Le Banner-Ishii, Kharitonov-Mizuno Official for ‘Dynamite’

By Mike Whitman Dec 22, 2010
Two bouts were added to “Dynamite: The Power of Courage 2010” on Wednesday, as K-1 mainstay Jerome Le Banner will meet Olympic gold medalist Satoshi Ishii, and former Pride star Sergei Kharitonov will square off against Dream light heavyweight grand prix finalist Tatsuya Mizuno.

The matchups were made official at a press conference in Tokyo, where K-1 and Dream parent company Fighting and Entertainment Group also confirmed the participation of Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem. Also announced was an “IGF special rules” match between Bob Sapp and former sumo Shinichi Suzukawa, which will be produced by Japanese pro-wrestling icon Antonio Inoki’s Inoki Genome Federation. “Dynamite” will go down on New Year's Eve at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.

On Tuesday, FEG added a welterweight MMA attraction between Nigerian kickboxer Andy Ologun and debuting former pro-baseball player Katsuaki Furuki.

Le Banner has not fought under MMA rules since 2006, when he defeated Jimmy Ambriz at K-1 Hero's 4 in Tokyo. His most recent trip inside the kickboxing ring resulted in defeat, as he forfeited his fight against Kyotaro Fujimoto in October after failing to answer the bell for a fourth round at the 2010 K-1 World Grand Prix Final 16 in Seoul.

After winning judo gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, Ishii made an unsuccessful MMA debut at last year’s “Dynamite,” losing a unanimous decision to fellow gold medalist Hidehiko Yoshida. Since then, Ishii has gone undefeated, submitting two of his last three opponents. Most recently, he submitted Katsuyori Shibata with a first-round kimura at the K-1 World Max 2010 Final on Nov. 8.
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