Live on FX: Lightweights: Takanori ‘The Fireball Kid’ Gomi (32-8, 1NC) vs. Eiji Mitsuoka (18-7-2)
This should be a battle that showcases two very different styles. Gomi is a heavy handed striker, while Mitsuoka is a submission specialist, that’s only been knocked out once. Gomi has struggled since joining the UFC, suffering submission losses to top competitors like Kenny Florian, Nate Diaz, and Clay Guida. Mitsuoka is making his UFC debut after submitting five of his last eight opponents. Gomi is the more experienced fighter that has taken on much better opponents than Mitsuoka, but he’s proven to have a weakness for submissions. Let’s see which way this one goes…
Round 1: Gomi comes out with an unorthodox low fighting style with a hanging right arm and slipping it as a jab. Mitsuoka lands a sharp jab on Gomi’s chin, and follows with a couple whiffing hooks. Mitsuoka backs Gomi into the fence and Gomi responds with a couple powerful knees to the body to square back up. Gomi continues to measure his distance, this time with a hanging left arm slipping the jab. Gomi’s unorthodox style causes him to slip after he whiffs a hook and Mitsuoka tries, but fails to capitalize. They trade some jabs and Gomi lands a solid body kick. Mitsuoka circles and lands a powerful jab; Gomi crumbles as if he’s out. Mitsuoka immediately mounts his back and locks in a mounted triangle from behind. Gomi is trapped. :10 left in the round, and Gomi can’t even move; the ref is moving in. There’s the horn. This was a close round, but Mitsuoka pulled it out at the end.
Round 2: The fighters immediately trade a series of quick jabs and hooks. Gomi stalks Mitsuoka around the octagon and into the fence. Gomi is going to town on Mitsuoka’s head with a series of power blows. Mitsuoka looks spent, and dives down for a single leg, backing Gomi into the fence. Gomi senses weakness as Mitsuoka curls up to defend a series of hammer fists. Mitsuoka is cornered and can only cover his head as Gomi continues to hammer on his head from the side. There’s no response from Mitsuoka. Gomi asks the ref if he’s awake while he keeps pounding on the side of his skull. The ref finally steps in to save Mitsuoka and calls it at 2:21 of the 2nd round.
Winner: Gomi (TKO, Punches; 2:21 of the 2nd round)