Former PRIDE boss Nobuyuki Sakakibara introduced his new promotion during a press conference from Tokyo this morning.
No name was officially announced as Fedor Emelianenko’s opponent on New Years Eve, but they did promise the announcement would be revealed via press release in the future.
The promotion did announce two female competitors, Gabi Garcia and Rena Kubota.
The new promotion will be called Rizin Fighting Federation. It will feature a two-night event in December, with one event on Dec. 29, and the other on Dec. 31. The two-night event will be called the “Rizin Fighting World Grand Prix 2015”. These fights will take place at the former home of PRIDE, the Saitama Super Arena. As we’ve known for a while now, the event will air on Spike TV via Tape Delay.
Also confirmed by Sakakibara was that the event will indeed take place in a ring and feature the former PRIDE rules. The grand prix will co-promote with Bellator MMA, KSW, BAMMA, Jungle Fight and King of Kings.
Bellator president Scott Coker and Spike TV executive Jon Slusser were also at the press conference. They revealed that Bellator MMA fighters will fight at the events, as well as Jimmy Smith and Sean Grande being confirmed as the commentators for the Spike TV broadcast.
They also confirmed that Bellator MMA and Spike are fully committed to supporting the Rizin grand prix. This will include shoulder programming leading up to the events in December.
Check out the new website where Emelianenko, Sakuraba, Aoki, Garcia and Kubota are listed under the roster.