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[2018-07-07-KAI Produce] Hikaru Sato vs Takatoshi Matsumoto


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Matsumoto is a former Pancrase fighter. This is billed as a gi jiu-jitsu exhibition, but it's a very pro wrestling match. At one point, Sato takes his purple belt off and starts whipping Matsumoto with it like he's LA Park, which is just wonderful. It's a short match but Sato is really good on this. Matsumoto (a brown belt) outclasses him on the ground and so Sato rolls out of the ring after a pinfall attempt, then he tries to do an Irish whip and fails, and then just starts throwing strikes. Sato gets the win by choking Matsumoto with his belt.

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  • GSR changed the title to [2018-07-07-KAI Produce] Hikaru Sato vs Takatoshi Matsumoto
  • 2 years later...

This is beautiful. I trained BJJ for a while and even then at a high level, BJJ in a gi is boring to watch (no gi is much more entertaining) as it's two high level grapplers cancelling each other out until they find an opening to exploit if one appears. This, however isn't BJJ (despite being marketed as that), it's a pro-wrestling match with two guys with pro MMA and BJJ backgrounds wrestling with gis on. Neither guy was lighting the world on fire MMA, but they been fun to watch as they transition to pro-wrestling. Sato's MMA record is full of worked matches for some reason (the Takayama U-Spirits match is a known work, there's talks the Shannon Ritch match from Pancrase was also a work, etc.) and he also had one of the oddest finishes to an MMA fight ever as he was mounting his opponent and his opponent knocked him out from underneath. Despite having more experience in MMA and pro-wrestling, Sato is a lesser ranked BJJ practitioner than Matsumoto as it's a purple belt vs. brown belt and it's worked as such. Matsumoto dominates the grappling exchanges and Sato shows signs of frustration and he takes his belt off and whips Matsumoto with it. There's a cool bit where Matsumoto gets heated and takes his belt off in exchange and chokes Sato with it. One of the neat things about Matsumoto, is he uses shoot BJJ holds to pull off beautiful looking innovative cradle pins. The finish is fantastic with Sato using his belt to pull off a nasty belt assisted looking arm trapped choke. These pro-wrestling matches with BJJ practitioners is still a somewhat new genre, but it's been fun to watch and one I definitely welcome more of specially when they mix it with other BJJ practitioners, judokas or CACC wrestlers.

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