UFC 162 results recap: Norman Parke vs. Kazuki Tokudome


TUF Smashes winner Norman Parke took on former Pancrase lightweight Kazuki Tokudome in the 3rd bout of the UFC 162 FX card.

It appears that the UFC wants to bring Norman Parke along slow, as one of their few notable faces from the British Isles. He was given the task of taking on relative unknown Japanese brawler Kazuki Tokudome as his first bout post TUF competition. It was a good bit of matchmaking for two raw fighters who will need quite a bit of seasoning before competing with the higher echelons of the lightweight division.

Parke came out strong with a well targeted combination of wrestling (Parke is the most decorated Wrestler to come out of Britain in the UFC) and right hands. Tokudome's complete lack of head movement and defensive footwork left him constantly open to getting hit hard, and he did. However, whether it was due to a lack of power on Parke's part or Tokudome's incredible chin, or (as is likely) some combination of the two, Tokudome appeared largely unfazed. He rallied late and took the third on every score card but the judges to lose a unanimous decision. Norman Parke def. Kazuki Tokudome via Unanimous Decision.

What was the high point?

Tokudome's toughness. True to the Japanese budo spirit, Tokudome took all kinds of punishment to come back and get his own late. It may be that he has a higher upside than Parke long term, if he can learn to fix his defensive gaps. If he can't his time in the UFC will be short lived, but exciting.

What was the low point?

Everything else. It's always a little disappointing to watch a fighter deliver an ineffective beating. As a watcher it gives very few reasons to be excited about either Parke's or Tokudome's future. Parke should have had this fight easily given the dominance he showed early, that he didn't raises major question marks about his long term potential.

Where do they go from here?

For Parke, a win is a win ultimately. They can give him Renee Forte if they want to put him on the TUF track, or Adriano Martins if they want to give him another solid, but winnable fight. Either one would be a good test to see exactly where he is right now.

I don't expect the UFC to get rid of Tokudome he's 1-1 with the promotion and Japanese fighters often get a lot of leeway if they can win a bit. He definitely needs a step down in competition though and I think Mike Rio or Vinc Pichel would be just the fighters to give it to him.

Watch it now, later, or never?

Watch it never. Not the worst fight I've seen, but ultimately a tedious affair that showed us next to nothing about either fighter. Hopefully it's a learning experience for one or both of them, but as they still have a lot to learn I'd give it a miss.

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