Cage Force Headliner Scrapped; Tsuji Takes Valkyrie Crown

Tsuji Takes Valkyrie Crown

By Tony Loiseleur Apr 25, 2009
TOKYO -- Motoki Miyazawa submitted Hiroki Nagaoka with a first-round rear-naked choke in the main event for Cage Force Saturday at Differ Ariake.

Nagaoka scored the early takedown, but Miyazawa quickly reversed him with a sloppy oma plata set-up. Upon taking Nagaoka's back, Miyazawa powered his way into the finishing hold for the tap at 3:20.

The bout served as a competent substitute headliner for a previously scheduled lightweight tilt between Kuniyoshi Hironaka and Marcus Dunahoo. That matchup was pulled when Dunahoo reportedly couldn't make weight.

“As my opponent came in overweight, our fight has been canceled. It is truly unfortunate. I've always fought as a welterweight, and this would have been my lightweight debut. When it was decided who I'd face, I cut about 37.5 pounds, and came here today of the mindset that I'd put my life on the line for this fight. Next time, I'd like to fight someone strong while aiming for the title, and not some weak foreigner who can't even cut weight,” said an irritated Hironaka to the crowd.

Hiroshi Nakamura took a tense decision over Wataru Miki by playing a strategic counter game. Given Nakamura's awkward forward movement when engaging, Nakamura found it difficult to land anything but grazing punches. His attacks eventually brought Miki out of his shell though. Miki began to engage more, but also put himself in range of Nakamura's punches. Miki's best weapon, the flying knee to the body, also did him no favors as Nakamura's overhand right often awaited him in reply. Along with hard, unchecked low kicks, Nakamura took Judges Kenichi Serizawa and Yoshifumi Oyabu's scorecards, while Minoru Toyonaga ruled the bout a draw.

Eriya Matsuda stifled and frustrated Yasunori Kanehara on the feet with low kicks and one-twos, keeping Kanehara at bay for a round and a half. It looked as if Kanehara had nothing for Matsuda, who was busy chopping him down with dozens of unchecked low kicks. However, after a botched Matsuda suplex put Kanehara on top of him in half guard, a flip seemed to switch in Kanehara, who pursued a savage ground-and-pound game from that point forward. Kanehara put Matsuda into a crucifix, and then the fetal position against the cage while wailing on him with big punches. Referee Serizawa called for the stop at 3:03 in the second round.

Wataru Takahashi opened up a large cut over the right eye of Satoshi Nishino to take a TKO victory. After an even opening frame, Takahashi hit a takedown early in the second. As Nishino scuttled back into the cage, Takahashi unleashed with one big elbow, cutting Nishino wide. Referee Serizawa called a temporary halt to have Nishino cleaned up, but ringside doctors would not let the fight continue, ending the bout at the 1:05 mark of the second.

In other bouts:

Akihiro Murayama vs. Ikkei Nagamura – Unanimous Draw 3:00 R3
Shuji Morikawa def. Ken Ogawa – Unanimous Decision 3:00 R3
Ken Taisho def. Tetsuya Yoshioka – TKO (Doctor Stoppage - Swelling) 5:00 R1
Masaki Yokoyama def. Ryo Taguchi – Submission (Kimura) 1:04 R1
<h2>Fight Finder</h2>