MMA World Reacts To Passing Of Kid Yamamoto

kid yamamoto

The MMA world has reacted to the passing of Kid Yamamoto as several fighters have taken to social media to comment on the news. Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto passed away on Tuesday, September 18, at age 41 just a month after announcing that he was diagnosed with cancer, and was being treated overseas at the time.

The Japanese MMA legend had a great impact on the sport as he fought above his weight class for the majority of his career, and was the first true superstar from the lighter weights. He fought some of the best MMA fighters in the world while competing as a pro fighter and picked up some big accolades along the way. That includes winning Hero’s 2005 lightweight Grand Prix by beating the likes of Genki Sudo, Caol Uno, and Royler Gracie, all by knockout.

Kid also fought in a cross-over match up with kickboxing great Masato. This fight saw him score a knockdown but eventually suffered a decision loss. This was a big success in Japan as it drew 52,000 fans in the arena and 34 million viewers on TV.

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Moving along to 2007, Yamamoto was able to score a win over current ranked UFC fighter Rani Yahya in front of almost 48,000 fans by knockout. At the time, he held a pro-MMA record of 17-1 that included some wins over big names. Those fighters include Asian champions Bibiano Fernandes and Jadamba Narantungalag, Jeff Curran, and Istvan Majoros and Kazuyuki Miyata

Yamamoto was one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the sport before making the decision to initial retire in 2007. Yamamoto took part in four fights under the UFC banner once signing with the promotion in 2011 but his stint was not as successful as originally believed.

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After taking time off to attempt to qualify for the 2008 Olympics, his pro-MMA career started to decline as he suffered numerous injuries on the next couple of years. This was unfortunate as he fought in the UFC around this time including making his promotional debut by fighting former UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson in 2011. He wrapped up his career with a record of 18-6-2 NC.

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