kawajiri`s fight.  He had a great performance by showing his strength and passion.  He never hesitated to fight aggressively.  I thought Ishida trained well and developed his performance by showing his takedowns, but I consider Melendez had the fighting spirit of top fighters, he tried to finish by punching.  

- I think that was tough fight though?
He did what he could do not to lose and he dragged Melendez into his fighting style.  He controlled the fight by blocking Merendez's move.  As a top fighter he had to perform more exciting fight.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Sakurai video interview

Here is the interview video of Sakurai with HDnet in Yarennnoka.  
What he is saying in this interview is he always fights champions again and again.  This is me doing some translation!  Sorry for the messed up video at the beginning.  

Gono is going to be hospitalized

From Gono's blog.

I'm going to go hospital.  I'm having surgery every year in last 5 years and this is my 11th in my life.  Whenever having a surgery with the general anesthesia, I will lay on an operation table with a thin surgery uniform.  So not to be ashamed of being seen by anybody, I built my muscles before the surgery.

I trained as much as I could and am ready for the post surgery environment.  Now I go hospital by taking the train this morning.

Gomi updated his blog

Takanori Gomi updated his blog.

I was revived after announcing my next fight.  I'm excited to do anything whenever I have something to put my heart into.  My old teammates and my friends came back to support me and even K-taro called me.

I didn't have any goal last year.  I believe I needed a year to move on to the next step.  I have my friends around me now and I will enjoy spending time with my friends after fights.  I have many things I want to do now, but I'm saving them until my next fight is over.  So now I just read books in my free time.  

I enjoy fighting and the moment I'm fighting in the ring is the happiest moment for me.  My 2008 starts from there on Mar 05.  I cannot wait!  Enjoy your 2008!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Okami talks about UFC 81

Yushin Okami updated his blog and talked about his impression of UFC 81.
After I trained punching at the gym during the day, I went home and watched UFC 81.

Minotauro was terrific.  That sweep was artistic.  I was amazed to see his mental strength and his submission techniques.  I found a lot to learn from his fight.  I was also surprised to see how quick Sylvia gave up and tapped out though.  It seems the American style.  

Lesnar, he was a monster!  His physical ability was tremendous.  I heard that he was a huge but super fast, and he was an athlete who has speed and power.  I cannot wait to see his next fight.  I felt sorry for K-taro.  His fight was good.  His combination of the punching and the tackling was perfect.  I should get those movements.  I look forward to seeing his next fight.  Almeida was strong too.  I would like to fight him near the future.  

I see many middle weight fighters now in UFC.  I have to keep training to do a good job.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Aoki is preparing for his next fight.

Shinya Aoki updated his blog.  

He had a meeting with his tights` designer, tatsuzawajapan,  for his next fight.  He has not announced where he fights next but there is a rumor that he fights in HERO`S.  

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Yoshida vs Barnett in Sengoku on Mar 5

WVR had a press conference about the MMA event, Sengoku on Mar 5, and announced that Hidehiko Yoshida fights Josh Barnett.  

Yoshida's comment:
This is a great match and an appropriate main fight for the debut event of Sengoku.  I hope this will be an exciting and unforgettable fight.  Barnett is a strong and the most well known fighter in Japan comparing to my other candidates.  Thought I didn't chose to fight Barnett, I felt a fight against him would have a big impact and be a good fight.  This launching event is key if Sengoku can continue having more great fighters in the future.   Whether I win or not, I feel I have a responsibility to attract audiences and increase MMA fans by having a terrific fight.  I train boxing every other day and work on other striking techniques as well.  He is a tough opponent for me but I'm doing my best preparing for this fight.  Barnett is heavier and taller.  I didn't feel he was bigger than me by that much and the size difference won't be a disadvantage.  I won't announce if I wear gi or not till Mar 05.  I won't forget the spirit as a challenger.  

Barnett`s comment:
I could not fight last year, not because I was injured, but because I didn't have my home ring.  I'm glad to announce that I fight in Sengoku and am lucky to fight Yoshida in a main event in this very first event.  He is a well skilled Judo specialist who is willing to learn techniques other than Judo.   Judo and Catch Wrestling are long time rivals.  This is my 3rd time to fight a Judo specialist and would like to show something new and would like to surprise audiences.  I signed up to fight with Naoya Ogawa in IGF on Feb 16.  I will fight Yoshida even if I'm injured.  I haven't decided yet if I have another fight in Sengoku.  I will decide based on the result of my first fight.  

Naoya Kinoshita, the president of WVR, said he is considering to hold a championship fight or a championship tournament this year.

Friday, February 1, 2008

What's Genki Sudo up to?

Genki Sudo is now filming a movie named R246STORY. His movie is a short movie.  Five other artists make short films based on the same theme, Route 246, and make a 1 omnibus movie. He writes, produces and plays in this movie. This movie will be released this summer. Also, his other book will be at stores in the end of Feb.