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An all-out turf war for PRIDE in Japan

By Zach Arnold | June 22, 2007

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More about this story at Gryphon’s site.

On Wednesday, Nikkan Sports published a report that on August 18th, the first ’shinsei’ PRIDE event would happen at Saitama Super Arena. Obviously, it sounded like the kind of rumor that would be started by someone who used to be affiliated with DSE or is trying to get involved on the ground in Japan to try to revive the PRIDE name there. That’s just how business works in Japan.

Japanese writer Motoichiro Takasu contacted a representative of PFWW discussing Hiroyuki Kato, who was an important director of PRIDE events in Japan under DSE Inc. leadership.

Kato flat out denied that there are any plans for a PRIDE Worldwide FC event in Japan right at this moment. However, it was hinted that something might happen at Saitama Super Arena for August 18th and that ‘PRIDE’ fighters will participate in whatever takes place.

Will there even be a show? Saitama Super Arena is listed as having an open date during that time period.

Takasu speculates that the old management of PRIDE is going to break into two parts.

What does this mean in the grand scheme of things for the Japanese MMA landscape? An all-out turf war. Most of the fighters who worked in PRIDE know that their options with UFC are slim and none — and slim just walked out of the barn. Because of Zuffa’s current situation, patience is running out fast in Japan and results are quickly wanted.

We may see one form of PRIDE or another in Japan, but it’s not what you might expect it to be. This may be a turf battle that UFC has zero control over. It probably would serve them well to ignore the Japanese marketplace and not get involved in this mess. Why? Because you never know who is your friend and who is your enemy in that scene…

Topics: Japan, MMA, Media, PRIDE, UFC, Zach Arnold | 10 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

10 Responses to “An all-out turf war for PRIDE in Japan”

  1. Now this is getting interesting

  2. [...] talk of Pride being dissolved or Pride making another debut on August 18th in Japan it looks like has finally got some dirt on the situation.  Apparantly Zach Arnold was able to dig up that some [...]

  3. Grape Knee High says:

    If all the Japanese PRIDE fighters are truly free agents right now, why is FEG not making any sort of attempt to sign those guys and move HERO’s more into PRIDE turf? Especially if the rumors were true that FEG was trying to buy DSE. It’s all a bit puzzling.

  4. [...] may have spoken too soon. – Your Global Connection to the Fight Industry. On Wednesday, Nikkan Sports published a report that on August 18th, the first [...]

  5. Nipponjin says:

    Hey hey hey,,, all Japanese MMA fans know Takasu is a kind of braggart. He just wants to earn lots of page views on his blog by denying what PRIDE fans hope to be.
    His father was a famous producer in Japanese entertainment field and Motoichiro is just his son. That’s all.
    Please don’t be serious.

    In addition, this entry has wrong translations. Takasu is not saying that he contacted Mr. Kato, but just talked with a staff of Public Relations Department of PFCWW on the phone.
    He quoted Kato’s name like “I heard a rumor that Mr. Kato reserved Saitama Super Arena on August 18th”…

  6. [...] Shifty shit going down in Japan regarding Pride Apparently people in Japan know even less about what’s happening with PRIDE. From his coconut tree high above our heads, Zach Arnold breaks down the confusion into throwable chunks of poop and tosses it our way. [...]

  7. Andrej says:

    Wasn’t Shinya Aoki vs Takanomi Gomi supposed to headline the new pride card from what i here. As well as have Hideki Yoshida and a big japanese feal?

  8. doem says:

    not really surprised
    go from no DSE news to a full fledged production in 2 months?

    it sounded too good to be true

  9. Kev says:

    Word is out that Dave Meltzer is confirming that there is no substance behind the August 18 date.

  10. Jonathan says:

    I am still holding out hope…

    *clutches Pride banner to his chest!”


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