“Kid” Yamamoto. Photo courtesy of Fighting and Entertainment Group.
DREAM parent company Fighting and Entertainment Group today revealed the promotion’s schedule for the new year, with DREAM’s first show being held on March 8 at the Saitama Super Arena in Japan and featuring the opening rounds of the organization’s inaugural featherweight and welterweight grand prix tournaments.
In total, DREAM will put on seven total shows in ‘09. Solidified dates for shows include April 5 at Nippon Gaishi Hall and December 31 at the Saitama Super Arena for the annual year-end K-1 Dynamite show. DREAM officials are also planning to hold shows in May, July, September, and October.
Gegard Mousasi. Photo courtesy of Fighting and Entertainment Group.
Newly crowned DREAM middleweight champion Gegard Mousasi has told Fighters Only Magazine that Affliction Entertainment is planning on matching him up against Vitor Belfort and Fedor Emelianenko against Josh Barnett at the organization’s next scheduled show in January.
I’m going to train with Fedor in preparation for Affliction in January,” Mousasi said in a recent interview with the magazine. “I think it is Fedor against Josh Barnett and they want me to fight Vitor Belfort.”
Mousasi is currently a member of the Red Devil Fight Club and is also a client of Vadim Finkelstein, the same manager of Emelianenko. He defeated Melvin Manhoef and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza at DREAM.6 last weekend to win the promotion’s inaugural middleweight grand prix and be crowned their first middleweight champion.
Photo courtesy of Fighting and Entertainment Group.
We will be going live at 3:00 AM ET with live results of this morning’s DREAM.6 event, which takes place at the Saitama Super Arena in Japan. Those in North America will be able to watch the event live on HDNet. A replay of the show will air at 4:00 PM ET later today.
DREAM.6 will feature the final round of the promotion’s inaugural grand prix. Melvin Manhoef will take on Gegard Mousasi and Zelg Galesic will face Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza with the two winners meeting in the show’s finale. Mirko Filipovic and Alistair Overeem will meet in an anticipated grudge match that will serve as the co-main event.
Be sure to leave comments throughout the morning. Detailed live results are after the jump.
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza. Photo courtesy of Fight Entertainment Group.
DREAM has announced the pairings for the final round of it’s inaugural middleweight grand prix, which will culminate at DREAM.6 on September 26th at the Saitama Super Arena in Japan. The event will be televised live on HDNet in North America.
Grappling wizard Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, who won a hard-fought decision over Jason “Mayhem” Miller to advance to the tournament’s final round, will take on skilled kickboxer Zelg Galesic in one semi-final. The other will see tournament favorite Melvin Manhoef face off against well-rounded rising prospect Gegard Mousasi. The winners of both bouts will then fight in the show’s main event.
Also announced for DREAM.6 was a featherweight bout between the streaking Hideo Tokoro, winner of his last two fights, and Shooto and Pancrase product Atsushi Yamamoto. Additional rumored participants include former PRIDE heavyweight standout Mirko Cro Cop, Hayato “Mach” Sakurai, and rising middleweight Yoshihiro Akiyama.
Shinya Aoki submitted former Olympic wrestler Katsuhiko Nagata with a modified gogoplata Saturday night at DREAM.4 in Japan. Photo courtesy of Fight Entertainment Group.
Those who predicted an easy victory for Melvin Manhoef over Japanese legend Kazushi Sakuraba in the main event of DREAM’s latest effort Saturday night in Japan saw their thoughts become reality as Manhoef quickly smashed Sakuraba en route to an early first-round stoppage to move on to the finals of the organization’s inaugural middleweight grand prix.
The 14,037 in attendance at the Yokohama Arena saw Manhoef knock down Sakuraba with a right hand after stunning him with a head kick in the bout’s opening moments. Manhoef pounced on Sakuraba, who despite being able to pull guard, was unable to stop much of the punishment Manhoef was dishing out. Manhoef eventually transitioned to side control where he landed a number of unanswered hammer fists that forced the referee to jump in and save the longtime veteran.
“Sakuraba has been my hero, and he still is my hero. I’m sorry I had to beat him up for you,” Manhoef told the crowd after the fight. “I was prepared for 15 minutes, so it was my plan to start relaxed. But he wanted the takedown, and when he moved his head I caught him with a punch and then I kicked him. I knew when he went down, and we had practiced that, if he was in the ropes of the referee would stop and he could rest, that’s not what I wanted so I pulled him out from the ropes then punched again.”
In the night’s opening bout, grappling wizard Shinya Aoki submitting former Olympic wrestler Katsuhiko Nagata with a modified gogoplata from the mount position, a technique likely never seen before in a professional bout.
Aoki was able to sweep Nagata to the canvas early on in the bout but Nagata’s wrestling skills quickly allowed him to stand back up. Aoki then switched to a body lock and used surprising strength to muscle Nagata to the ground, where he quickly moved to mount after a scramble. After landing a couple of punches, Aoki attempted a failed guillotine before pulling off the gogoplata seemingly out of nowhere.
With the win, Aoki moves on to the finals of the promotion’s first-ever lightweight tournament where he will face former UFC contender Caol Uno. Philadelphia Fight Factory product Eddie Alvarez will take on tough wrestler Tatsuya Kawajiri in the other semi-final bout on July 21st in Japan.
Jason “Mayhem” Miller submits an alligator while posing for pictures during a pre-fight press conference for DREAM.4. Photo courtesy of FEG.
Japan’s DREAM.4 takes place this Sunday, June 15 and is headlined by the second round of the Middleweight Grand Prix. The event will be broadcast live tomorrow on HDNet at 4am ET.
There are four fights in round two with the winners moving on to DREAM.6 where a champion will be crowned.
Another Sakuraba fight, another opponent who could kill him in the ring. At 39, can Sakuraba stand in there and take another savage beating? Manhoef is one of the most intense strikers at 185 and you can guarantee he’ll get his shots in on Saku. But we know Melvin has his limitations on the ground, Sakuaraba’s bread and butter. I think there’s one think we can count on in this fight; it won’t be a decision. Before 15 minutes is up, either Sakuraba will get KO’ed or he’ll submit Manhoef.
Prediction: Melvin Manhoef
Jason “Mayhem” Miller scored a TKO win over Katsuyori Shibata to move onto the second round of DREAM’s inaugural middleweight grand prix, where he will face submission wizard Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza. Photo courtesy of FEG.
DREAM officials late last night announced the quarterfinal matchups for the organization’s inaugural middleweight grand prix tournament, of which the second-round will take place on June 15th at the Saitama Super Arena in Japan.
Japanese legend Kazushi Sakuraba will go up against hard-hitting Dutch kickboxer Melvin Manhoef in the night’s most high-profile tournament matchup. Sakuraba scored a first round submission of Karate practitioner Andrews Nakahara to move on.
Manhoef will be replacing longtime veteran Kiyoshi Tamura, who was forced to pull out of the tourney after suffering a broken finger in his last fight. Manhoef stopped Dae Won Kim with strikes in a tournament reserve bout earlier this month.
Additional second-round matchups announced include Gegard Mousasi vs. Dong Sik Yoon, Jason Miller vs. Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, and Zelg Galesic vs. Taiei Kin in a rematch of their controversial K-1 Hero’s bout in October of last year.
Already previously announced for the event was a lightweight grand prix bout between tournament favorite Shinya Aoki and former Olympic wrestler Katsuhiko Nagata.