UPDATE: Results are in from the DEEP 66 Impact show in Tokyo.
To get us started, we have former UFC lightweight Mizuto Hirota (15-7-1), who took a unanimous decision victory over Daisuke Nakamura (27-15-0). Hirota became highlight fodder for Shinya Aoki following a horrific shoulder break, which forced the former Sengoku champion to sit out for over a year and a half. Soon after his return, however, Hirota was picked up by Strikeforce, where he lost his lone fight (a dubious decision loss to Pat Healy) before being absorbed into the UFC. Hirota was cut following his loss to Rodrigo Damm last summer. He rebounds nicely with this win over Nakamura, who is himself a former Pride, Dream, and Strikeforce competitor.
A minute and a half into his fight, former Sengoku contender Masanori Kanehara received a disqualification loss to Toshiaki Kitada (16-7-4). Kanehara went 4-3 during his time with Sengoku, which included victories over a Michihiro Omigawa and Kid Yamamoto. He is also the last man to defeat Chan Sung Jung prior to the Korean Zombie's Zuffa career. With the loss, Kanehara sees a six-fight win streak come to a halt, and his record falls to 23-11-5.
Elsewhere on the card, former WEC and Dream bantamweight Kenji Osawa (20-11-2) squared off with Takafumi Otsuka (17-12-1) for DEEP's vacant 135-pound championship. After three rounds, Otsuka took the upset victory by unanimous decision. Osawa--who went 1-2-1 in the WEC--loses his first fight in three years.
Current DEEP featherweight kingpin Kazunori Yokota (20-5-3, 5-4 Sengoku) successfully defended his title with a unanimous decision victory over Katsunori Tsuda (8-3-1). Since the dissolution of Sengoku and his move to DEEP in 2011, Yokota has won eight in a row with a healthy mix of submission, TKO, and decision wins. His hot streak comes at a time when the UFC is planning a return to Japan in September.
And finally, Satoru Kitaoka (33-13-9) rebounded from a knockout loss last New Year's Eve with a unanimous decision over Naoto Miyazaki (10-3-3). Between 2008 and 2009, Kitaoka installed himself at the top of the food chain in Sengoku, winning the promotion's lightweight grand prix, becoming the inaugural 155-pound champion, and handily submitting Takanori Gomi. Victories over Kuniyoshi Hironaka, Willamy Freire, and Katsunori Kikuno highlight his post-Sengoku career. Perhaps his most high-profile fight in the last few years, however, was at Dream 18, the promotion's last event, where he succumbed to strikes in the second round against Will Brooks--a fight that put the American on the radar. Kitaoka is 3-1 since 2013.
Original post below...
Huge action in the Octagon this past Saturday, and an extremely busy weekend on the regional circuits to match. Plenty of UFC veterans to be had and the sensational Melvin Manhoef made his return. Plus, coming by way of a mid-week update, results featuring an array of former Sengoku, DREAM, and Pride fighters, who'll be going to work early in the a.m. Tuesday, if you set your watch by Gary, Indiana time (and who doesn't?). Let's jump in.
This Friday, at Dynasty Combat Sports 7, TUF veteran Abe Wagner (11-7-0) scored a first-round KO of Rob Mitchell (4-4-0). Wagner was featured on The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights, where he was, from a field that included Roy Nelson, inexplicably picked second by coach Quinton Jackson. With the exception of an 0-2 stint in Bellator, Wagner has plied his trade in the Dust Bowl circuit, most notably knocking out Tim Sylvia in half a minute back in 2011. His win over Mitchell snaps a three-fight losing streak.
Meanwhile, in Slovenia, well-traveled Dion Staring put the americana to Tomaz Simonic (4-4-0) for the first-round victory. At this point, the former Strikeforce heavyweight is most familiar from his fight with Daniel Cormier, in which he was brought in as a sacrificial lamb for the newly-crowned Grand Prix champ. However, Staring had had a wide-ranging career before then, including fights with Rogerio Nogueira and, some damn way, with current UFC featherweight Akira Corassani. With the win on Friday, Staring improves to 30-10-0, and 2-2 since his abbreviated Strikeforce career.
Melvin Manhoef! More Melvin Manhoef! The wrecking machine known as "Marvelous" and "No Mercy" squared off with former nemesis Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos on Saturday in a much-anticipated rematch that somehow wound up under the banner of something called Gringo Super Fight. A scant 46 seconds after the opening bell, Manhoef's uppercuts from hell forced the referee to beg "please, sir, if it's at all possible, with all due respect, could you find it in your good heart to maybe cut this guy a break," which was a request Manhoef kindly granted. With the victory, Manhoef pulls himself out of a two-fight skid and improves to 28-11-1 (1 NC), while Santos falls to 19-16-0.
And, at the other end of the spectrum, we have presidential write-in candidate Jacob Volkmann (17-5-0, 6-4 UFC), whose methodical performances and groan-inducing post-fight interviews saw him cut from the UFC at pretty much the first opportunity despite a 6-2 run at lightweight. Volkmann must have been feeling the Manhoef vibes, though, because he scored the first official TKO of his career on Saturday. The win, which came against Danny White (8-4-0), improves Volkmann's post-UFC career to 2-1, which includes a pair of 2013 bouts with World Series of Fighting.
Volkmann vs. White is here.
Also on Saturday, former UFC bantamweight Motonobu Tezuka (20-8-5, 0-2 UFC) fought to a majority draw against Kensaku Nakamura (13-5-4). Tezuka is 1-2-1 since his return to the Japanese regionals.
And in Sao Paolo's Xtreme Fighting Championship, Waylon Lowe (14-6-0, 2-2 UFC, 0-1 Lubricant) dropped a split-decision to Marcos dos Santos (22-11-1, 1 NC), who is now on a 15-fight win streak. Lowe is now 4-2 since his 2011 departure from the UFC.
Finally, at West Coast Fighting Championships 9, UFC veteran David "Daudi" Mitchell (14-4-0) continues his march back to the limelight with a first-round submission of Jaime Jara (36-16-0, 1 NC), himself a veteran of EliteXC (2-1) and Bellator (0-1). Mitchell exited the UFC following a decision loss to prospect Yan Cabral, bringing his promotional record to a dispiriting 1-4. Mitchell is, however, undefeated in his career outside the UFC, which includes wins over Bobby Green and War Machine, and he's now up two since he was cut from the big show.