Nobutatsu Suzuki Downs Brock Larson, Becomes First One FC Welterweight Champion

By Brian Knapp Mar 14, 2014
Nobutatsu Suzuki did a number on Brock Larson.

Suzuki let his hands, feet and knees do the work, as he captured a unanimous verdict from Larson to become One Fighting Championship’s first welterweight titleholder in the One FC 14 “War of Nations” headliner on Friday at Stadium Negara in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Suzuki (11-1-2, 2-0 One FC) joins Bibiano Fernandes, Koji Oishi and Shinya Aoki in One FC’s current pantheon of champions.

Larson (37-8, 1-1 One FC) was no match for the Japanese striker in the standup department. The 36-year-old Minnesotan’s advances were met with an effective sprawl and clean counter punches, his title hopes waning with each passing moment. Stepping knees and kicks to the body were perhaps Suzuki’s strongest weapons, as he repeatedly forced Larson to retreat to the butt scoot position.

Suzuki, 36, will not have long to enjoy his spoils. He expects to defend the welterweight crown against unbeaten former Bellator MMA champion Ben Askren later this year.

In the co-main event, undefeated South Korean Dae Hwan Kim submitted Lakay MMA’s Kevin Belingon with a first-round rear-naked choke. Kim (10-0-1, 2-0 One FC) drew the curtain 4:39 into the first round of the bantamweight duel, extending his winning streak to four fights.

A Universal Reality Combat Championship titleholder, Belingon (12-4, 3-4 One FC) has lost twice in his past three outings.

Elsewhere, Constrictor Team’s Adriano Moraes became the first man in more than five years to submit Yasuhiro Urushitani, as he finished the onetime Shooto titleholder with a second-round rear-naked choke. Urushitani (21-7-6, 1-1 One FC) tapped out 3:48 into round two of the flyweight tilt, his modest two-fight winning streak halted.

The 24-year-old Moraes (10-1, 1-1 One FC) has now stopped six different opponents inside two rounds.

Phuket Top Team’s Andrew Leone utilized takedowns, damaging ground-and-pound and an active submission game in capturing a unanimous decision from former Shooto champion Shinichi Kojima in a one-sided flyweight affair. Leone (7-2, 2-0 One FC), who entered the match three pounds overweight, has posted seven wins in his last eight outings.

Kojima (13-6-5, 1-1 One FC) was not much of a factor. Leone, the younger brother of World Extreme Cagefighting and Bellator alum Anthony Leone, controlled the opening stages of the match and never looked back. The 24-year-old grounded Kojima in all three rounds, tearing into him with knees, elbows and punches. Leone also mixed in a few submission attempts, including a guillotine in the second round and a rear-naked choke and armbar in the third.

In other action, Former One FC champion Kotetsu Boku (21-9-2, 2-2 One FC) took out Arnaud Lepont (10-4, 1-3 One FC) with punches 4:06 into round one of their clash at 155 pounds; Kamal Shalorus (9-3-2, 2-0 One FC) earned a unanimous decision over Costa Rican lightweight Ariel Sexton (8-3, 0-1 One FC) Peter Davis (8-3, 5-2 One FC) recorded his second win in as many appearances, as he put away Pakistan’s Waqar Umar (3-1, 0-1 One FC) 3:07 into the second round of their lightweight scrap; Evolve MMA featherweight Herbert Burns (3-0, 2-0 One FC) remained unbeaten with a unanimous verdict over journeyman Harris Sarmiento (36-26, 0-1 One FC); and Malaysian flyweight Saiful Merican (3-1, 2-1 One FC) escaped with a split decision over Khim Dima (0-2, 0-2 One FC).

Editor’s note: This item was updated at 12:28 p.m. PT on March 14. The original article listed Bashir Ahmad as Davis’ opponent.

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