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Missed Fists: The Skinny Zombie rises, more

Takamasa “Skinny Zombie” Kiuchi (right) punches Ryosuke Noda (left) at Pancrase x Shooto: Road to ONE Century in Tokyo on Sunday
@Jolassanda1, Twitter

Welcome to the latest edition of Missed Fists where we shine a light on fights from across the globe that may have been overlooked in these hectic times where it seems like there’s an MMA show every other day.

We’re starting off this week with a stop in Tokyo, where Pancrase and Shooto combined to put on a show that hasn’t seen noggins rattled since... well, Bellator 225 a couple of weeks ago.

Man, MMA is messed up.

Takamasa Kiuchi vs. Ryosuke Noda
Kiyotaka Shimizu vs. Taiki Akiba
Asahi PK SaenchaiMuayThaiGym vs. Satsuma Sazanami
Yuki Okano vs. Akira Okada
Taiki Naito vs. Yuta Watanabe
Yu Hirono vs. Yojiro Uchimura

AL: In a cool piece of tri-cross promotion, Japanese companies Pancrase and Shooto teamed up to put on a show ahead of ONE Championship’s ginormous “Century” event this October.

The result was sheer madness. And it was all worth it if only because we learned that Japanese fighter Takamasa Kiuchi, who goes by the nickname “Skinny Zombie,” has been out there all this time.

JM: Let me just say, I fully support there being more Zombies in MMA. Korean Zombie is Gaethje before Gaethje was Gaethje and now Skinny Zombie out here throwing bangers. Sign me up for this.

AL: My life is so much better after this discovery. Ryosuke Noda’s isn’t though. The 23-year-old was 4-0 before literally running into the Skinny Zombie’s fists.

JM: That is just a picture perfect counter right hook. Kiyotaka Shimizu steps off line and bolts Taiki Akiba as he leaps in. Not much more to say on that one other than bravo.

AL: Strong candidate for Walkoff of the Year here. Our parents taught us it’s not polite to point, even more so after punching super hard in the face, I imagine.

This next one is a Muay Thai clip and must be watched with the sound on because my goodness the sound that Asahi PK SaenchaiMuayThaiGym makes with this shot:

JM: I never get tired of the “named after your gym” thing. It’s always fantastic.

More specific to this clip: Ouch. Not just from the sound of that which was clearly horrifying, but also from the way Satsuma Sazanami looked on the canvas. He’s not unconscious, but his body looks like he’s inside a centrifuge and he’s stuck to the ground. Just look at his face! That’s the face of a man who is instantly regretting his entire career.

JM: I gotta say, I did not see that being the end of this one. These two dudes are out there throwing hays and it’s a stepping jab from Yuki Okana that floors Akira Okada. Just goes to show you that precision beats power and speed beats timing or whatever the hell it was Conor used to crack on about.

AL: I love that this is just two meat hammers slugging it out and it comes down to Okana having the better technique. Or Okada trying to ram Okana’s fist with his face. Six of one.

And the last one from this show, a kickboxing clip, Yu Hirono leveling Yojiro Uchimura with a left cross that went straight across Uchimura’s dome.

Sweet...air guitar? Celebration could use some work.

JM: Hirono hit him so hard I thought he might send Uchimura’s mustache flying into the seats. Talk about a clean left hand. As for his air-guitar, OBVIOUSLY he’s actually playing air-bass. Clearly you’ve never competed in an air-band competition.

AL: That would explain why he’s just standing there playing it so cool. He’s feeling da riddum.

Hidetaka Arato vs. Stan Tskitishvili

AL: On Saturday, the wonderfully named Full Metal Dojo promotion held an event in Bangkok, and it featured one of the uglier looking finishes of the week.

AL: And speaking of wonderful names, the man on the bottom being bludgeoned is Stan Tskitishvili, better known as “Stan Gief.”


AL: Sir, this is an MMA website.

Not sure how I feel about this one in regards to the stoppage, not the technique. Judging strikes from crucifix position is so difficult because it usually looks like the fighter on top can’t get enough leverage to land an actual finishing blow, but the fighter on the bottom usually can’t do anything except eat unanswered strikes.

In this case, the unanswered strikes looked a lot more brutal than usual though.

JM: Sorry, but this is a clear example of why knees to the head should be allowed. Homeboy didn’t go out, but it ended the fight. And yes, the fight should’ve been stopped. Stan Gief took 20-plus unanswered shots. He’s gotta do something other than get brained.

Luis Guerrero vs. Fabian Galvan

JM: Sweet finish by Luis Guerrero, from a Lux Fight League show in Monterrey, Mexico (prelims available on YouTube, main card on UFC Fight Pass)

I’ve been thinking about this, is the wheel kick the most exciting highlight in MMA? Walkoff KOs are great, and most jumping KOs are fun, but does anything hit that sweet spot quite like a wheel kick? It’s like the perfect aesthetic blend of spinning attack and head kick.

AL: I’d also argue that they’re underutilized, though it’s not exactly the safest technique or the easiest to land.

JM: As for this one, this looks a lot like the Barboza-Etim wheel kick where only the toes catch him, which is more than enough to get the job done.

Also, I just want it to be known that there was a woman fighting on this card named Laura Zamora and that name is awesome and I hope she goes on to be incredible so we can have more of that name in our lives.

AL: We’ve been spoiled this week in the “Those are great names!” department.

Wang Junguang vs. Jorge Varela

Pancrase and Shooto weren’t the only promotions teaming up this past weekend. Kickboxing entities Wu Lin Feng (China) and Enfusion (The Netherlands) put on a show in Zhenghou, China on Saturday and there’s at least one fighter who probably wishes that the idea never came to fruition.

Jorge Varela, your insides, they are but dust now.

JM: See, I think this proves my point about the wheel kicks. I love me a body attack more than almost anyone, and spinning back-kicks to the ribs are sublime, but you can’t pretend this hits you the same way as Guerrero’s KO. The wheel kick just has that little extra razzle-dazzle.

Serik Razgaliev vs. Sergey Malikov
Magomed Gadzhiev vs. Abdusamad Sangov
Khusein Adamov vs. Ivan Vitasovic

AL: Over in Astrakhan, Russia, there was plenty of fun being had at Gorilla Fighting Championship 16 (which is available for free replay on YouTube).

First, Serik Razgaliev made Sergey Malikov his grappling dummy:

JM: This is the only argument against knees to the head of a grounded opponent. Had they been legal there, we probably wouldn’t have gotten the reverse triangle because Razgaliev would’ve just bludgeoned Malikov instead.

That being said, I loved this submission, in part because whenever I’ve rolled and gotten into this spot, this is how I always finish it too. The arm is just so exposed, I enjoyed that immensely.

Moving on, I’m always happy when GFC has an event because something weird or dope is gonna take place. They never disappoint. Case in point, check out what happens here after Magomed Gadzhiev KOs Abdusamad Sangov.

Have you ever seen a referee pull an unconscious fighter into their guard? Because now you have.

AL: We’ve seen dazed fighters attempt to grapple with referees before, this was a case where the ref took the initiative. “I got you, buddy!”

Not so gentle was Khusein Adamov’s treatment of Ivan Vitasovic.

Barely halfway into the fight and you’re getting dumped and then getting cranked.

JM: That’s just a good old-fashioned Khabib’ing right there.

Spike Carlyle vs. Matthew Colquhoun
Lucas Rota vs. Moses Murrietta
Renan Ferreira vs. Jared Vanderaa

AL: The theme of this week has been great names, so we wouldn’t be doing our duty if we left out this wild spinning backfist KO by Spike Carlyle a.k.a. “The Alpha Ginger.”

He has a dope real name AND nickname!

JM: Aww hell. I may have to retract my wheel kick theory because that’s the best KO of the week.

AL: Luck? Skill? Does it matter?

JM: No look spinning attacks are really more desperation than legitimate technique but that makes them so much more fun. It’s like hitting a 00 bet in roulette.

Was it dumb? Probably, but it worked and now it’s immortal. It’s one of the few times you can see a prayer get answered in real life and in real time.

Shouts to referee Mike Beltran or as you may now know him, Ibarra from Mayans M.C. Good job on the stoppage here and full props to Lucas Rota who looked like he might be in line to get cut from LFA before securing at least another shot with this big win.

AL: We had ourselves a Khabib’ing and now a hearty Wanderlei’ing.

Moses Murietta is no joke, he’s got wins in Bellator and M-1, and Rota just blew through him. In his first two LFA appearances, Rota was 0-2, making this outcome even more surprising.

JM: But can we talk about, dare I say, a potential heavyweight prospect?!?!

AL: *gasp*

JM: Renan Ferreira’s measurables—he’s 6-foot-10—are gonna grab attention, but the man has fast hands for someone that lengthy and he backed it up with a ground game. Heavyweight prospects are few, far between, and almost always wrestling or football castoffs. Maybe we’ve got ourselves a unicorn here.

AL: If Ferreira’s name sounds familiar, this is his second appearance in Missed Fists. His first was one he’d probably like to forget. Regardless, he’s righted the ship and is now officially on prospect watch.


Cristian Gomez vs. Anibal Pedrozo

AL: Let’s close out the week with a bonus reader submission from Monday (that reader being frequent Missed Fists contributor @Barrelelapierna). Here’s Cristian Gomez crushing Anibal Pedrozo with a spinning backfist from a show in Argentina.

Soak it in, Cristian.

JM: I’m not gonna lie, I didn’t even know we had readers. I thought you and I just did this every week to goof off on the company dime.

AL: This answers so many questions.


What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?

This poll is closed

  • 15%
    The Skinny Zombie strikes!
    (28 votes)
  • 9%
    Hidetaka Arato grounds-and-knees Stan Gief
    (17 votes)
  • 10%
    Luis Guerrero spinning and winning
    (19 votes)
  • 14%
    Wang Junguang’s gut shot KO kick
    (27 votes)
  • 48%
    The Alpha Ginger’s hail mary back elbow
    (89 votes)
  • 1%
    Other (leave comment below)
    (3 votes)
183 votes total Vote Now

If you know of a recent fight or event that you think may have been overlooked or a promotion that could use some attention, please let us know on Twitter @JedKMeshew and @AlexanderKLee using the hashtag #MissedFists.

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