You may not know who Tadas Jonkus or Giuseppe Patane are, but that doesn't matter here. They met in the ring this weekend in Trieste, Italy. A bit into the first round, the two met and started exchanging blows. Jonkus proceeded to knock Patane not just out, but out of the ring. Patane fell through the ropes and dropped out of the ring onto the floor below. Check the video out:
The internet is a marvelous place where international borders mean little like they used to. If something happened in Japan ten years ago, eagerly reading the results online and waiting for a few weeks before you could have someone send you a DVD (or even -- GASP -- VHS tape) of the event to check out for yourself was commonplace. Now there are ways to stream events live as they happen, and if they aren't available to be streamed, they are shared around the internet at the blink of an eye. That is magic, folks. As someone who has been ordering K-1 and Japanese MMA tapes since the mid-90's, it is mind-boggling how much better we have it now and how easy it is to follow your favorite athletes.
All of this is a lead-in to this; Inoki Genome Federation is Antonio Inoki's pro wrestling promotion in Japan. The catch is, Inoki has a good relationship with many professional fighters and he fancies himself one of the true pioneers of Mixed Martial Arts. This means his brand of pro wrestling is a lot different from when he promoted New Japan Pro Wrestling and more resembles the style that he attempted to introduce to New Japan that nearly ran the company into the ground; Shoot Style. It is the kind of action that blurs reality from fiction and is entertaining. Sit back and watch as your favorite K-1 and MMA fighters go toe-to-toe in pre-scripted drama that is pro wrestling. Also note that wow, Nagashima is big, one source has claimed he is as high as 90kg. That is 198 pounds. [source]
Yuichiro "Jienotsu" Nagashima vs. Bob Sapp
Atsushi Sawada vs. Minowaman
Peter Aerts/Bobby Lashley vs. Kazuyuki Fujita/Kendo KaShin
Let's be honest, after a year without K-1's usual Heavyweight tournament there has been a lack of the top Heavyweights in the world going head-to-head, but It's Showtime is looking to change that come January. What is possibly the last Kickboxing bout of both Badr Hari and Gokhan Saki should provide fireworks for fans across the world. It's Showtime went ahead and released a trailer for this upcoming clash of the titans and you can view it here.
Female fighting in Japan is something different entirely. It has a deeper meaning and has roots that go back many years, as the Japanese have always had a fascination with women in combat. It was evident in how popular Women's Pro Wrestling was in the 80's or how Women's MMA picked up in the 90's and is still creating great prospects, and the same can be said for Kickboxing. Erika Kamimura is young, really young, and she is already a beast. Her coming out party to the world was an exhibition bout against multi-time Shoot Boxing Girls S-Cup Champion RENA where Erika absolutely brought it. They recently had a rematch where RENA narrowly escaped defeat, but regardless, Erika has arrived.
Watch this awesome highlight of her and decide for yourself. [source]