A couple of guys that know a thing or two about Japanese MMA will meet in the octagon. One is a former pound-for-pound great that is looking for a career resurgence, and the other has left his JMMA political problems behind and will look to make his UFC debut a memorable one. Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto (18-4, 1 NC, 0-1 UFC) meets Darren Uyenoyama (6-3, 0-0 UFC) in a bantamweight bout at UFC on Fox 1.
Neither fighter is currently ranked on the USA Today/BE Consensus Rankings, though either of them could easily crack the list with a couple of solid wins. This bantamweight UFC on Fox fight will be on the preliminary card, which will be streamed live on Facebook. The Facebook stream begins at approximately 4:45 p.m. ET/1:45 p.m. PT.
How do these two stack up?
Yamamoto: 34 years old | 5'4" | 66" reach Uyenoyama: 32 years old | 5'6" | Unknown reach
Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto is a superstar in Japan and despite being very undersized, he was a top lightweight in K-1 Hero's a few years ago. A serious knee injury and marijuana scandal put him on the sidelines for all of 2008, and he's never been quite the same since. He's gone just 1-3 in the last 3 and a half years, and lost his only UFC fight by decision to Demetrious Johnson back at UFC 126 in February. He's a very skilled fighter, but does he have another run left in him? A win over Uyenoyama would be a great start.
Darren "BC" Uyenoyama is a veteran of Strikeforce, DEEP and Dream and probably first got a lot of attention for an excellent bout with Hideo Tokoro at Dream 4. His biggest win was in his last bout, as he defeated then-Shooto featherweight (132 lb) champion Shuichiro Katsumura by TKO in a non-title bout. Shooto never followed through with their promise of a title shot or a bout with Masakatsu Ueda, and left Uyenoyama in limbo for a long time over the situation. Finally he gave up and made his way into the UFC, and this bout with Kid.
Why should you care?
It's a pretty good style matchup. Uyenoyama is an excellent grappler who can hang on the feet, and Yamamoto is a very good striker with good takedown defense. Who will blink first?
More UFC on Fox preview coverage from Bloody Elbow after the jump.
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