RIZIN FF is back. A few hours ago the Japanese promotion wrapped up their first event of the COVID-19 era. This is the first of back-to-back events put on by RIZIN at the Pia Arena in Yokohama. The second takes place tomorrow.
Fans of the promotion have had to wait since February 22nd for RIZIN’s patented brand of JMMA fun and fury. However, that period of patience was repaid in full with an action packed card that saw finishes in all of its bouts.
The main event saw the only non Japanese fighter on the card, Roberto ‘Satoshi’ de Souza improve his pro record to 9-1 with a vicious ground and pound victory over Yusuke Yachi. This was the decorated BJJ black belt’s first fight since losing to American UFC vet Johnny Case at RIZIN 19 last year. The brutal loss took Yachi’s record to 21-10 and gave him a 1-4 record in his last 5 fights, with losses to Case, Mikuru Asakura and Luiz Gustavo.
Another fighter who got a huge rebound win was former RIZIN FF and Invicta FC atomweight champion Ayaka Hamasaki. She beat Tomo Maesawa with a kimura inside of two rounds. Last time out Hamasaki lost her title to UFC vet Seo Hee Ham, aka ‘Hamderlei’. Hamasaki won the vacant title back in 2018 with an armbar win over Kanna Asakura.
Asakura was on today’s card, too. And, like her former foe, she impressed with a stoppage victory. She beat Mizuki Furuse by first round TKO.
The others to score finishes were former UFCer Naoki Inoue (who subbed Shooto Watanabe), Tetsuya Seki (who KO’d Kouya Kanda), Kyohei Hagiwara (who TKO’d Rikuto Shirakawa) and Kenji Kato (who KO’d Erson Yamamoto in the first round).
Monday’s RIZIN offering is headlined by Hiromasa Ougikubo vs. Kai Asakura for the bantamweight title. Also on the card former DEEP flyweight champion Yuki Motoya takes on Mamoru Uoi.
Check out the full results below, along with the finishes for Satoshi, Hamasaki and Kato:
157 lbs: Roberto de Souza def Yusuke Yachi via TKO (punches, round 1 (1:52).
115 lbs: Ayaka Hamasaki def. Tomo Maesawa via submission (kimura), round 2 (1:14).
108 lbs: Kanna Asakura def. Mizuki Furuse via TKO (punches), round 1 (1:35).
134: Naoki Inoue def. Shooto Watanabe via submission (rear naked choke). round 1 (1:40).
146: Tetsuya Seki def. Kouya Kanda via KO (punches), round 2 (3:47).
146: Kyohei Hagiwara def. Rikuto Shirakawa via TKO (punches), round 3 (4:40).
134: Kenji Kato def. Erson Yamamoto via KO (punches), round 1 (3:32).