Satoshi Ishii is fighting for the future of JMMA against Fedor Emelianenko


If you’ve been following MMA for any amount of time you’ve surely heard the talk that Japanese MMA is on the decline. The fighters that have ventured outside of the Japanese circuit have not met with great success as of late.  Fighters such as Yoshihiro Akiyama, Michihiro Omigawa, Shinya Aoki, Kid Yamamoto and Takanori Gomi have all struggled outside of the confines of Japanese MMA. One young fighter has a chance to right that ship, Satoshi Ishii.

Ishii, a 25 year old Olympic Gold Medalist in Judo, will have the chance to make a name for himself on New Year’s Eve when he faces the legendary Fedor Emelianenko on a Dream card. So, what makes Ishii so special, why is he the potential savior for Japanese MMA?

For one, his Olympic Judo background is a strong base for him to build upon. Ishii has a silver medal in the 2006 Asian Games, a gold medal in the 2007 Universiade, and a gold medal in the 2008 Olympics.  The other advantage that Ishii has is that he has done almost all of MMA training with some of the best team’s that America has to offer. Those teams include American Top Team, Xtreme Couture and his current gym Mark Munoz’s Reign Training Center. Training with fighters such as Wanderlei Silva, Shogun Rua, Fabricio Werdum and Alistair Overeem is something that can only help the young up and coming fighter as continues his MMA career.

Ishii is 4-1-1 in his MMA career with his last fight taking place on September 14 against Paulo Filho.  That bout was deemed a draw.  The only loss of Ishii’s career came in his first professional MMA bout, which took place on New Year’s Eve 2009.

Ishii’s recently said, “My main goal is to make it into the Ultimate Fighting Championships and ultimately become a champion.” – for a complete interview with LowKick. Com click here

A victory over Fedor still carries weight in the MMA world, and if Ishii proves victorious on New Year’s Eve it may not be long before he finds himself in the UFC pursuing his ultimate goal and perhaps becoming the new face of Japanese MMA.

What do you think LowKick’ers, who will win on New Year’s Eve Ishii or Fedor?

  • And Fedor is fighting for the future of RMMA.

  • JMMA is not going to go away. JMMA has to find a way to bring in more North American fighters into the East. UFC at the moment has the majority of the best fighters in the world, and a lot of fighters strive to get into UFC. If Japanese fighters want to “save” (which i think is a bad word, i prefer “popularity”) JMMA they have to promote more in the States and everywhere else in the world, also bigger pay checks etc. Using UFC as a blue print they can become just as popular as they once were, i’m talking about Pride of course. Japan also has to find a way to keep their fighters in Japan and not to jump ship, which is hard to do if the opportunity knocks for a fighter.

  • or just hold more cards in japan with japanese fighters under the ufc, like the brazil cards, we dont want 2 seperate competitions anymore like strikeforce and the ufc was before

  • MMA was in Japan befor UFC1 they invented MMA.

  • Ishii is 4-1-1. That means he’s beatable. I mean, if Hidehiko Yoshida was able to beat him (by decision), I don’t why Emelianenko couldn’t. If Emelianenko wins, well good for him, but if he loses, it means he ain’t that good no more.

  • JMMA is not Shatoshi Ishii in my opinion. He may be part of it at one point but JMMA now is Okami,Akiyama and a Ioki. Ishii needs some more wins if he wants to be called “the hope of JMMA”

  • i love japan and you are a top HW fighter but i think fedor will KOed you.

  • fedor will prove that he is still one of the best by beating you