1st Match


Special One Match
Tsuyoshi Kohsaka def. James Thompson
via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 1:58


As both fighters made their entrances, Thompson’s all action entrance was reminiscent of the Pride era whereas Kohsaka’s facial expression was very quiet, gazing at his opponent.
As soon as the bell rings, Thompson comes flying in at Kohsaka with a wild left hook before the two lock up. Thompson throws a couple of left knees to the body of Kohsaka but Kohsaka responds with a flurry of punches. Thompson then lands some solid punches to the body, and continues to do so with his left hand holding Kohsaka in a one arm clinch. Kohsaka is backed into the red corner but Thompson, still with the one armed clinch firmly holding on, keeps coming at him with punches and knees to Kohsaka’s body, but to not much effect. Kohsaka covers up but it’s a barrage of right hooks by the big Brit. Kohsaka finally manages to push him out of the corner and throws some strikes but Thompson takes him back to the corner momentarily. Kohsaka lands a left hook that stuns Thompson and now they back in the corner, although this time reversed. The fighters clinch, slowing the fight down. Kohsaka lands a big right knee that looks to have hurt Thompson as the crowd roars. Thompson retreats to the corner, where most of this fight has been so far, and looks tired. Kohsaka throws lefts and rights, and every time he tries to escape the corner, Kohsaka drives him back. Kohsaka lands another punch to the solar plexus of Thompson.
Some big overhand right hooks from Kohsaka, with Thompson covering up. Kohsaka has landed some good shots and it seems to have affected Thompson as both fighters finally escape the corner and get to the middle. A few wild strikes later and they are back in the corner. The fighters clinch in the corner, the action slow. Thompson tries to take Kohsaka down with a hip throw but is unsuccessful and the fighters finally escape the corner. Kohsaka lands a couple of decent right hooks in the exchange that follows before both fighters make their way back to the middle of the ring. They exchange punches until Kohsaka is able to throw Thompson to the ground. He mounts Thompson and starts laying in punches, Thompson covering up.
Thompson tries to stand up and escape but Kohsaka has him and is looking for a submission while landing punches. Kohsaka is in control and goes for an arm submission but Thompson tries to escape again, this time able to roll over and get onto all fours. All Thompson can do is cover up as the onslaught of punches to his face continues. The barrage continues and as Thompson tries to stand up, Kohsaka hits him with a left knee to the head and keeps on the attack, hammering away. Kosaka comes in with knees again, Thompson tries to stand up but to no avail. It’s one way traffic here. Thompson keeps going for Kohsaka’s left leg and finally is able to grab it and stand up.
Kohsaka lands a solid middle kick to the abdomen as Thompson throws a punch at the same time. This causes Kohsaka to slip and he falls to the canvas. This time it’s Thompson on top in the mount, throwing punches to the face and body but Kohsaka is too good, escaping the mount and trapping Thompson’s right leg sending Thompson back on all fours. With Thompson now face down again on all fours, Kohsaka continues the fury of punches and knees to Thompson’s face. All Thompson can do is cover up and try to escape by trying to grab Kohsaka’s leg. Every time Thompson tries to stand, his back is well controlled by Kohsaka, who is landing some solid strikes (punches, elbows, knees) to the head of Thompson.
Thompson rolls onto his back and Kohsaka keeps up the pressure, not giving him an inch. Despite some right hand attempts from Thompson to Kohsaka’s head, Kohsaka is still largely in control.
Kohsaka again goes for a submission on Thompson’s right arm and Thompson seems like he can momentarily stand up but Kohsaka again controls him, looking for that submission. The fighters are back in the corner, with Thompson now on all fours face down. Thompson uses the corner and the ropes (putting his head through them) to stand up. They clinch and exchange strikes, spending the last 30 seconds of the round back and forwards in the clinch trading slow shots.
The bell rings for round two and Kohsaka throws a left straight, Thompson responds with some wild hooks from both hands that are off target. Kohsaka again with a left straight, Thompson again with wild hooks but he is visibly tired and is not moving much. The referee temporarily stops the fight to check Thompson’s mouth piece, but quickly resumes. Through Thompson’s wild swings, Kohsaka is able to land two decent right straights. Thompson has slowed right down and is barely moving. Kohsaka lands a solid right hook that stuns the Brit, and they clinch up. Thompson goes for a take down by the ropes but Kohsaka evades him and Thompson falls down. Now on all fours again, Thompson is taking more flurries of punches from Kohsaka.
Thompson is able to get to his feet and stand up but Kohsaka lands a solid right hook that stuns Thompson before unloading with an onslaught of punches that land, with Thompson unable to defend them causing the referee to stop the fight.
Kohsaka on the mic:
“I am back. And to Mr. Sakakibara, Nobuhiko Takada, welcome back. And to the millions of fans watching, welcome back too. Thank you. I would like to thank everyone who helped me get back in the ring. I can’t name everyone as that would take more than a day but to everyone, thank you.”