(Main-eventers Ronnie Mann and Hatsu Hioki. Image courtesy of allelbows.)
Attention insomniacs and members of the undead: HDNet is hooking you up tonight with a live broadcast of "Sengoku Eighth Battle," which kicks off at 3 a.m. ET/midnight PT. Though the card lacks big names, it will feature the quarterfinals of their ongoing featherweight grand prix — and if the fights are as entertaining as the FWGP’s first round, we’ll be in for a treat, so DVR this bitch at the very least. Here’s what the matchups will look like…
FEATHERWEIGHT GRAND PRIX BOUTS
Hatsu Hioki vs. Ronnie Mann
Michihiro Omigawa vs. Nam Phan
Masanori Kanehara vs. Chan Sung Jung
Marlon Sandro vs. Nick Denis
Leonardo Santos vs. Kazunori Yokota
Maximo Blanco vs. Akihiko Mouri
Alexandre "Xande" Ribeiro vs. Keiichiro Yamamiya
Stanislav Nedkov vs. Travis Wiuff
Michael Costa vs. Makoto Takimoto
Kota Ishibashi vs. Shigeki Osawa
— #7-ranked featherweight Hatsu Hioki was always the favorite to win this GP, but British rising star Ronnie Mann is another stiff test for him. Both guys are great with submissions, but Hioki might be a little greater.
— Omigawa/Phan is the battle of guys who scored upsets to get into the tournament’s second round. The winner will still be a massive underdog to go all the way, but I say Phan takes this one via superior striking.
— Masanori Kanehara says he can choke out the Korean Zombie, Chan Sung Jung. More likely, Kanehara is going to get his brains eaten.
— Sandro vs. Denis is one of those "someone’s ’0′ has got to go" fights, but I think Sandro is keeping his. The Brazilian’s standing arm-choke of Matt Jaggers at Sengoku 7 showed just how slick his grappling is, and he represents a pretty sizable leap in competition for the "Ninja of Love."