Vale Tudo Japan 2 will take place on June 22, 2013 in Tokyo, Japan. The iconic promotion’s rebirth aims to set top Japanese fighters against international up and comers.
VTJ previously announced Kyoji Horiguchi versus Shintaro Ishiwatari and “Wicky” Akiyo Nishiura versus Yuta Nezu to the delight of hardcore MMA fans of the Japanese scene. MMA-in-ASIA write about the matches here. The next news out of the promotion sees three more Japanese rock stars added to the line up and they’ll be facing stiff competition on hungry foreign fighters.
*Edit: As of the afternoon, VTJ added a fourth bout to the event, detailed below.
The first match is Caol Uno versus Anthony Avila of Team AlphaMale – right where Wicky’s done his recent stint. Uno is coming into this match with a win in Shooto 2nd Round which turned upside down his lengthy tumble from the spotlight of the UFC, DREAM, and Hero’s. He’s not taking an easy return to the limelight with his next opponent. Avila is a Strikeforce and Tachi Palace veteran who punched out his first three wins, then went on a rapid succession of chokes. His latest KO of Shad Smith at WFC5 was at top billing, lending to his USA street cred.
The second match is Hiroyuki Takaya versus Daniel Romero. “Bancho” is the DREAM Featherweight champ and Strikeforce vet who has proved time and time again that he can stand and bang with the best. Fittingly he will face an opponent who does the same. Romero doesn’t have the prettiest record as he likes to get in the thick of things early on, and the chances he took were to the delight of the audience rather than for his record. This match will not go the distance.
The third fight announced is Hideo Tokoro versus Taylor McCorriston. Tokoro is a fan and fighter favorite in Japan, and a devastating slam by Yusup Saadulaev in the 2011 DREAM Bantamweight Tournament left a collective lump in everyone’s throats. A year later he was back in stunning form at VTJ 1 and KOed fellow JMMA legend Rumina Sato at light speed. McCorriston’s 6 degrees of separation is interesting: he lost to Darryl Montague right before Darryl split decisioned Mamoru Yamagushi at VTJ 1. On paper, Tokoro is the heavy handed favorite, but McCorriston’s submission skill could make things interesting.
A fourth match, announced later in the day, sets Mamoru Yamaguchi against Mikihito Yamagami. Mamoru, the iconic afro-ed former Shooto Bantamweight Champion, will take on Yamagami, the current Shooto Flyweight Champion, at 56.7 kgs. Both fighters are notable stand up experts so this match promises to deliver a couple of spiders dancing on a hotplate.
June 22, 2013
Kyoji Horiguchi versus Shintaro Ishiwatari
“Wicky” Akiyo Nishiura versus Yuta Nezu
Caol Uno versus Anthony Avila
Hiroyuki Takaya versus Daniel Romero
Hideo Tokoro versus Taylor McCorriston