RIZIN 23 took place yesterday at Yokohoma’s Pia Arena. RIZIN 22 happened there just one day before and delivered an entire card of stoppages. RIZIN 23 came oh so close to matching that.
In yesterday’s main event Kai Asakura won the RIZIN bantamweight title with a quick and brutal finish over Hiromasa Ougikubo. Asakura quickly took the fight to the former Shooto champion, hurting Ougikubo with an uppercut and dropping him with a knee. From there he swarmed with punches and pair of soccer kicks that forced the referee to step in.
With the win Asakura rebounds from his TKO loss to recent UFC signing Manel Kape and sees his record climbed to 15-2. Prior to losing to Kape, Asakura had beaten UFC vet Ulka Sasaki (breaking his jaw in the process) and TKO’d Kyoji Horiguchi (in a bantamweight non title fight).
In the co-main event former DREAM champ Yuki Motoya added another submission victory to his record. This time it was a jump-guard guillotine over Mamoru Uoi. That win took Motoya to 25-8, 2-0 in 2020. Last year was one to forget for Motoya; he lost three in a row, including a split decision to Ougikubo.
Before that skid Motoya won five in a row with finishes that included a leg scissors choke (over Justin Scoggins) and a sleeper choke (versus Kazuma Sone).
Two of the wildest finishes came further down the card. Yutaka Saito KO’d Kazumasa Majima by stepping back to avoid a takedown attempt and then rifling off a soccer kick. Saito landed more kicks and knees to his downed opponent before the fight was called off. And former DEEP flyweight champion Makoto Takahashi scored a crazy guillotine finish, which he pulled off after his jumping knee attempt was caught by Seiichiro Ito.
Full results, along with the finishes for Asakua, Motoyo, Saito and Takahashi, below:
134 lbs: Kai Asakura def. Hiromasa Ougikubo via TKO (soccer kick), round 1 (4:21).
134 lbs: Yuki Motoya def. Mamoru Uoi via submission (guillotine), round 3 (2:19).
146 lbs: Yutaka Saito def. Kazumasa Majima via KO (soccer kicks and knees on the ground), round 2 (0:24).
146 lbs: Jin Aoi def. Kotetsu Boku via unanimous decision.
130 lbs: Makoto Takahashi def. Seiichiro Ito via submission (guillotine), round 2 (4:30).
128 lbs: Tatsuki Saomoto def. Yusaku Nakamura via KO (punches), round 1 (4:06).