Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Dream - Fight for Japan NYE 2011: Fedor and Aoki Meet Again!

Shinya Aoki attempts a flying submission on Fedor Emelianenko during an April 2009 exhibition match.
Pic Props: ESPN.go.com
Real Entertainment and Inoki Genome Federation have teamed up to present Dream's 2011 New Year's Eve event, titled "How Are You?! New Year - 2011". The event continues the New Years Eve tradition that was previously carried out as "Dynamite" by K-1 under the FEG banner. This year's NYE show is a masterpiece in the making (okay, I'm exaggerating, but it sounded good), pitting some solid names.

Among those featured on the card are two popular MMA names -- Fedor Emelianenko and Shinya Aoki. Fedor just put the breaks on a three-fight loosing streak, notching a unanimous decision over well-traveled Jeff Monson. Meanwhile, Aoki has lead a 6-fight unbeaten trend, securing notable victories over Tatsuya Kawajiri and Rob McCullough along the way. Emelianenko is prepping for a possible bout with Olympic Judo gold-medalist Satoshi Ishii and Aoki will test his flying submissions in a rematch against former Sengoku lightweight titlist, Satoru Kitaoka.

The last time I recall seeing Fedor and Aoki on the same card was on the M-1 Challenge 14 card back in April of 2009. At the time both fighters held highly touted, yet controversial WAMMA titles in their respective weight divisions. The two fighters squared off in an exhibition match which, after some tossing around, ended with Fedor catching a drastically outweighed Aoki in an Achilles lock to secure the 'big' win!

To think, that was only 2 1/2 years ago - well before anyone ever thought about a Zuffa-Strikeforce buyout, or the idea of ever seeing professional MMA on network television. My, how times have changed (I'm scaring myself- I sound like my Grandfather)!

But times have changed indeed, and if Mayan Calendar prophecies hold true, what does the prophetic future hold for mixed martial arts???

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