DREAM.16 took place earlier this morning at Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan. Fights from the card can be found in the playlist above for those of us unable to get HDNet. Quick recap and results after the jump.
It took longer than expected, but Gegard Mousasi finished off Tatsuya Mizuno deep in the first round to become DREAM’s first light heavyweight champion. Following a few short exchanges in the opening minute, Mousasi took Mizuno down and worked from the top the majority of the fight. Mousasi searched for openings to strike, but Mizuno remained very active on the bottom constantly pushing Mousasi off balance. The finish actually came shortly after Mizuno worked back to his feet and secured a takedown of his own. Mousasi quickly swept him, transitioned to his back and sunk in the rear-naked choke for the win and the title.
Jason “Mayhem” Miller became only the second person to submit living legend Kazushi Sakuraba. After a failed takedown attempt, Sakuraba flopped to his back. Mayhem immediately put himself into position to rain down strikes from his feet, but realizing he was in sudden danger, the crafty veteran wrapped his legs around Mayhem’s and went for a leg lock. Mayhem fought it off rather easily though and ended up in top position. Shortly thereafter, he slipped on an arm-triangle and forced his idol to tap two minutes into the first round.
It wasn’t his most exciting fight, but Shinya Aoki picked up another decisive victory. He controlled Marcus Aurelio on the ground for the majority of the fight and even bloodied Aurelio’s face with a little ground and pound to win a lopsided decision. Japanese prospect Satoshi Ishii picked up the second win of his career by outworking and outlasting Ikuhisa Minowa to earn a unanimous decision. Joachim Hansen snapped a three-fight losing streak against Hideo Tokoro. After a early low blow halted the action for several minutes, Hansen managed to lock in a slick triangle from the mount position. Tokoro fought it off for a good minute or so, but Hansen eventually locked it in too deep, forcing Tokoro to tap.
James Thompson didn’t have as much luck as his losing streak was extended to three fights. He fought a close fight against DEEP Megaton champ Yusuke Kawaguchi, but came up short when the judges’ decision was announced. In his post-fight interview, Thompson claimed the Japanese judges “screwed” and “raped” him out of the win.
- Gegard Mousasi defeats Tatsuya Mizuno via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) in Round One
- Jason “Mayhem” Miller defeats Kazushi Sakuraba via Submission (Arm-Triangle Choke) in Round One
- Shinya Aoki defeats Marcus Aurelio via Unanimous Decision
- Satoshi Ishii defeats Ikuhisa Minowa via Unanimous Decision
- Hiroyuki Takaya defeats Chase Beebe via Knockout in Round One
- Michihiro Omigawa defeats Cole Escovedo via Submission (Reverse Armbar) in Round One
- Joachim Hansen defeats Hideo Tokoro via Submission (Triangle Choke) in Round One
- Kazuyuki Miyata defeats Takeshi Inoue via Unanimous Decision
- Mitsuhiro Ishida defeats Akiyo Nishiura via Split Decision
- Yusuke Kawaguchi defeats James Thompson via Split Decision
DREAM.16 post-fight interviews at DREAM’s YouTube channel.