UFC Fight Night: Hunt vs Nelson (UFN 52) took place on Saturday, September 20, 2014 from the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
The main event for the UFC’s return to Japan was a 5-round matchup between top 10 heavyweights Mark Hunt and Roy Nelson.
Check out our biggest winners and losers from UFN 52 below.
Myles Jury: The undefeated Myles Jury took on MMA legend Takanori Gomi in the Saitama Super Arena at UFN 52. Takanori Gomi made a name for himself within this arena and throughout Japan and was widely considered to be the best lightweight in the world at one point in time. The 25-year-old Jury absolutely decimated Gomi in front of the Japanese crowd. Jury looked flawless and got the TKO victory over Gomi at 1:32 of Round 1. Coming into this fight Jury was already the 9th ranked lightweight in the UFC and he made sure to make a statement by being the first person to stop Gomi via strikes in his 46-fight career. Jury will surely get a top-level fighter next and will try to continue his ascent of the stacked lightweight division.
Kyoji Horiguchi: Kyoji Horiguchi entered UFN 52 as the 14th ranked flyweight in the UFC. He was also on a seven-fight win streak with two of those wins coming in the UFC. At only 23 years old and possessing a record of 13-1, Horiguchi is one of the biggest prospects within the flyweight divison and he would prove why. At UFN 52, he would take on the 9-3 Jon Delos Reyes. Horiguchi would not waste anytime; the very first strike that he landed was a kick to the body that dropped Reyes. He would control the entire fight and show off his power and explosiveness throughout. Horiguchi would ultimately finish the fight by TKO at 3:48 of Round 1 and improve his record to 14-1. Now with a 3-0 record in the UFC, Horiguchi is quickly climbing the ranks of the flyweight division and should get a top 10 flyweight in his next fight.
Yoshihiro Akiyama: Yoshihiro Akiyama entered UFN 52 on a four fight losing streak in the UFC as well as coming off of more than a two year layoff. Akiyama took on the returning Amir Sadollah in front of his home country of Japan. Akiyama dominated the fight from start to finish and picked up the unanimous decision win over Sadollah with all three judges scoring it 30-27. Akiyama snapped his four fight losing streak and picked up his first win since the historic UFC 100 card back in July of 2009. It could not have been a much better homecoming for Akiyama as he looked impressive in front of his home crowd.
Takenori Sato: Takenori Sato entered UFN 52 coming off of a vicious first round loss to Erick Silva in his UFC debut back in February. Sato would face a very long and rangy welterweight in Hyun Gyu Lim. Lim was also coming into the night off of a loss to Tarec Saffiedine back on the very first card of 2014. Sato, the most recent Welterweight King of Pancrase, was looking to avoid getting off to an 0-2 start in his UFC career, but things would not play out the way he would have liked. Lim would viciously knock out Sato by elbows at only 1:18 of Round 1. This brings Sato’s UFC record to 0-2 with two knockout losses that total a cage time of 2:10. Although he faced two tough opponents, Sato’s UFC future is very much in jeopardy.
Rin Nakai: The 16-0-1, Rin Nakai made her UFC debut against the number two ranked Miesha Tate at UFN 52. Nakai had a certainly unique personality and gained a bunch of media attention leading up to her fight against Tate. The 5’1” Nakai seemed to struggle dealing with the range and overall skill level of the former title challenger Miesha Tate. Nakai had next to no success striking and also had a tough time controlling and grappling with the number two-ranked bantamweight. Debuting against a veteran like Miesha Tate is a tough test to ask of any female bantamweight. In a rather lackluster fight, Tate picked up the unanimous decision giving Nakai the first loss of her career.
Amir Sadollah: Amir Sadollah was coming into UFN 52 just nine days short of being on a two year layoff. Sadollah took on Yoshihiro Akiyama in front of his home crowd in Japan. Sadollah never really had the chance to have too much success with his striking. The TUF 7 middleweight winner was taken down in the first round and was controlled for the round. In the second round he got caught with a big punch that seemed to break his nose and was almost finished in the round, but was able to recover. In the third round it was much of the same, Akiyama controlled the round and almost finished Sadollah late, but once again Sadollah proved to be tough to finish as he made it to the end of the fight. Sadollah lost all three rounds on all of the judge’s scorecards and his record dropped to 6-5 all of which took place in the UFC.