After a string of complications that would make Yamma execs blush,
Greatest Common Multiple has finally put the finishing touches on
its Cage Force card Saturday at Differ Ariake in Tokyo.
The event, which sources have told Sherdog.com has gone
considerably over budget, has been hit with nearly every planning
problem imaginable. It was supposed to feature four quarterfinals
in the 135-pound tournament and the remaining two quarterfinals in
the 145-pound tournament.
However, there were immense struggles finalizing the bantamweight
tournament field, which led to the promotion scrambling for an
eighth fighter to finish the bracket. An injury to Takeya Mizugaki(Pictures) forced his quarterfinal bout with
Robson Moura(Pictures) to be postponed to June, at which
point Moura demanded more money and was removed from the card.
After Moura's removal and Mizugaki's injury, 135-pound tournament
entrant Katsuya Toida(Pictures) was injured in training,
postponing his quarterfinal bout with Daichi Fujiwara(Pictures).
Oumakhanov defeated Kanomata in last year's lightweight
championship tournament amidst much controversy. An accidental
headbutt broke Kanomata's nose, leaving him unable to continue and
strangely giving Oumakhanov the TKO victory.
In the first of two 135-pound quarterfinals Saturday that weren't
sabotaged, former Shooto world champion Masahiro Oishi(Pictures) will take on Paul McVeigh(Pictures), arguably the United Kingdom's
strongest bantamweight. The 39-year-old Oishi has won his last
three bouts, with his most recent match being a submission victory
over Artemij Sitenkov
in Lithuania this past November. McVeigh, a winner of eight of his
last nine, is undefeated at 135 pounds.
In the other 135-pound quarterfinal, GCM mainstay Taiyo Nakahara(Pictures) will meet Kingdom Ehrgeiz
torchbearer Ryota Uozomi.
Nakahara broke a miserable 2-5 stretch in February, submitting
Motonobu Tezuka with a
nasty kneebar in just 67 seconds. Ryota, the protege of indie MMA
cult figure Hidetada Irie(Pictures), has competed largely in
the confines of Kingdom Ehrgeiz. He is perhaps the most definitive
dark horse in the 135-pound bracket due to his inexperience outside
of his obscure home promotion.
Sherdog.com has learned that in order to rectify the chaotic
tournament picture, Carvalho and Hoshino will meet on Cage Force's
June 22 card at Differ Ariake. Their bout will be situated as a
tournament semifinal, and the winner will meet the winner of the
other semifinal between Akiyo Nishiura(Pictures) and Takeshi Yamazaki(Pictures).
Likewise, Fujiwara and Toida will contest their 135-pound
quarterfinal on the same card, and Mizugaki will meet an
undetermined foe in the final bantamweight quarterfinal to
stabilize the tournament.
Hashi Lands in L.A. for Bout with
A week rife with quality MMA continues Thursday with one of Japan's
top female competitors taking on her biggest test to date.
Smackgirl champion Takayo
Hashi(Pictures) will fight female star Amanda Buckner(Pictures) on Fatal Femmes Fighting's fourth
offering from the Shrine Expo Center in Los Angeles.
Hashi, who sports a 10-1 record in MMA, hasn't fought since she
captured Smackgirl's 128-pound title in September. In that bout,
she took a hotly contested decision over Hitomi Akano(Pictures) and in the process avenged the
sole loss of her career.
Buckner has lost but once in her last nine bouts, with that defeat
coming to Tara Larosa(Pictures) in a sensational August
2006 contest. Since that bout, Buckner has knocked off Julie Kedzie(Pictures), and most recently she took a
commanding decision over the aforementioned Hitomi Akano(Pictures) last April.