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On This Day in MMA History Fight Flashback: Misaki vs. Santiago I

On this day three years ago, this epic first meeting between Kazuo Misaki and Jorge Santiago took place at Sengoku no Ran 2009 at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.

The-back-and-forth battle that saw Santiago win the Sengoku middleweight strap after catching Misaki with a rear naked choke at 3:26 of the fifth round would set up arguably one of the top five MMA bouts of all time when the pair met again 19 months later at Sengoku Raiden Championships 14.

Also on the card was future Strikeforce champion Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal, who was competing in just his third MMA bout. The decorated college wrestler made quick work of his opponent Yukiya Naito, stopping the Japanese fighter with strikes in the opening frame and improving his undefeated record to 3-0 with his third straight TKO win.

Although Santiago’s UFC aspirations were once again short-lived following back-to-back Octagon losses to Brian Stann and Demian Maia, at least we still have these two fights to remember him by.

JMMA never die.

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ronburgundy- January 4, 2012 at 10:06 pm