Tenshin returns for RIZIN 2017 to face Yamato Fujita

Tenshin vs Yamato Fujita RIZIN

RIZIN’s first card on the Kyushu Islands in Fukuoka is shaping up as an epic event.

The Japanese promotion has announced an additional five bouts for the 15 October card, adding one extra match to its Bantamweight Grand Prix, plus three exciting kickboxing bouts.

Amateur boxing champion Yamato Fujita will make his professional MMA debut against undefeated kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa. Tenshin has torn through all of his previous opponents at RIZIN, finishing Francesco Ghigliotti, Yoshinori Umeki and Nikita Sapun within two rounds. Fujita was a highly touted amateur boxer who transitioned to MMA last year has two submission victories under amateur rules. He is now looking to make a big statement in Fukuoka.

“I am flattered and honored to be able to make my professional debut on such a great platform against such a great name,” Fujita said.

“I feel this is an extremely great opportunity for me to make my name. I look to make my debut on the biggest platform in Japan against the biggest name in Japan and come out victorious and create a new chapter in this MMA scene.”

Despite his boxing pedigree, Fujita said he has been training intensively for MMA, but said he was hoping for a slugfest come October 15.

“I hope Tenshin mans up and fights me in a slugfest,” he added.

Tenshin however was having none of it.

“He’s not nearly at my level. I’m actually thinking I might just fight him at his own game. I really want to dominate this guy and show the fans everything I have,” Tenshin said.

Tenshin vs Yamato Fujita RIZIN
Yamato Fujita will make his pro MMA debut against undefeated kickboxer Tenshin.

Fresh from a TKO victory at ROAD FC 39, Moon Jea-Hoon will face Kevin Petshi in RIZIN’s Bantamweight Grand Prix. Moon has fought under ROAD banner since 2011 and holds a win over ROAD’s current bantamweight champion Kim Soo-Chul.

Frenchman Kevin Petshi has fought under various promotions in Asia and Europe and brings a three fight win streak to RIZIN.

“Both fighters have a striking background and both are extremely hungry,”
said RIZIN general manager Nobuhiko Takada. “They want to show the world what they can do.”

Also announced today were three kickboxing bouts, which Takada said would serve as a litmus test for future kickboxing bouts in RIZIN.

“We hope that the kickboxing fights are good enough so we can start considering kickboxing bouts in RIZIN. We are very excited to see how these guys will perform and I have no doubt these kickboxing fights will be some of the most exciting fights of the night.”

· Issei Ishii vs. Jin Mandokor
· Yuuki vs. Kuroki Darvish
· Ryota Renseigym vs. Yoshihisa Morimoto

With just a month out from the event, RIZIN CEO Nobuyuki Sakakibara said ticket sales have been strong, with some sections already sold out.

“There have been many things going on in the fight industry around the world, in Japan and outside of Japan. I am very excited to see all these changes and I hope our Fukuoka event can start something new.”

Previously announced for RIZIN 2017 in Fukuoka was a number of bouts for the women’s super atomweight tournament, plus a grappling super match between UFC legend Dan Henderson (32-15) and Kazushi Sakuraba (26-17-2).

Tatsuya Kawajiri will face Gabriel Oliveira in a wildcard qualifying bout for the men’s bantamweight grand prix.

Doors will open 12:30 and the event starts at 2pm. A live stream will be available on Fite TV.

Tenshin vs Yamato Fujita RIZIN

The updated fight card is as follows:
· Yamato Fujita vs. Tenshin Nasukawa
· Rena Kubota vs. Andy Nguyen
· Miyuu Yamamoto vs. Irene Cabello
· Alyssa Garcia vs. Maria Oliveira
· Kanna Asakura vs. Sylwia Juśkiewicz
· Shintaro Ishiwatari vs. Akhmed Musakaev
· Erson Yamamoto vs. Manel Kape
· Dan Henderson vs. Kazushi Sakuraba
· Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Gabriel Oliveira
· Issei Ishii vs. Jin Mandokor
· Yuuki vs. Kuroki Darvish
· Ryota Renseigym vs. Yoshihisa Morimoto
· Moon Jea-Hoon vs. Kevin Petshi