Rena Kubota started New Year's Eve off with a bang. Or, more accurately, a tap.
The Japanese shootboxing star made her MMA debut with a gorgeous flying armbar submission over Jleana Valentino in the second round of the Rizin Fighting Federation 2 opener at Saitama Super Arena in Japan.
The two engaged in an uneventful first round, but the popular Kubota drew big cheers from the crowd after the submission victory. Kubota, who had Invicta FC women's atomweight champion Ayaka Hamasaki in her corner, is well-known in Japan and one of the country's best female shootboxers. Valentino was also making her MMA debut.