And in a snap, the bantamweight division is upset again! Manel "Prodígio" Kape (15-4) rings in the New Year with a second-round knockout of Kai Asakura - his third such stoppage in a row! The Angolan incendiary is RIZIN's new champ! #RIZIN20 #RIZINFF pic.twitter.com/0yKjaG16AR— Kyle Johnson (@VonPreux) December 31, 2019
Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and ring rarities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.
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TOTAL NUMBER OF RIZIN EVENTS: 23
Rizin Fighting Federation ended 2019 in dramatic fashion with Rizin 20, giving fans three title fights and a lightweight tournament in one night. The event featured a quick soccer kick finish, the Rizin Grim Reaper doing what he does best and sweet revenge in a trilogy match.
Make This An Annual Series: After Rizin 20 and Bellator 237 came to an end, five bouts pitting Rizin and Bellator MMA competitors against one another saw Bellator win 3-2. The unofficial sixth of Rena Kubota vs. two-time Bellator competitor Lindsey VanZandt allowed Rizin to tie up the score.
The Great Knockout Kaper: Earning his 14th finish across his 15 career victories, Manel Kape earned the vacant Rizin bantamweight strap by knocking out Kai Asakura in a rematch.
Six And No: The loss was Asakura's first in a Rizin ring, having won his first six and in so doing becoming one of a small number of fighters to go unbeaten after six bouts in Rizin. The only fighters who are still unbeaten in Rizin competition are Gabi Garcia, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic and Asakura’s brother Mikuru Asakura.
Fraternal Link Severed: This event was the third where both Asakura brothers competed and the first where both did not emerge victorious at night's end.
Ham On Ham Violence: Exacting revenge by beating the woman that defeated her twice, Seo Hee Ham became the second atomweight champ in Rizin history after capturing a split verdict over Ayaka Hamasaki.
Not A Cage Thing: The loss for Hamasaki was her first in her 22-fight career that did not take place inside the Invicta Fighting Championships cage.
Rockin' Rena: Kubota picked up her ninth win in the Rizin ring when she stopped VanZandt. With the stoppage, she set the record or extended her lead for the following records for female Rizin fighters: most wins (nine), most bouts (11), most knockouts (five) and most finishes (six).
Pass The Baton: When VanZandt threw in the baton to stop the fight at 4:42 of Round 3, Kubota earned the second-latest finish in company history. Only Mamoru Uoi's 4:47 knockout of Kana Hyatt at Rizin 16 came later.
Corners Should Do This More Often: VanZandt's corner is the fifth in Rizin history to surrender for a fighter and the fourth to do so mid-round.
Ring Out! Taking a controversial decision over Patricky Freire that saw Freire tumble out of the ring and injure himself, Tofiq Musayev earned only the second win on the scorecards in his career. The 2019 lightweight tournament champ now sports a finish rate of 89 percent after this event.
Bader Vs. Jiri, Make It Happen : Jiri Prochazka earned his 11th win in the Rizin ring by smashing C.B. Dollaway in under two minutes. His victory extends his lead for the most in organizational history.
Will He Stay With Rizin? The bout between Prochazka and Dollaway was for the light heavyweight strap, making Prochazka the first male fighter to successfully defend his title. Hamasaki previously defended her atomweight belt in June at Rizin 16.
Jiri-Jacked: The knockout was Prochazka's 10th stoppage as a Rizin competitor, further lifting his record for the most finishes and most knockouts (9) in organizational history.
96 Percent: In his 26 career victories, Prochazka has stopped 25 of those opponents, including each of his last eight opponents. Ninety-two percent of his finishes have come in the opening frame.
Simon Says 'Tap': Simon Biyong became the fifth fighter in Rizin history to force his opponent to tap out to strikes. Vitaly Shemetov surrendered to punches in the second frame.
Smashed Brothers: Both Shemetov and his brother Sergey Shemetov competed this week in Japan, with S. Shemetov fighting at Bellator 237. Both men lost by stoppage.
6,500 Miles From Angola To Saitama: Needing 97 seconds to snatch up a guillotine and submit Yuki Motoya, Patrick Mix scored the third-quickest submission in company history.
A Pitbull In Japan: Stopping Luiz Gustavo Felix dos Santos in 28 seconds, Freire picked up the sixth-fastest knockout in Rizin history.
I Like It Over Here: The stoppage for Bellator mainstay Freire came via soccer kick, good for the fourth soccer kick-related knockout in Rizin history.
Never Say Never Again: Coming into Rizin 20, VanZandt (nine fights) and Gustavo (11 fights) had never been finished, Hamasaki (21 fights) and Suwanan Boonsorn (six fights) had never lost on the scorecards and VanZandt and Mix (12 fights) had never competed outside of the U.S.
A Loss In Any Language: Motoya made his walk to the ring accompanied by Eminem's "Lose Yourself" and lost by first-round submission. As a walkout song over in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, that track accompanies a recorded winning percentage of .300 -- one of the lowest in company history for a song with over 20 uses.