This weekend will be perhaps the biggest super fight in kickboxing in many years, maybe in forever. Two of the greatest and most exciting kickboxers in history, Tenshin Nasukawa and Takeru will be finally going head to head. For years this is the kickboxing match fans dreamed of. But promotional politics seemingly always stood in the way. Somehow someway K-1, Rise, and Rizin were able to meet and work out not only an amazing main event but a card that looks incredible on paper. With Nasukawa representing Rise and Takeru representing K-1 most of the fights have been booked as K-1 vs Rise matches. Let’s look at some of the matches of this card
Tenshin Nasukawa vs Takeru
The main event. The match of 2022. Tickets sold as expensive as $25,000 just for a front-row seat. There was a lottery and many were shut out. It finally happens tonight. Nasukawa has been a young sensation in kickboxing. His viral knockouts of some opponents have gotten millions of views on social media. He became a star in Rizin after his Floyd Mayweather boxing exhibition. His recent fights though have seen a more tentative Tenshin. He is going into boxing after this fight. Will we see the old Tenshin with a highlight reel knockout?
Takeru has been a star in K-1 for many years. His relatable personality, his passion for the sport, and his knockouts have made him a favorite in the kickboxing world. Takeru’s goal has been to make kickboxing a viable, mainstream sport. He almost got one of his goals with K-1 being on terrestrial TV when this card was going to be on Fuji TV, but then removed after allegations with Rizin CEO Nobuyuki Sakakibara and yakuza allegedly surfaced. With this win, it would be the culmination of an incredible career. He has beaten the best in K-1 but can he overcome Tenshin to fully cement his legacy as one of the best ever?
Kaito vs Masaki Noiri
In another cross-promotional match, we have Shootboxing vs K-1. Shootboxing is kickboxing with standing submissions allowed. This match will be under kickboxing rules.
Kaito has made a name as being one of the top fighters in Shootboxing. He has also had a successful kickboxing career in Rise and Rizin. He is also on an 11-fight winning streak. He is tall for his decision and commonly targets the body when on offense.
Masaki Noiri is a K-1 fan favorite and somewhat of an enigma in the kickboxing world. He is a private person and only created a Twitter account last September. He follows no one but has over 21,000 followers. Beyond that, he is an incredible kickboxer who is also known for targeting and finishing people with strikes to the body.
Ya-Man vs Ryusei Ashizawa
This will be the most heated battle of the card.
Ya-Man is on his way to being a star for Rise. He got the biggest win of his career when faced off against Kouzi in Rizin for their New Year’s Eve show Rizin 30. He always mentions his troubled background and that it inspired him to get into kickboxing and to make a better life for himself.
Ryusei Ashizawa has been with K-1 since 2016 and floundering around the mid-card for a while. This will be the biggest fight he’s had so far and undoubtedly the biggest win.
Both of these fighters notably got into a scuffle at a press conference to announce the fights and the weigh-ins. Ashizawa criticized Ya-Man as not being a “street fighter” saying that he had a college background. Ya-Man took offense to that and they went at each other. A security guard stormed right in picking up Ya-Man and Ya-Man hit his head on the table.
The Match 2022 Results:
Follow along with MMASucka as we provide you with The Match 2022 results throughout the card.
MAIN CARD (Abema TV 11:30 P.M. EST/8:30 P.M. PST)
Tenshin Nasukawa def Takeru via unanimous decision
Kaito def Masaki Noiri via unanimous decision in the extension round
Kento Haraguchi def Hideaki Yamazaki via TKO (ref stoppage) in 0:33 of Round 2
Rukiya Anpo def Kosei Yamada via unanimous decision
Kongnapa Weerasakreck def Taiju Shiratori via TKO (punch) in 2:47 of Round 1
Kan Nakamura def Leona Pettas via majority decision
Ya-Man def Ryusei Ashizawa via knockout (punch) in 1:49 of Round 1
Hiromi Wajima def “Black Panther” Bey Noah via unanimous decision
Sina Karimian def Rikiya Yamashita via unanimous decision
Mahmoud Sattari def Yuta Uchia via knockout (punch) in 1:18 of Round 1
Yuki Kasahara def Chihiro Nakajima via unanimous decision
Kazane def Toma Kuroda via unanimous decision in extension round
Mutsuki Ebata def Riamu via split decision in extension round
Masashi Kimura def. Shiro via unanimous decision (30-28, 30-29, 30-29)
Masahiko Suzuki def Akihiro Kaneko via majority decision (30-29, 29-29, 30-29)
Rui Okubo def. Ryujin Nasukawa via unanimous decision (30-28, 30-29, 30-29)
NOTE: Abema TV is available to watch on an app or on your computer. However, it is region locked. You will need a VPN or live in Japan to watch the show.