Join us tonight on Bloody Elbow for live results and detailed play-by-play as UFC Fight Night: Barnett vs. Nelson takes place from the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
Battle-hardened heavyweights Josh Barnett and Roy "Big Country" Nelson headline the show while middleweights Gegard Mousasi and Uriah Hall fill the co-main slot. Also on the main card: top flyweight Kyoji Horiguchi meets Roufusport's Chico Camus, bantamweight stalwart Takeya Mizugaki draws George Roop, the unorthodox Katsunori Kikuno squares off with Diego Brandao and, in the UFC: Road to Japan finals, Mizuto Hirota battles Teruto Ishihara.
Live results and play-by-play will commence with the Fox Sports 2 preliminary card. The full lineup and schedule follows. Check out this week's MMA Vivisection for analysis and fight picks on the entire card.
UFC Japan Main Card (Fox Sports 1, 10 p.m. ET)
R1: Barnett flings a few jabs from southpaw, twice ducking Nelson's big right hand. Barnett digs a left high kick to the body and Nelson surprisingly changes levels and hits a takedown. Nelson working in Barnett's open half guard. They stalemate and are separated at the halfway mark.
Barnett, still in southpaw, throws another left body kick before clinching up and battering Nelson with a barrage of knees. Nelson looks to escape but Barnett locks horns and brings more knees. Nelson separates and the same sequence repeats only Barnett lands another left body kick on his entry. Nelson gets the body lock and can't get the takedown, but succeeds in stifling Barnett and putting him on the fence. The outside trip is there for the patient Nelson, who grounds Barnett with just over a half-minute left. Nelson in half guard and nearly passes to mount. 10-9 Barnett for effective striking.
R2: Nelson hurls the big right-handed meatball early but Barnett dodges it. Nice straight one-two from Nelson. Barnett lands an inside low kick and Nelson answers with an uppercut. Barnett scores with a punch, then perfectly times a counter knee to the body. Sharp left hand gets through for Barnett, then Nelson clocks him with the right. Barnett stays on the trigger and follows a few punches into the clinch where he bombards the body with more knees.
Barnett with some rights to the body and effective dirty boxing in the clinch. Short elbow lands for Barnett. Nelson answers with a knee. Barnett returns the favor, keeping Nelson against the cage. Two short uppercuts lands for Nelson. Barnett fires back two uppercuts and lands a knee to the body. A constant barrage of elbows and knees from Barnett in the clinch before separating. Nelson uncorks a high kick that glances, then does the same with an overhand right. Barnett reattaches in the clinch and grinds away with more knees, then a few foot stomps. 10-9 Barnett.
R3: Barnett opens with a clean right uppercut. Nelson clinches with a body lock and puts Barnett on the fence. Knee to the body for Nelson, then a few short ones to the thighs. Nelson with a vice-lock body lock and a steady hum-drum of knees to the thighs before they're separated. Barnett, still in southpaw, follows his one-two into the clinch to land another knee to the body.
Nelson circles off the fence and drops for a double, then switches to a single, both to no avail. Barnett clinches again and bobs Nelson's head back with an uppercut. Counter right off the back foot glances for Nelson. Barnett clinches and lands another uppercut. Nelson fires back with a right hook that lands, then gets in on a single leg. Barnett keeps his balance and Nelson walks him back to the cage. Nelson hoists Barnett with a single leg but Barnett stays upright, then ends the round with another body kick and clinch knee medley. 10-10.
R4: Barnett opens with a left high kick but his front kick is nearly caught by Nelson. Barnett keeps moving forward, punching his way into the clinch. Two knees to the body land hard for Barnett, prompting Nelson to pursue a single leg. Nelson finishes it but Barnett immediately reverses and they end up back in the clinch. Nasty horizontal elbow from Barnett blasts Nelson in the teeth.
Two uppercuts land for Barnett, who steps back and unloads a flurry with both hands. Nelson, his back still on the fence, fires back a combo. Barnett cleaves to the face with another horizontal elbow, then follows with two more. Nelson grabs a single leg and finishes it; Barnett counters with a leg lock and Nelson hops on his back but can't hold position. Nelson keeps Barnett on the cage with a single leg, then looks to hoist him with it. Barnett's base is too wide and he stays upright. The ref steps in with a minute left to separate them. Barnett continues his high volume of dirty boxing in the clinch and it might be wearing Nelson down. 10-9 Barnett.
R5: Barnett lands a spinning back kick to the body. Nelson answers with a right kick that slams into Barnett's midsection and it draws a smile from both competitors. Barnett puts Nelson on the cage and continues to chip away with knees, elbows and uppercuts. Barnett is ceaseless in the clinch, firing left and right elbows while peeling off Nelson's wrist control.
Nelson fires back with an elbow and an uppercut. Barnett with a knee downstairs and it prompts Nelson to shoot for a double leg, but he only succeeds in putting Barnett's back on the fence. A few foot stomps from Nelson, then he turns the corner and finishes the body-lock trip. Barnett looks for the kimura but settles for the escape when he can't get it. They separate and Barnett marches right after Nelson to resume his clinch bashing. They're separated with 40 seconds left. Nelson lands a pair of rights downstairs and Barnett answers with a left body kick. Then another. Nelson clubs him with a right just before the bell sounds. Big hearts shown by both fighters in a highly respectable contest. 10-9 Barnett. I have it 50-46 Barnett.
Josh Barnett defeats Roy Nelson by unanimous decision (48-47 x2, 50-45)
Gegard Mousasi vs. Uriah Hall
R1: Mousasi shrinks the distance early and grabs a single leg, finishing it. Hall on his back within the opening 30 seconds. Hall tries to work his guard but Mousasi slices into half guard, then side control. Hall escapes just as Mousasi is poised for a mount pass, recomposing his full guard. Mousasi is quickly back into half guard and finagling an arm triangle.
Hall defends the choke but Mousasi slithers into full mount. Hall explodes his hips out again but this time looks for a leg lock. Mousasi alleviates the pressure but Hall nearly turns it into an inside heel hook. Full of more surprises, Hall isolates an arm and nearly gets a kimura. Mousasi patiently works out, then takes Hall's back in the transition with the body lock cinched. Mousasi wrenches the mata leao but can't get underneath the chin. 10-9 Mousasi.
R2: Mousasi closes the distance quickly again but Hall starches him with a spinning kick to the face. Mousasi stumbles back and Hall vaults forward in mid-air, clipping Mousasi with a flying knee. Mousasi tries to tie up as Hall swarms with punches but the ref jumps in.
- Uriah Hall defeats Gegard Mousasi by TKO (punches) R2 0:25
Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Chico Camus
R1: Horiguchi draws first blood with a body kick. Now a counter left off the back foot for Horiguchi. Horiguchi's counters are on point throughout the first few exchanges. No dice on Horiguchi's single-leg attempt. Camus is able to tie up with Horiguchi and put him on the fence but can't keep him there. The same process repeats. Camus sneaks a right hand in, then glances with another.
Lead left grazes for Horiguchi. Glancing left high kick for Horiguchi. Horiguchi counters Camus' clinch with a knee to the body. Camus catches Horiguchi on the end of two lefts. Left body kick for Horiguchi. 10-9 Horiguchi.
R2: Camus comes out swinging rights but he gets caught with a hefty right hand from Horiguchi that stuns him. Horiguchi with a clean one-two. Camus is game and still throwing leather back in the pocket. Front kick lands to the body for Horiguchi. Camus off-balances him briefly. Horiguchi's speed, footwork and angles are proving to be too much for Camus, who can't read his rhythm.
Retreating left uppercut lands for Horiguchi. Camus answers with a jab. They trade clean shots again. Horiguchi's movement is keeping him on the right side of most exchanges though Camus valiantly continues to pressure with aggressive combos. 10-9 Horiguchi.
R3: Horiguchi persists with his unpredictable offense, retreating to glance with a right and then lunging forward with a level change. Camus, bleeding from his right eye, continues to engage. Horiguchi still dictating the exchanges with machine-like poise. Horiguchi clinches up on a Camus combo but can't hold position.
Two right body kicks score for Horiguchi. Camus glances with a left counter to Horiguchi's lead elbow. Horiguchi with a nonstop ensemble of pivots, circles and crisp counters. Horiguchi lands a high kick and stuns Camus with a punch but Camus fires back and lands clean. 10-9 Horiguchi. I have it 30-27 his way.
- Kyoji Horiguchi defeats Chico Camus by unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
R1: Mizugaki glances with a short right, then rushes Roop with both hands flying. They clinch and Roop circles Mizugaki onto the fence. They trade knees to the body and Mizugaki circles off the fence. They split. Roop throwing long kicks from range that Mizugaki looks to counter with movement and punches. Mizugaki scores with a right downstairs, then one upstairs. Roops sneaks in a right hand before clinching.
Mizugaki circles Roop onto the fence with a body lock. Mizugaki lands a right and Roop a knee to the body before they separate. Mizugaki barges into range and lands a right hand. Now Roop initiates the clinch but ends up with his back on the fence. They separate. Mizugaki with two right hands as Roop's coming in. Another right hand after they split from the clinch. 10-9 Mizugaki.
R2: Mizugaki jams a Roop high kick and pops him with a right. Roop clinches but eats a knee to the body. Roop is curiously content to stay entangled with Mizugaki in the clinch, and he separates after failing on a double leg. He re-engages Mizugaki but charges into another right hand. Roop separates long enough to throw a high kick, then clinches up again.
They separate and Mizugaki again slips inside a Roop high kick to pop him with a right. Roop lands a low kick and a nice right hand. Mizugaki answers with a right. Roop follows a one-two/high kick combo into the clinch, then separates. They both land right hands. Roop switches to southpaw but eats a Mizugaki right. 10-9 Mizugaki.
R3: Mizugaki leads with a left to the body. Roop lands a right hand and forces a clinch, then separates. Outside low kick for Roop before his grab-and-release clinch strategy. This time Roop steps back with punches but ducks under Mizugaki's counters to half-complete a double leg; Mizugaki pops back up. Heel kick to the body from Mizugaki in the clinch.
Roop tries to set up another double leg but Mizugaki easily stuffs it. Roop glances with a jump knee and clinches. Mizugaki slugs his way out the clinch with a lunging left hook. Mizugaki follows a stiff jab into the clinch; Roop circles off the fence. Mizugaki lands a knee to the body as Roop forces another clinch. 10-10 for no advantage on either side. I have it 30-28 Mizugaki.
- Takeya Mizugaki defeats George Roop by unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Katsunori Kikuno vs. Diego Brandao
R1: Brandao plasters Kikuno with a right hand early and he goes down. Kikuno regains his footing as Brandao swarms, looking for a desperation clinch. Brandao never lets him off the hook and the ref steps in.
- Diego Brandao defeats Katsunori Kikuno by TKO (punches) R1 0:28
R1: Ishihara lands a hard body kick immediately after the glove touch, bordering on dirty. Ishihara continues to attack aggressively with left kicks, both upstairs and down, and hard left hands. Ishihara plugs Hirota with a one-two that trips him up. Ishihara motions for a moment to adjust his shorts and Hirota attacks with a combo. Short right counter for Hirota, then an inside low kick.
Ishihara lands a hard right counter. Two lefts to the face for Ishihara, whose aggression and speed are impressive. Hirota bull-rushes him and puts him on the fence but Ishihara circles off and lands an inside low kick. Another stiff counter right for Ishihara. Hirota lands a hard left, his best of the round. Now a left and a right glance for Hirota. Another left snaps Hirota's head back and Ishihara looks to drop him just as the bell sounds. 10-8 Ishihara.
R2: Pawing lefts from Ishihara, followed by an inside low kick. Hirota is dropped with another shot. Left hand glances for Hirota. Ishihara is keeping nonstop leather in Hirota's face and landing with unnerving accuracy. Left hook lands for Hirota. Ishihara answers with one of his own. Right cross lands for Hirota but he eats a counter left from Ishihara.
Hirota is able to maintain a closer distance and even out the strike count as we reach the halfway mark. They land punches simultaneously. Hirota follows behind a one-two to clinch up and put Ishihara on the fence. He drops for a double-leg and gets it, then gets the half back-ride as Ishihara scrambles but can't hold it. Hirota glances with a one-two but can't tie up a clinch. Ishihara with a clean counter left. Hirota attacks with a right/left and it glances, then he assails Ishihara with both hands after cornering him. 10-10.
R3: Ishihara clips Hirota with a heavy left hand and Hirota goes down, but gets back up quickly. They trade left hands. Hirota wades through Ishihara's combo to land a pair of punches as Ishihara retreats with his hands down. Ishihara with a left. Hirota lands a knee downstairs, then separates from the clinch and pops Ishihara with a right/left combo.
Inside low kick for Ishihara. Hirota follows a one-two into the clinch and hits a double leg. Half back-ride for Hirota as Ishihara turtles. Hirota goes to the body lock, then lets it go to fire a long sequence of right hands to the head. Ishihara slings two sloppy shots that Hirota ducks under, initiating another clinch. Body knee for Hirota. Short right lands for Hirota, who then keeps Ishihara on the cage in pursuit of a double. More short-range punches land for Hirota. 10-9 Hirota. I have it 29-28 Ishihara.
- The fight is ruled a draw (29-28 Mizuto Hirota, 29-28 Teruto Ishihara, 29-29)
Preliminary Card (Fox Sports 2, 8 p.m. ET)
Keita Nakamura vs. Li Jingliang
R1: Nakamura comes out with a head full of steam, pressuring Jingliang with punches. Nakamura hits an early takedown and Jingliang swivels for a triangle, then an armbar. Nakamura defends and plunges a left hand through Jingliang's defense. Closed guard and decent posture control from Jingliang. Nakamura lands three short hammer-fists to the face.
Mostly ineffective and "stay busy" strikes from Nakamura on top as Jingliang clings futilely to a closed guard and a body lock. Nakamura postures up with a minute left and lands more distracting hammer-fists. They're stood up with 36 seconds left. Nakamura flings a high kick and Jingliang looks for a counter. Nakamura buries a right hook into Jingliang's face but Jingliang answers with a nice counter. 10-9 Nakamura.
R2: Nakamura opens with a left. Jingliang lands at the tail-end of a one-two counter, then digs to the body with a left. Now a stiff jab from Jingliang forces Nakamura back. Inside low kick for Jingliang followed by a jab. Two more jabs from Jingliang, who keeps steady pressure on Nakamura with methodical combos.
Hard right to the body from Jingliang, then a left upstairs. Jingliang stuffs another left into Nakamura's mouth and it drops him. Jingliang pounces and Nakamura tries to roll into a leg lock. Jingliang stuffs it and punishes Nakamura with short punches. Nakamura lands a low kick as Jingliang connects with a counter. More sharp punches from Jingliang to end the round. 10-9 Jingliang.
R3: Nakamura comes out aggressive but eats a left from Jingliang, who's still sharper on the feet in the first few exchanges. Nakamura lands a left. Jingliang hits a takedown but Nakamura pops back up immediately. Jingliang keeps him on the cage with an under-hook and the ref separates the stalemate. Jingliang sprawls out on a Nakamura double-leg but Nakamura amazingly teleports to back control in the scramble and cinches on a rear-naked choke; this happens at light speed. Jingliang taps.
- Keita Nakamura defeats Li Jingliang by submission (rear-naked choke) R3 2:17
R1: Kasuya attacks with a body kick. Hein answers with an inside low kick. Kasuya takes Hein down with a sneaky ankle pick and just misses on a high kick as Hein's regaining his footing. Hein follows behind a left hand to clinch and lands a hard but hopefully inadvertent knee to the groin. We pause as Kasuya recovers and he'll definitely need some time -- this was a rugged low blow. We restart with 3:30 on the clock.
Kasuya glances with a right uppercut. Hein answers with an left cross that also glances, then barely gets a glove in front of a Kasuya high kick. Kasuya connects with the far-end of a left. Outside low kick for Kasuya, who gets in on a double-leg late in the round but can't finish it. 10-10.
R2: Hein rushes Kasuya with both hands whirring but it's Kasuya's right that slips through clean. Glancing left hand from Hein, then one to the body and another upstairs. Slapping counter right for Hein, then a left. Hein circling away and keeping Kasuya at bay with tight combos.
Kasuya connects flush on a punch. Kasuya lands a hook to the body as Hein lands one to the head. Glancing one-two from Hein. Clean left cross lands for Hein, then a right hook. 10-9 Hein.
R3: Hein opens with a hard left to the face. Kasuya gets the better of the next two exchanges. Uppercut/cross combo lands clean for Hein. Kasuya comes up short on a body kick. Jab lands for Kasuya. Hein answers with an outside low kick. And another. Make it three in a row. Kasuya lands a right body kick, finally cutting off the cage.
Outside low kick again for Hein and he's tenderizing Kasuya's lead leg. Kasuya shows urgency in pursuing Hein, then hits a nice reactive takedown. Hein immediately elevates and sweeps him and they reset on the feet. Kasuya lands a body kick and Hein counters with a right. 10-9 Hein. I have it 30-28 Hein.
- Nick Hein defeats Yusuke Kasuya by unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 30-27)
R1: Johnson uses kicks and his length to keep Kotani outside but neither has landed clean a minute in. Johnson unbolts two left high kicks that are blocked. Kotani is being very ... patient. Johnson finally finds his range in the form of a sharp right to Kotani's head. Kotani looks wobbled and Johnson pounces but can't land. Kotani responds by scooping up a low single but he can't finish it. Johnson blasts a spinning hook kick off Kotani's guard. Halfhearted one-two by Kotani. 10-9 Johnson.
R2: Kotani pumps a jab, circles away and waits on Johnson. Johnson finally cuts him off and Kotani counters his flurry with a single-leg attempt. Right hand and right front kick glance for Johnson. Kotani moves forward and gets clubbed with a right cross, and goes down. Johnson swarms him with a hail of leather from the top. Kotani absorbs it all and rolls out, getting back to his feet.
Johnson, who's been fighting southpaw, switches to orthodox briefly. Kotani manages a left hand but Johnson bombs a up-knee deep into his midsection. Johnson swarms but Kotani once again recovers and gets back to his feet. Johnson counters Kotani's lazy kick with a right cross and it stuns Kotani, but he recovers again. 10-8 Johnson.
R3: Kotani lands a counter left and is more willing to engage in the pocket. Johnson lands a double jab. Kotani glances with an inside low kick, then goes after Johnson with a pair of one-twos, landing effectively. Kotani clinches and puts Johnson on his back 90 seconds into the round. Johnson gets posture control and wheels into a leg lock; Kotani stands and steps over to escape but holds the fence throughout the exchange.
Kotani in Johnson's full guard. Johnson pursues an armbar that Kotani defends. Johnson goes after another armbar, then tries to switch to another leg lock; Kotani fights fire with fire by wrenching a foot lock on Johnson. Johnson rolls out and they reset on the feet. Kotani gets in on a double leg, then switches to a single leg. Johnson negates it. No dice on Kotani's next single attempt, nor the duck-under double leg that follows. 10-9 Kotani. I have it 29-27 Johnson.
- Kajan Johnson defeats Naoyuki Kotani by unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 30-27)
R1: Anzai uncorks a kick that whizzes over Zapata's head. Anzai forces a clinch but Zapata shoves him away. Anzai ducks under Zapata's charging one-two and gets in on a double leg with Zapata's back on the fence. Anzai gets him down despite what looked to be a brief fence-grab from Zapata. Anzai pinches Zapata's knees together and triangles his legs to prevent the escape.
Zapata gets to his feet after a struggle but can't escape Anzai's clinch. Anzai finally backs off and they reset in the center. Glancing outside low kick for Anzai. Then one inside that's half-checked. Anzai dives on a single leg as Zapata goes to the front headlock to counter. Zapata spikes down an elbow to Anzai's head. And another. Zapata lands two short punches directly to the back of Anzai's head. 10-9 Anzai.
R2: Zapata lands a kick to the body, then denies Anzai's clinch attempt. Anzai is relentless, adhering himself to Zapata with a single-leg attempt. Zapata drops more elbows to the head while fighting off the takedown. Nice counter right lands for Zapata. Anzai sneaks a punch in but Zapata answers with a nice flurry as Anzai initiates another clinch. Anzai gets him down despite another clear fence-grab from Zapata.
Zapata momentarily threatens with a guillotine until Anzai pulls his head out. Zapata is busier off his back now with a loose armbar attempt and a few up-kicks. Anzai gets back control but, without hooks, Zapata spins out and looks to counter-wrestle. Anzai stuffs it and circles Zapata onto the fence with another single-leg attempt. Zapata denies it but can only manage two punches before Anzai reattaches. More sharp downward elbows as Anzai works unsuccessfully for a double leg. 10-9 Zapata for effective striking.
R3: Anzai opens with a counter right hand, catching Zapata for his lax defense. They collide throwing strikes and Zapata turns his back on Anzai, nursing what might be a broken finger. The ref stops the fight and consults with someone cage-side, then waves the fight off.
- Shinsho Anzai defeats Roger Zapata by TKO (injury) R3 0:47