Wanderlei Silva, Josh Barnett, Mirko Cro Cop and Rodrigo Minotauro are the finalists of the Pride Open Weigh GP, which took place in Tokyo, Japan, on Saturday, July 1. Rodrigo Minotauro Nogueira need three rounds to defeat Fabricio Werdum, but was superior and defeated the BJJ black belt by unanimous judges decision....
Wanderlei Silva, Josh Barnett, Mirko Cro Cop and Rodrigo Minotauro are the finalists of the Pride Open Weigh GP, which took place in Tokyo, Japan, on Saturday, July 1. Rodrigo Minotauro Nogueira need three rounds to defeat Fabricio Werdum, but was superior and defeated the BJJ black belt by unanimous judges decision. The other Brazilian in the Grabd Prix, Wanderlei Silva rocked Kazuyuki Fujita even though he had a broken rib and KOd him in the first round. Mirko Cro Cop FIlipovic had no troubles with Hidehiko Yoshida and punished the Japanese idol with low kicks and completing the party, Josh Barnett submitted Mark Hunt with a kimura in the first round.
Nakao Yoshihiro defeated Lee Eun Su by referee stoppage in 1R;
Nakao Yoshihiro imposed a hard time for his opponent and had no troubles defeating Lee Eun Su. The victory came by referee stoppage in early round 1.
Vitor Belfort KOd Yoshiki Takahashi 1R.
Brazilian BJJ black belt Vítor Belfort needed a little less than 30 seconds to apply a prefect left cross on Japanese fighter Yoshiki Takahashi, who was hit straight in the chin and collapsed immediately. Belfort was making his return to the rings of Japan after one year away from the land of the rising sun. In his last presentation, he was defeated by Dutch fighter Alistair Overeem by guillotine choke and two weeks ago, he suffered another loss to Overeem in Strikeforce. Now the Brazilian phenomenon points to the future: "People will have the torpedo back!", said Belfort after the fight.
Rogério Minotouro Nogueria defeated Alistair Overeem by TKO (towel) 2R;
Besides being a little tired and with no fight rhythm, BJJ black belt Rogério Minotouro did a good job against Alistair Overeem and defeated him by TKO, after Dutch fighters corner threw the towel. Rogério had a hard time with the low-kicks applied by Overeem in the first round, but adjusted well put him down on the mat and passed his guard. In the second round, Minotouro returned with more pressure and after applying a great jab, straight and left cross sequence on the chin of Overeem, felt the time was right and took advantage of it. That moment was the key to Overeems corner protecting their fighter and throwing in the towel to end the fight.
Kazuhiro Nakamura submitted Evangelista Cyborg with a key-lock in 1R;
Japanese Kazuhiro Nakamura did not give any chances to Pride newcomer Evangelista Cyborg, from Chute Boxe. From the beginning of the fight, the Japanese fighter ruled the match taking Cyborg down, and in the sequence, landed solid punches from the half-guard. Nakamura passed the Brazilians guard and punished him from the side, while Cyborg looking for the sweep. After opening up some space to punch, Nakamura locked in a key-lock, but Cyborg would not tap out. Nakamura stayed patient and adjusted the submission accordingly and left no alternative but for his opponent to tap out.
Rodrigo Minotauro defeated Fabricio Werdum by unanimous referees decision; (GP)
In a real show of technique and BJJ, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belts Rodrigo Minotauro and Fabrício Werdum put on a technical clinic. Besides spending most of the time fighting on the feet, Minotauro caught Werdum with a strong left jab, which dropped Werdum. Werdum attempted a few knees from the clinch, but got knocked down for the second time, this time with a right straight punch. Minotauro also put Werdum down later, but didnt do too much. Showing he was still alive in the fight, Werdum opened a cut in Minotauros face, but even that cut was not enough to impressive the judges.
In the second round, they studied more and Werdum adopted a different strategy. Werdum put Minotauro down twice with a single-leg, but was not able to avoid Minotauro sweeping and the fight returned on the feet. Minotauro once again took advantage with his aggressiveness. In the last round, Werdum tried to take Minotauro down with take downs, and In the first attempt, he took the opponent down with an ouchi-gari, but Rodrigo escaped once again and returned to the feet. In the second take down, Minotauro attempted a guillotine choke on Werdum from the half guard, but Werdum was able escape from it. Minotauro swept, applied a few blows from the guard and the fight returned on the feet once more. In the end, Werdum got another single leg and gave his best in a kata-gatame from the half guard. But once again, staying calm, Minotauro swept his opponent. The judges had no doubts and pointed to Rodrigo Minotauro as the winner by unanimous decision.
Wanderlei Silva KOd Kazuyuki Fujita in 1R; (GP)
Pride middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva showed in the ring the reason he is on top. With an excellent game on the feet, he exchanged punches with the heavier Japanese Kazuyuki Fujita. In a very exciting start to the bout, Silva hit Fujita with a straight punch, which scattered Fujia. Accepting the stand up game, Fujita did his best on the feet, but he wasnt good enough and after suffering at the hands of a sequence of punches, courtesy of Silva, Fujita gave up his back. Wanderlei applied the pressure with punches, knees and a soccer kick. Fujita grabbed Wanderleis legs and took him down, and passed his guard, but Wanderlei quickly retook his guard and surprisingly went for an arm-lock. Fujita resisted and didnt tap out, eventually the fight got stagnant on the ground and referee punished Silva with an yellow card for his efforts. From there both of fighters studied each other carefully and once again exchanged punches. Silva launched another flurry, which again dropped Fujita down to the floor and fired off five consecutive soccer kicks and the 5th one spurred the referee to stop the fight. Silva commented after the fight saying My rib was injured for three weeks, but I didnt give up and came to fight tonight. I thank you for asking for me at the GP. You guys are wonderful. Pride is number one! Ill return in September to show my game once again for you.
Josh Barnett submitted Mark Hunt with a kimura in 1R; (GP)
The only American in the tournament, Josh Barnett didnt give any opportunity for New Zealander Mark Hunt to impose his daunting stand up game. After rocking Pride heavyweight champion Emmelianenko Fedors brother Aleksander in the first phase of the GP with a great key-lock, Barnett used a kimura to beat the heavier Mark Hunt and advance to the final phase of the tournament.
Mirko Cro Cop KOd Hidehiko Yoshida in 1R; (GP)
After defeating Ikuhisa Minowa (Freelance) by TKO in the first phase of the tournament, Croatian Mirko Cro Cop Filipovic was the last fighter to confirm his presence at the finals of the Open Weight GP. Filipovic ruled his match against Yoshida with powerful low-kicks, which severely hurt the Japanese fighters left leg. Aside from Yoshidas two takedown attempts, which Cro Cop did a great job defending, Yoshida had little offence to offer. On the feet, Yoshida was an easy target for Cro Cop, who didnt need to use his high left kick. After taking a low-kick, Yoshida fell down and then stood up again, only to absorb another low-kick and was not able to return to fight, thus being defeated by TKO.