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Report: Takanori Gomi Signs With the UFC

(Takanori Gomi wins the PRIDE lightweight title by knocking out Hayato Sakurai at Shockwave 2005.)

This would have been incredible if it happened three or four years ago, but hey, better late than never, right? According to MMA Fighting, lightweight legend Takanori Gomi has signed a multi-fight contract with the UFC; no word yet on the date of his debut or who his first opponent will be. Gomi visited the States last month to meet with the UFC and Strikeforce, and take in a training session at American Kickboxing Academy.

Holding a record of 31-5, Gomi is best known for his dominant run in PRIDE from 2004-2006, where he won the organization’s lightweight belt and took out such notable fighters as Jens Pulver, Tatsuya Kawajiri, Hayato Sakurai, and Mitsuhiro Ishida. However, his last PRIDE appearance was a shock gogoplata loss to Nick Diaz in February ’07, and he then went 2-2 in Sengoku, dropping matches to Sergey Golyaev and Satoru Kitoka; after the Kitaoka loss, Gomi began to question his training and motivation. Though Gomi has won his last two bouts, he hasn’t been facing the kind of top-level competition that he regularly enjoyed at his peak. Will the UFC’s talent-rich lightweight class re-ignite the Fireball Kid, or will he join Mirko Cro Cop and Wanderlei Silva in the PRIDE Curse Club?

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Moosewinter- January 3, 2010 at 4:39 am
as far as warm up fights go, i gotta say fuck that. nhl, nfl and nba teams don't get any goddamn warm up games once the season has begun, and the sooner the ufc (and everyone else) flushes the concept of 'warmup fight' or 'gatekeeper' from their awareness, the better.

Uhhh, ever heard of this phenomenon called the pre-season game? Yeah you know, where in every major team sport they play a few games so all the players can get used to the tempo of the sport and get physically ready. You know.. it's kind of like a WARM UP? Jesus do you even think when you're putting together an argument or do you just blather on like an idiot?
robthom- January 2, 2010 at 7:09 pm

Come on Gomi you fuck!

Snap out of it and give us the real Gomi !!!
Biffmiester- January 2, 2010 at 5:03 pm
yeah, we kinda all knew, but they just made it official today. just cuz we speculate doesn't mean its fact....yet......ryt, Kimo? anyways, big nog & cain are assed out.
steampunk22- January 2, 2010 at 4:30 pm
^^lol Skeletor

@Biff, I hope you are being sarcastic because I think that we all knew that a few weeks ago.
skeletor- January 2, 2010 at 4:23 pm
And now, in breaking breaking news, Frank Mir pulled out do to undisclosed injury suffered while walking to his seat at UFC 108.
Biffmiester- January 2, 2010 at 3:57 pm
And now, in breaking news, Frank Mir will fight Shane Carwin @ 111 for the interim heavyweight championship.
Hulk Smash- January 2, 2010 at 3:57 pm
ha ha ha!
skeletor- January 2, 2010 at 3:24 pm
who the fuck is this Gomi everybody is talking about?
Hulk Smash- January 2, 2010 at 3:20 pm
best of luck to the guy, but i think he's gonna get destroyed as soon as he faces a good challenger.
as far as warm up fights go, i gotta say fuck that. nhl, nfl and nba teams don't get any goddamn warm up games once the season has begun, and the sooner the ufc (and everyone else) flushes the concept of 'warmup fight' or 'gatekeeper' from their awareness, the better.

these guys are fighters, doing the kind of shit slobs like us can only dream about. it's insulting to every one of those guys to allow the use of warm up fights, and its practice dilutes the talent pool and/or makes it that much harder for the fighter who's gonna be the next big thing to get his break 'cause some chump like elvis sinosic or frank trigg or fucking heath herring is taking up space in the division.

so, fuck the warm up/tune up fight idea. i want all blood and guts, balls to the wall live or die action, all the fucking time.

anything less is barfighting.
WORLD CHUMPION- January 2, 2010 at 2:15 pm
Gomi will get whooped in the UFC. He's way outclassed there.
MMA-Deviant- January 2, 2010 at 1:29 pm
Oh snap.. Gomi is in the UFC. Huzzah! I'd like to see him against the likes of a Diego Sanchez. Or maybe Tyson Griffin. Or maybe he can exact his revenge, albeit siblingly, through a game Nick Diaz. BJ Penn? Fugetaboutit.
you just got pieced up homey- January 2, 2010 at 1:05 pm
I like watching Gomi fight. I think he's a very entertaining fighter but I unfortunately think he's had his "invincible shell" rocked. I think he might have bought into his own hype back in pride and and soon as he lost a fight it shook him up and he hasn't been the same since. I hope he finds that motivation he had back then and gets back to his dominant ways. Pit him against a chute box guy and see if their old rivaly heats up again
Durden- January 2, 2010 at 12:11 pm
Sweet I love kids with fireballs!
skeletor- January 2, 2010 at 10:06 am
I couldn't tell that's why I asked before I just started berating you. Thanks for clearing that up I think my head is still a little slow from the other night
RJeezy- January 2, 2010 at 10:05 am
If he gets a warmup fight first, Gomi vs. Edgar would be fucking great
exes.for.iballs- January 2, 2010 at 9:59 am

Hey bud, sorry about all the confusion, but everything I said has been sarcasm (or is it sardonism? Or is it irony? I get them mixed up).

"..and beat Penn retarded like I said he would 4 or 5 years ago"
I said that cuz I thought that Penn beat him 4 or 5 years ago. I couldn't remember the exact date.

And of course I don't think weed is performance enhancing anyone who does is an idiot.

I didn't think everyone would be so serious today.

Mex- January 2, 2010 at 9:42 am
I think the chance to fight in the UFC will motivate him enough for him to be competitive against anyone the UFC throws his way.
Hulk Smash- January 2, 2010 at 9:22 am
who gives a shit. he'll get his ass handed to him like all the other japanese phenoms that come to the ufc.
that's not racial or cultural either, so don't go all mental on me for saying it. these guys come from lower tier organizations where they're unstoppable champs, but when they get into (move up to) the ufc it's always the same story: give them an opponent of note and they get overpowered, overmuscled, overwhelmed and, eventually, overlooked.

p.s. if weed is a performance enhancer, then have the pilot flying the jumbo jet you're on fire up the bong to make himself more alert after a trans atlantic flight. i have no feelings on weed either way as a recreational/medicinal drug, but performance enhancer? get serious.
skeletor- January 2, 2010 at 9:10 am
"And if you don't think weed is a performance enhancing drug, you've obviously never been high."

Please elaborate, either you're a huge pot head, then I can appreciate your stance here. Or you're a fucking idiot who has no clue what the shit does. So please elaborate so I can accurately judge your level of stupidity or your level of stonerness, for future mockings or debates.

Thank You,
Future ruler of Eternia
exes.for.iballs- January 2, 2010 at 9:02 am
Yeah, I watched the fight. If you ask me gogo platas, much like leg kicks don't win fights (see shogun v. Machida). And if you don't think weed is a performance enhancing drug, you've obviously never been high.

Takanori Gomi 2010 UFC lw champ!
NECROPHYTE- January 2, 2010 at 8:50 am
Maybe Gomi VS Guida?
skeletor- January 2, 2010 at 8:13 am
He looked good in his last fight but I don't think he's there anymore.. I hope he finds his old style because there are a couple people i would love to see him whip the shit out of. He's probably going to get out wrestled and held down for a couple of fights and then go the way of Gono. And B. J. handled him pretty easily in there first fight and it would just be criminal to have them fight again.
Richard Tucker- January 2, 2010 at 7:45 am
@ exes:

He lost to Penn six years ago, and Penn's gotten a lot better since then. Gomi would get fucking murdered even worse in a rematch.
Cock Chestner- January 2, 2010 at 7:30 am
unless he comes and trains with an american camp consider him useless.
KimboSlicesofPie- January 2, 2010 at 7:24 am
Gomi lost to Diaz, they changed it to a no contest when Nick tested positive for THC. They claimed it was a performance enhancing substance.