TOKYO -- All 16 MMA fighters participating in Monday night’s Dream
18 and Glory 4 ”Special
NYE 2012” made weight on Sunday afternoon, though Will Brooks
Kang needed several attempts to do so.
Brooks came in at 157 pounds on his first trip to the scale,
missing the mark by 2.6 pounds for his scheduled lightweight bout
with former Dream title
Kitaoka. The American was given two additional hours to make
weight and came in heavy again, though no specific numbers were
disclosed. Brooks received a third chance to hit his mark and
finally cleared the bar, weighing in at 154.3 pounds.
Pride and UFC veteran Denis Kang also
needed extra time to clear the weight limit for his middleweight
bout with Dutch slugger Melvin
Manhoef, weighing in 1.3 over on his first attempt. This
apparently angered Manhoef, who decided he couldn’t wait another
day and tried to brawl with Kang on the scales. Despite the
setback, Kang hit the target weight after two additional hours,
coming in at 185.1 pounds.
Despite the two weight misses, the remainder of the night’s
fighters made weight without any hiccups.
The MMA-Kickboxing double feature marks the return of major league
martial arts to Japan, after a year of absence and rumors of
Dream’s demise. Main-evented by a featherweight fight pitting
Japanese legend Tatsuya
Kawajiri against UFC veteran Michihiro
Omigawa, the MMA portion of the event features a cast of mostly
familiar faces to the Japanese fight scene.
A former top-tier lightweight in Pride and Shooto, Kawajiri voiced
his excitement to be back in the Japanese ring.
“This is my first fight in Japan in a long time, so I’d like to
show everyone who the best in Japanese MMA is, pound-for-pound,” he
“I feel like I’m going to explode, so I’m going to light the fuse
inside me and explode inside the ring tomorrow,” said Omigawa,
displaying his usual manic energy.
The event also features some of Dream’s title-holders in
non-championship bouts, as featherweight champion Hiroyuki
Takaya takes on Tachi Palace champ Georgi
Karakhanyan, and bantamweight belt-holder Bibiano
Fernandes faces Deep champion Yoshiro
Maeda. Dream lightweight kingpin Shinya Aoki
also makes an appearance Monday night, facing off with UFC vet
Dream 18 Weigh-In Results
Kawajiri (143.3) vs. Michihiro
Takaya (143.3) vs. Georgi
Aoki (154.3) vs. Antonio
Fernandes (138.5) vs. Yoshiro
Manhoef (184.3) vs. Denis Kang
Sakurai (168.6) vs. Phil Baroni
Coenen (145.5) vs. Fiona
Kitaoka (154.3) vs. Will Brooks