By Chris Gunn
Yesterday, the legendary promotion held their last event in Differ Ariake in Tokyo. This event did not disappoint with some excellent performances, particularly in the main and co-main events.
The event was headlined by Takasuke Kume, defending his lightweight title against Kazuki Tokudome, whom he won the title from just over a year ago with a wild first round TKO. After a couple of wins earlier this year, Tokudome got himself back into title contention and leading up to Sunday, the talk was about how Tokudome would approach the fight. The ferocious, aggressive style he is known for proved unsuccessful in the first meeting against the very physically powerful Kume. However, his approach to the second contest was very similar, as was the result. After being quickly knocked down and mounted, Tokudome was able to get back to his feet. However, this didn’t last long as the ensuing wild exchange ended in a brutal knockout after only 1.21 seconds of the first round. Kume looks to be a tough task for any challenger at lightweight, showing off his striking power to compliment his crushing top game.
The co-main event was another short affair. Ryo Chonan’s young Tokyo Tribe product, Takashi Sato, took on former champion Akihiro Murayama. The clever, skillful 37 year old Murayama couldn’t keep up with the clinical, aggressive striking of Sato. After damaging Murayama’s left eye early on with some powerful jabs, the southpaw Sato upped the pace and Murayama was unable to withstand the steady strikes from his powerful opponent.
Eventually, Murayama buckled and was finished with ground strikes. This was a calm, polished and impressive performance, and with only one loss in twelve contests, Sato looks to be a formidable force at welterweight.
Two important featherweight contests also took place in the card. The first of which was former champ Isao Kobayashi against Yuskue Kasuya. This was a brutal contest between two powerful men. With both fighters doing considerable damage to each other’s legs in the first round, this became a tough and closely fought battle, mainly against the fence, but with some consistent takedowns, Isao took got the decision.
Following this was a contest between Koyomi Matsushima and Kyle Aguon. 25-year-old Matsushima looked to use his powerful, dynamic grappling, but even when he could take Aguon down, he was unable to keep him there. Aguon had some early success with his straight punches but was subject to some huge body kicks by Matsushima. Towards the end of the fight, Matsushima tired greatly, but Aguon, possibly hampered by an injured ankle, was unable to capitalize. Matsushima won the fight but it was much more competitive than the unanimous decision indicated.
This was an exciting event with some brutal finishes. It will be very interesting to see who or how Kume will be dethroned, and also what is next for the promising Takashi Sato. It is also an exciting step for Pancrase, as they now have a contract for ten events at the huge Studio Coast venue in Shin-Kiba.
Catch the replay on UFC Fight Pass.
Takasuke Kume def. Kazuki Tokudome (KO, 1.21 Round 1)
Takashi Sato def. Akihiro Marayama (TKO, 4.15 Round 1)
Koyomi Matsushima def. Kyle Aguon (UD)
Isao Kobayashi def. Yusuke Kasuya (UD)
Nobuki Fuji def. Kenta Sakuma (UD)
Masatatsu Ueda def. Yuki Yasunaga (UD)
Hiroaki Ijima def. Teppei Maeyama (UD)
Ryo Hatta def. Takuya Eizumi (Submission, RNC, 4.17 Round 1)
Tatsuya So def. Yusuke Ogikubo (UD)
Takashi Matsuoka def. Munehiro Fujita (TKO, 1.04, Round 3)
Myung Bo Kim def. Yoko Higashi (Submission, Armbar, 2.10, Round 3)
Keisuke Kamei def. Toshiro Taguchi (TKO, 2.30 Round 3)
Kohei Sugiyama def. Satoru Enomoto (KO, Knee, 27 seconds, Round 1)
Kento Mizutani def. Katsuyuki Hironaka (UD)
Joji Goto def. Tatsuya Watanabe (UD)
Ryusuke Noda def. Satoshi Miyokawa (UD)