Kleber Koike rode his submission expertise to a RIZIN title win.
The former KSW titleholder challenged two-promotion featherweight king Juntaro Ushiku, the 145-pound champion in DEEP and RIZIN, in the main event of RIZIN 39 Sunday in Fukuoka, Japan, and put him away with a triangle choke 89 seconds into the second stanza.
“I’ll catch [you],” Koike yelled immediately after locking the choke, before Ushiku tapped. “I came here to become champion! I’m not here to play!”
A teammate of RIZIN lightweight champion Roberto Satoshi at Bonsai Jiu-Jitsu, Koike now rides a 6-0 streak under the company banner with six submission finishes.
RIZIN 39 also featured some nasty finishes in the undercard, with Koji Takeda lifting Zach Zane off the ground to secure an armbar, and Yoshiki Nakahara taking advantage of the rule set to stop Akira Haraguchi with soccer kicks.
Check the complete RIZIN 39 results below.
Kleber Koike def. Juntaro Ushiku via submission (triangle choke) – Round 2, 1:29
Tsuyoshi Kamiyama def. Janos Csukas via TKO (punches and knees) – Round 2, 0:30
Yusuke Yachi def. Boyd Allen via unanimous decision
Koji Takeda def. Zach Zane via submission (armbar) – Round 1, 3:35
Sho Usami def. Shinji Sasaki via TKO (punches) – Round 3, 2:33
Daichi Abe def. Yukinari Tamura via unanimous decision
Takahiro Ashida def. Hirotaka Nakada via unanimous decision
Yoshiki Nakahara def. Akira Haraguchi via TKO (punches and soccer kicks) – Round 1, 2:37
Motonobu Tezuka def. Mehman Mamedov via TKO (corner stoppage) – Round 1, 4:33