PANCRASE 256 update: KOP Ishiwatari takes on “Guillotine” Saito

Courtesy CAVE MMA
Courtesy CAVE MMA

Pancrase 256, the promotion’s first card of 2014 on February 2, has added a title challenge between Bantamweight King of Pancrase Shintaro Ishiwatari and Yo “Guillotine” Saito.

Shintaro Ishiwatari, the 2-time defending King of Pancrase, is hitting the radar hard right now. Recently set to face WEC champ Chase Beebe, he ended up taking on last-minute replacement Alan Yoshihiro when Beebe fell ill. The match turned into an eye opener when Yoshihiro went three rounds and made Ishiwatari work for a majority decision. This was after and all-out war with Kyoji Horiguchi in VTJ 2nd, in which he experienced his first KO since way back in 2009’s Sengoku. Fortunately neither were title shots. King Ishiwatari will finally put the belt back on the line in early 2014.

Yo Saito started making his bid for the title exactly one year ago when he started choking people out. He’s 8th ranked now, and probably warrants higher than that on the money scale since his wins in 2013 have all been pretty crazy. Still, even with Shintaro’s recent oopsies, Saito will not be able to put his opponent’s head on the chopping block so easily. It will be guaranteed fun to watch him try, though.

Previously announced for the event has been Legend FC Champ Yusuke Kawanago who earned the strap with a win over Rob Listita, who just became the first man to finish Lion Takeshi. He’ll face Hulk Oshiro the previously undefeated 2013 NeoBlood Tournament winner who just took top ranker Guy Delumeau a full three rounds and dropped the contest by a narrow split decision.

Yuki Kondo, Takafumi Ito, Tatsuya So, and AB also star on the event.

February 2, 2014
Differ Ariake
Tokyo, Japan

Bantamweight Championship
Shintaro Ishiwatari (16-5-4) 石渡伸太郎(CAVE/第2代王者)
You “Guillotine” Saito 齊藤耀(トイカツ道場/8位)

Yuki Kondo (55 – 28 – 9) 近藤有己 (パンクラスism) ランキング5位
Toshikazu ‘Kazz’ Suzuki (7 – 0 – 1) 鈴木”PJ”敏和

Yusuke Kawanago (13-3-1) 川那子祐輔(秋本道場jungle junction/Legend FC王者)
Hiroyuki (3-1-1) Hulk Oshiro ハルク大城(ボスジム/2013年ネオブラッドトーナメント同級優勝)

Takafumi Ito (37 – 33 – 13) 伊藤崇文 (36-33-13) (パンクラスism) 9th ranked
Akihito Hara (9 – 15 – 2) NeoBlood Winner

Chiaki Wakana (5 – 4 – 1) 若菜千明 (RANGER品川GYM)
Ryo Iseki (3 – 5 – 2) 井関 遼 (GRABAKA)

Juntaro Ami (7-5-1) 網 潤太郎 (AKZA/2010年NBT同級優勝)
小林 裕 (U-FILE CAMP)

Yasutaka Koga (8-1-1) 古賀 靖隆(Lotus/2位)
Tatsuya So (13-8-1) 曹 竜也(闘心/5位)

Andy Main (7-1) アンディ・メイン(チーム ナム・ファン/5位)
Akira Okada (7-3-2) アキラ (久我山ラスカルジム/10位)

Hiroki Aoki “AB” (駿河/9位)
Keigo ‘Chris Man’ Hirayama (17 – 13 – 7) クリスMAN (Paraestra Hachioji))

Genpei Hayashi (2-2) 林 源平(HEAT)
Hiroshi Hayashi (4 – 0 – 0) 林完/初参戦 (Honey trap)