Earlier in the day, Floyd Mayweather called his exhibition boxing bout with Tenshin Nasukawa a “9 minute walk thru.” As it turned out, he needed less than three.
The 41-year-old Mayweather knocked down the 20-year-old Nasukawa three times in the opening round of their contest, which capped off today’s Rizin FF 14 at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
Mayweather showed little respect for his opponent at the start, miming real punches while waiting to see what Nasukawa could offer. With a smile on his face, Mayweather came forward and landed a pair of body shots that sent Nasukawa to the canvas for an early takedown. Nasukawa crawled back to his feet, struggling to mask the pain he obviously felt. Mayweather went quickly back to the attack and landed a huge right hand that dropped his foe once again. Clearly struggling to gather his wits, Nasukawa got to his feet once again, but a Mayweather left hook sent him flailing to the floor again, and the Japanese kickboxer’s corner was forced to throw in the towel.
In the night’s MMA main event, Kyoji Horiguchi (26-2) continued his incredible run in his native Japan, tapping out Bellator bantamweight champ Darrion Caldwell (13-2) to claim the Rizin FF title and notch his 11th consecutive victory.
The pace was quick to start, and Caldwell was able to close the distance and grab hold of Horiguchi, who nearly slipped through the ropes before he was able to briefly reverse position. Caldwell was unfazed, rotating and grabbing a kimura grip that he torqued even as Horiguchi’s arm did poke through the ropes. Caldwell eventually let go of the hold, and when he tried to capitalize on the Japanese ruleset with a knee to a downed opponent, Horiguchi slipped it and scrambled back to the feet.
Once on the feet, Horiguchi brought the crowd to life with a few impressive striking exchanges, darting in and out of his opponent’s eight-inch reach advantage to land and avoid the replies.
Caldwell was quick on the takedown again in the second, punching his way into the effort. Horiguchi was able to get back to his feet in rapid fashion, but Caldwell delivered a few crisp knees and then continued to control the positioning on the floor. A slippery Horiguchi made it tough for Caldwell to do much damage with strikes, though he did punch whenever possible. Instead, most of Caldwell’s focus was forced to remain on keeping hold of the fan favorite, while Horiguchi did his best to punch as often as possible while he tried to climb to his feet.
Horiguchi was energized to start the third, and he darted in and out of range with massive shots, including a big right to the body that landed clean. Caldwell responded by shooting forward, but as Horiguchi fell to his back, he latched in a guillotine choke and went for the squeeze. It didn’t take long for Caldwell to tap, giving Horiguchi the Rizin FF bantamweight title – and earning him a shot at Caldwell’s Bellator belt sometime in 2019.
— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) December 31, 2018
By: MMAjunkie Staff |