DREAM.11 – 10/06/2009: What is Going to Happen to the Lightweight Title? Who Else is Coming to Strikeforce?

We all know that Shinya Aoki is challenging Joachim Hansen in the DREAM lightweight title bout, then Tatsuya Kawajiri will get a shot at the winner on New Year’s Eve.

Then of course, there is an "alliance" with Strikeforce.

According to the official announcement made in Japan, Scott Coker, the CEO of Strikeforce has stated, "Collaboration in various things to achieve a unified event quality, combined effort in discovering fighters, championship matches to unify both titles in each weight class, and in addition, to promote a show with both a hexagon cage and the ring" which is quite different from what was reported in the states but that is very common when it comes to Japanese MMA so we can just leave it on the side.

The most important point, especially for DREAM, in this deal is Fedor.

To maintain their superiority in the Japanese market, the presence of Fedor in their roster is super crucial.

Right now everyone knows that Fedor signed a multi-fight deal with Strikeforce, so by forming an "alliance" with Strikeforce, DREAM can basically send a message to the fans that "Fedor does still belong to us."

Sure Mitsuhiro Ishida came to fight in the hexagon, and also the referee from DREAM, Yuji Shimada. So it sure does look like something more to come in the future, such as Aoki, Sakurai, and Kawajiri.

But I wouldn’t hold my breath on it. Not for awhile.

If Aoki beats Hansen then he is fighting Kawajiri so that makes both of them not available till next year.
And the truth of the matter was, for DREAM, dispatching Ishida was an easy task. After all, Ishida in the Shooto show in May, just got demolished by Mizuto Hirota, the lightweight champion of Sengoku, the biggest rival of DREAM in the Japanese market. He was also no match against Caol Uno when they faced off in May 2008. Therefore the value of Ishida in the Japanese market was actually low, and with a limited number of DREAM shows till the rest of the year, it was perfect that DREAM found a spot for Ishida where he could fight on TV and earn decent money.

This leads to the ultimate question, so who else, which other DREAM fighters will we get to see in the Strikeforce show?

Jacare was signed with Strikeforce before this "alliance" was revealed to the public so apparently he is not part of the "exchange" between two promotions. Same with Gegard Mousasi.

So who else is coming?

As you can see on the line-up of the next DREAM show, and the DEEP show taking place this weekend, many top popular Japanese names are all fighting meaning nothing is set in stone after September.

Well, but after all, that maybe really doesn’t matter to both promotions.

Strikeforce has enough fighters under their contract and face it, they do really have Fedor.

On the other end, DREAM should be happy as long as they can claim that they still got Fedor for the Japanese fans.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009
At Yokohama Arena, Kanagawa, Japan

Doors Open – 17:00
Fight Starts – 18:00

Confirmed Cards (Subject to Change);

DREAM Featherweight (63 kg) GP Final 10 min / 1R, 5 min / 2R

The winner of semi-final #1 vs. The winner of semi-final #2

DREAM Lightweight Title Bout 10 min / 1R, 5 min / 2R

Joachim Hansen (Norway / Front Line Academy) vs. Shinya Aoki (Japan / Paraestra Tokyo)

DREAM Featherweight (63 kg) Reserve Bout 10 min / 1R, 5 min / 2R
DJ taiki (Japan / Freelance) vs. Kazuyuki Miyata (Japan / Brave)

DREAM Featherweight (63 kg) Semi-Final Bout 10 min / 1R, 5 min / 2R
Joe Warren (USA / Team Quest) vs. Bibiano Fernandez (Brazil / Revolution Fight team)

DREAM Featherweight (63 kg) GP Final 10 min / 1R, 5 min / 2R
Hiroyuki Takaya (Japan / Takaya Gundan) vs. Hideo Tokoro (Japan / Team ZST)

Also Scheduled to Fight:

Super Hulk Tournament –

Gegard Mousasi (Holland / Team Mousasi – Red Devil International)
Hong-man Choi (Korea / Freelance)
Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou (Cameroon / Team Quest)
Minowa-man (Japan / Freelance)

Ticket Prices:

VIP – 100,000 yen / RS – 22,000 yen / Stand S – 10,000 yen / Stand A – 5,000 yen

Report by Shu Hirata
Photo by Yoshinori Ihara (boutreview.com)

PIC: Three fighters in the featherweight GP. (from left to right) Hiroyuki Takaya, Hideo Tokoro, and Kazuyuk Miyata.