Mirko Cro Cop VS Shinichi Suzukawa
DREAM 18 wasn’t the only Japanese MMA event on New Year’s Eve. Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2012 – a hybrid MMA/Pro-wrestling card – also provided the MMA community with some freak show goodness. We’ve been putting off coverage of this event until videos surfaced because frankly, when the main event features a post-prime Cro Cop vs. a disgraced sumo wrestler turned professional wrestler, well, yeah, this event can wait a few days.
The main event, Cro Cop vs. Suzukawa, proved that no matter how far past his prime he is, Cro Cop can still submit a clueless jabroni making his MMA debut. In other words, it was a decent freak show fight that played out exactly as it should have. It just wouldn’t be New Year’s Eve without a freak show fight, now would it?
The co-main event displayed Japanese judoka Satoshi Ishii fighting against what was apparently Tim Sylvia. Despite committing himself to the most explosive workout program in all of MMA, The Maine-iac showed up looking like he hasn’t even thought about training since his Arlovski fight in September, and did it ever show. Ishii took the fight by unanimous decision.
My favorite moment from this one comes around the 1:40 mark, when Ishii pushes Sylvia across the ring attempting a takedown. No one is here to say that judo doesn’t work against larger opponents, but Ishii found that it’s certainly much more difficult to implement when your opponent is a 300+ pounds of fat, ribs and lousy tattoos. Probably the best instance of a fighter being confused by his freaky opponent’s fatness since Minowaman vs. Butterbean.
Speaking of Minowaman, he fought on New Year’s Eve, as is tradition. His opponent was middleweight “Playbor” Bor Bratovz. Okay, so it wasn’t a freak show fight, but Minowa managed to defeat someone his own size, which is almost as impressive. He picks up a heel-hook in the first round of this one.
Rolles Gracie also defeated Yusuke Kawaguchi two minutes into the first round of their fight by arm-triangle choke. You’re on your own for a video of that one, though. Enjoy the freak shows.