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Gegard Mousasi Shows Off His Striking, Shinya Aoki Does Not

Two mixed martial artists had very different results when they took on kickboxers at the New Year's Eve Dynamite!! event in Japan, as Gegard Mousasi put on a striking clinic in beating K-1 heavyweight champion Kyotaro, while Shinya Aoki was knocked out by Yuichiro Nagashima.

Mousasi is first and foremost an MMA fighter, but he showed once again that he has K-1-level striking. Mousasi was nothing short of sensational in beating Kyotaro, knocking down the Japanese champ in the second round with a beautiful combination of punches. It was the second time Mousasi has beaten an experienced K-1 veteran under K-1 rules on a New Year's Eve card in Japan; Mousasi also beat the Japanese kickboxer Musashi two years ago.

Aoki, however, was not so fortunate in his special "mixed rules" bout with Nagashima. The first round of the fight was a three-minute round under kickboxing rules, and Aoki turned that round into a farce, repeatedly trying flying kicks that left him on the ground, where Nagashima couldn't attack him. When Aoki survived that first round, everyone expected him to easily submit Nagashima in the second round, which was scheduled for five rounds under Aoki's preferred MMA rules. Instead, Nagashima charged at Aoki at the opening bell and knocked him cold with a flying knee. The MMA portion of the fight lasted all of four seconds.

The loss is a huge embarrassment to Aoki and ends a disappointing year for him that also saw him come to America and get whipped by Gilbert Melendez in a Strikeforce lightweight title fight. But for Mousasi, who likewise got whipped on that same Strikeforce card, beating Kyotaro under K-1 rules is an impressive accomplishment, and a sign that he should be ready for a big 2011.

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