Kazuhiro Nakamura. Photo property of PRIDE FC Worldwide.
World Victory Road today announced two additional bouts that finalize the first round of the organization’s inaugural middleweight grand prix at Sengoku V, which takes place on September 28 at the Yoyogi National First Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan.
Former PRIDE light heavyweight standout Kazuhiro Nakamura will take on Paul Cahoon while Strikeforce tournament winner Jorge Santiago will face World Extreme Cagefighting veteran Logan Clark.
The two bouts join Yuki Kondo vs. Yuki Sasaki and Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos as the matchups taking place in the tournament’s first round. Former UFC welterweight title challenger Frank Trigg, who defeated Makoto Takimoto at Sengoku IV on August 24 is being discussed a possible late entrant to the bracket by WVR officials.
It was also announced Thursday that heavyweight grappling wizard Alexandre “Xande” Ribeiro will go up against professional wrestler Takashi Sugiura at the show.
From robcee on Flickr.
English mixed martial arts legend Ian Freeman was victorious in his return from a brief retirement Saturday afternoon, earning an unanimous decision over Paul Cahoon and taking the former champion’s Cage Rage British light heavyweight title in Birmingham.
Freeman saw very little trouble during the course of the bout with Cahoon, save Cahoon taking the veteran’s back on a pair of separate occasions, while using an effective ground-and-pound assault to keep Cahoon at bay and leaving him unable to mount a suitable amount of offense.
After the fight, Freeman assured fans that a return fight against Cahoon was not a one-time thing and that he would be back to defend his title.
“I’m 41 years old now and I have to say that I’m in the best shape of my life,” Freeman said during a post-fight interview. “The training leading up to this fight was very difficult but the end result was worth it. I feel younger than I did years ago. Going back into retirement isn’t an option at this point. I’m not going anywhere.”
Marius Zaromskis was unsuccessful in his bid to win the vacant Cage Rage British welterweight belt, suffering a nasty cut in the beginning of the first round of his bout against Che Mills that forced the ringside doctor to stop the action after the first five minutes, ultimately awarding Mills the championship.
Matt Ewin controlled Mark Epstein over three rounds to win an unanimous decision and successfully defend his Cage Rage British middleweight title. UFC veteran Ross Pointon submitted Ross Mason with a heel hook and James Zikic submitted Rodney Faverus, handing the former kickboxer his fifth straight defeat.
Complete results from the event:
Harvey Harra def. Gary Kelly - Submission (Triangle)
Chris Rice def. Edgeleson Lue - TKO (Strikes)
Popek Rak def. Kevin Simms - TKO (Strikes)
Brad Pickett def. Paul Reed - Majority Decision
Henrique Nogueira vs. Marc Goddard - Draw
Matt Ewin def. Mark Epstein - Unanimous Decision
Ross Pointon def. Ross Mason - Submission (Heel Hook)
James Zikic def. Rodney Faverus - Submission (Armbar)
Che Mills def. Marius Zaromskis - TKO (Cut)
Ian Freeman def. Paul Cahoon - Unanimous Decision
From robcee on Flickr.
English mixed martial arts legend Ian Freeman may come out of a brief retirement and return to action against former kickboxer and Golden Glory product Paul Cahoon at Cage Rage’s next event on May 10th at the at Wembley Arena in London, England.
The news comes from Stash Capar of The Fight Network, who reports that anonymous sources within the promotion have said that Freeman is likely to step back into the cage in the spring, most likely against Cahoon.
Freeman has not fought since winning a unanimous decision over Mark Epstein at Cage Rage 18: Battleground in September of 2006. Since then the 41-year-old Sunderland native has been busy doing backstage interviews for Cage Rage during their pay-per-view events and serving as editor of the UK-based “Fighters Only” magazine.
If Freeman’s return does come to fruition, he would be wise to not look past Cahoon’s sub-par record. Despite winning as many fights as he has lost, Cahoon has overcome struggles early on in his career to post a current five-fight winning streak, which includes a recent TKO win over Elvis Sinosic in December.
Freeman announced his second break from active fighting last April. He had previously announced that he was stepping away in 2005 after pulling out of a scheduled bout with Forrest Griffin at UFC 55 but returned to active competition the following year.