UFC Plans Return to Japanese Soil with Four-Event Series in 2013



The UFC plans to return to Japan next year to host four events, UFC executive Mark Fisher recently told NikkanSports.com.

Fisher, the UFC executive vice president and managing director of Asian operations, revealed that the new Japanese event series will be held in small venues in front of about 5,000 spectators and will focus on fighter development in the Land of the Rising Sun. The Japanese shows are expected to receive distinct numbering apart from the UFC’s larger, regular events.

The UFC returned to Japan this past February following an 11-year absence to host UFC 144 at the Saitama Super Arena. The event was attended by 20,000 spectators and featured a title-winning performance from Benson Henderson in the main event, as “Smooth” wrested the lightweight strap from then-champion Frankie Edgar via unanimous decision.

Though longstanding organizations like Shooto and Pancrase still actively hold events, Japan’s two most visible promotions from an international standpoint, Dream and Sengoku, have both ceased operations. From 1997 to 2007, Japan was home to the massively popular Pride Fighting Championships until the promotion lost its domestic television deal and was subsequently sold to UFC parent company Zuffa. Prior to UFC 144, the Las Vegas-based organization had not held an event on Japanese soil since December 2000, when Tito Ortiz defended his light heavyweight championship against Yuki Kondo in the main event of UFC 29.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

  • 10 days ago
  • 4 views

SAITAMA, Japan – UFC Vice President of International Business Development Joe Carr confirmed to MMAjunkie that the promotion expects to hold 3-4 events in Asia next year, but further plans are still read news >>

  • 16 days ago
  • 0 views

BRASILIA, Brazil -- The UFC has three more events scheduled for Brazil this year, and they won’t slow down in 2015. At the Nilson Nelson Gymnasium in Brasilia, Brazil, UFC executive Grace Tourinho an read news >>

  • 9 days ago
  • 9 views

It was a night of nostalgia in Japan with wins by Mark Hunt and Yoshihiro Akiyama, but if Japan's MMA scene is to rebuild over the next few years, the name we should be looking at is flyweight Kyoji read news >>

  • 5 days ago
  • 3 views

With annual events in Japan and an increasing presence in Macau, Pacific Rim expansion has become a priority for the UFC. Next year, add South Korea to the list. On Wednesday's edition of UFC Tonight read news >>

  • 10 days ago
  • 8 views

Rin Nakai takes on former Strikeforce champion and UFC title contender Miesha Tate at UFC Fight Night 52 in Saitama, Japan and has no intentions of losing in front of the Japanese crowd. read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 1 views

UFC heavyweight Mark Hunt is looking to return to the octagon in November against Josh Barnett. Following his KO victory against Roy Nelson, Mark Hunt is pushing for a quick turnaround in Sydney this read news >>

  • 10 days ago
  • 13 views

UFC heavyweight Roy Nelson posts his comments on Facebook after his 2nd round loss to Mark Hunt in the main event of UFC Fight Night Japan. For the first time in 8 years, Roy Nelson is on the wrong e read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 7 views

Meanwhile, Myles Jury continues his ascension in the lightweight division after putting away Takanori Gomi in the first round, though the performance was only good enough to move him up one spot. The read news >>

  • 12 days ago
  • 96 views

What's a "Super Samoan" like you doing in a place like this? Former PRIDE attraction turned Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight contender Mark Hunt has returned to "The Land of the Risin read news >>