UFC 144 Edgar vs. Henderson
Tokyo, Japan: Edgar vs. Henderson
At UFC 144, two former middleweights collide, but it will be at welterweight. For Yoshihiro Akiyama, it is his first fight at 170 lbs, but he has always been a smaller middleweight. This is a pivotal fight for Akiyama, as he has lost 3 of his last 4, and he hopes the drop to a more suitable weight class will give him the push he needs. Akiyama, a world class judoka, is a great grappler with amazing throws, but it is devastating power that sets him apart. Yoshihiro, at welterweight, will have the power to KO anyone and will look to keep the fight standing, as his next opponent is Jake Shields. Jake is one of the best Jiu Jitsu practitioners in MMA and will try his best to submit Akiyama. Both fighters are coming off of devastating 1st round KO’s and they will each be hungry for a victory. Yoshihiro is an interesting personality in the fight world, as he does it for the love of competition and to challenge himself. Akiyama has a modeling career, is an international singing sensation, and has a personal brand that extends well beyond fighting. Yoshihiro is one of the most well know celebrities in Japan and his reach is cross promotional and multifaceted. Fighting for the UFC in his home country is a very exciting prospect and Akiyama will certainly be the crowd favorite. Yoshihiro will be well dressed as he walks to the Octagon wearing the Hayabusa Pro Jiu Jitsu Gi. Tradition is important in Japanese culture and walking out in the Hayabusa Pro Jiu Jitsu Gi reflects Akiyama’s dedication to heritage and history. Hayabusa is proud that Yoshihiro Akiyama chooses to train and fight wearing Hayabusa.
Not too many athletes can stare down a six fight losing streak and find the drive and determination to get back on the winning track. Mark ‘Super Samoan’ Hunt is that kind of rare fighter. Hunt lost his professional debut, won six in a row, lost his next six fights, including his UFC debut, and then dug deep and won the next two. Mark will look to make it three in a row at UFC 144 in Japan. The Japanese fans have embraced Hunt as one of their own because of his warrior spirit, love of combat, and no quit attitude. ‘Super Samoan’ is a powerful, durable heavyweight and will need to use all his skills against Cheick Kongo. Kongo is a great striker and has improved his takedowns and takedown defence. Hunt, who has a history of submission losses, has worked tirelessly on his takedown defence and will look to keep the fight standing. Kongo is a great striker, but Mark has the ability to absorb a superhuman amount of punishment and keep moving forward. Hunt, a K1 World Grand Prix Champion, will be looking for the KO in this heavyweight showdown. Mark ‘Super Samoan’ Hunt, again, chooses to train and compete in Hayabusa. Hayabusa is excited to see Hunt fight!