This is the fight Takafumi Otsuka really needed to win.
Especially after losing to the bantamweight King of Pancrase Shintaro Ishiwatari in just little over three minutes. He knew this very well. On day before the fight, after the weigh-in, DEEP current champion said, "I lowered the value of 'champion'. I went through a heart-searching."
So, the pressure was more on the champion.
However, Otsuka came through.
He defended his title in a convincing manner.
Just like their first encounter, both Otsuka and Toshiaki Kitada engaged in a takedown war in the beginning, Otsuka clearly had an advantage. He landed right left combination and took Kitada down with a single-leg. The challenger countered with a guillotine choke then eventually stood back up but Otsuka continued pushing the pace with his superior striking.
In the second round, Kitada shot in more than few times but Otsuka sprawled and defended every single one of them. And, the final round was all Otsuka. Took Kitada down, again, with a single leg. When Kitada tried to stand back up, Otsuka got on the back, picked up, and slammed a 34-year old veteran to the mat. From this point, it was all Otsuka. He kept a top position and dropped series of heavy fists.
In backstage, after the fight, Otsuka said, "I don't think this win would dispel (the loss to Ishiwatari), but I can re-start now. I would like to go (to UFC) but that loss to Ishiwatari is huge. I would like to fight him again. So, right now, I am thinking about the way to get there."
Saturday, May 16th, 2015
At Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japa
The Main Event – DEEP Bantamweight Title Bout 5 min / 3R
Takafumi Otsuka (Japan / AACC) vs Toshiaki Kitada (Japan / Paraestra Chiba)
Winner: 3R Takafumi Otsuka by Decision (5-0)
Co-Main – DEEP VS ROAD FC – Flyweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Yuki Motoya (Japan / CB Impact) vs Jong Heon Chae (Korea / Team Sanai)
Winner: 1R 2'08" Yuki Motoya by Submission (rear naked choke)
8th Match – DEEP VS ROAD FC – Flyweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Tatsumitsu Wada (Japan / Yoshida Dojo) vs Gyu Hwa Kim (Korea / Pohang BD Fight)
Winner: 3R 2'24" Tatsumitsu Wada by TKO
7th Match – DEEP Lightweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Daisuke Nakamura (Japan / Uzukido Hompo) vs Yuki Okano (Japan / Mach Dojo)
Winner: 3R Yuki Okano by Decision (0-3)
6th Match – DEEP Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Makoto Kamaya (Japan / Honey Trap) vs Fuhito "Hashan" Hasegawa (Japan / NEX)
Winner: 2R 2'12" Makoto Kamaya by Submission (guillotine choke)
5th Match – DEEP Welterweight bout 5 min / 3R
Yusaku Tsukumo (Japan / Wajiutsu Keishu-kai Yokohama Dojo) vs Takeshi Sato (Japan / Tribe Tokyo M.M.A.)
Winner: 1R 2'09" Takeshi Sato by TKO (doctor stoppage – cut on the forehead from elbow shot)
4th Match – Lightweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Takuya "Kennosuke" Oyama (Japan / INFIGHT JAPAN) vs Seita Katsuki (Japan / Souten-juku Yokohama)
Winner: 1R 4'02" Takuya "Kennosuke" Oyama by Submission (rear naked choke)
3rd Match – Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Tomohiko Hori (Japan / Freelance) vs Yuki Takano (Japan / Wajiutsu Keishu-kai HEARTS)
Winner: 1R 3'16" Tomohiko Hori by Submission (triangle choke)
2nd Match – DEEP Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Hirotaka Miyakawa (Japan / ALLIANCE – Team Yude Tamago) vs Ryuji Akijima (Japan / Club Barbarian)
Winner: 2R Hirotaka Miyakawa by Decision (2-0)
1st Match – Flyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yuma Horiuchi (Japan / TANG TANG FIGHT CLUB) vs Yudai Ishida (Japan / Grappling Shoot Boxers Nagoya)
Winner: 2R 3'04" Yuma Horiuchi by Submission (guillotine choke)
Opening Fight – Flyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Naoki Inoue (Japan / Hakushin-kai) vs Kenji Yamanaka (Japan / PUREBRED Omiya)
Winner: 1R 2'21" Naoki Inoue by Submission (rear naked choke)
Opening Fight – Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yutaka Shimoda (Japan / Reversal Gym Shinjuku Me, We) vs Takuya Kanai (Japan / Honey Trap)
Winner: 1R 4'00" Takuya Kanai by TKO (referee stoppage – punches)
Report by Shu Hirata
Photo courtesy of Bout Review (www.boutreview.com)