Tenshin’s not human, Bob Sapp finally gets a win, and Mirko Cro-Cop continues to defy father time — just some of the highlights from RIZIN 13 over the weekend!
RIZIN 13 was one of several big MMA events going down this past weekend, and if there was one takeaway, it was this: Tenshin Nasukawa is probably not human. Pulling off more Matrix-style moves in his main event kickboxing fight against former UFC title challenger Kyoji Horiguchi, Tenshin, the teenage phenom, dazzled his way to a unanimous decision win.
Nasukawa, who turned all of twenty just last month, is the wave of the future in Japanese MMA. Kyojji Horiguchi, who held his own in the battle, remains the present. And to give fans a balanced card, RIZIN dipped back into its history (or at least that of Pride), somehow managing to resurrect the MMA career of Bob Sapp. Sapp, who once fought Big Nog and Jerome Le Banner in Pride and K-1, respectively, started his career at 10-3-1. Then came the losses. A 14-fight losing streak, with Sapp showing up, getting hit, going down and covering up, again and again. Sapp had not won an MMA fight since 2010, but he managed to survive an early onslaught by Sumo wrestler Osunaarashi, in his MMA debut. Sapp then battled back, though by the end of a very sloppy fight, both men were winded. In any case, Sapp won a unanimous decision, building on a kickboxing win against Akebono at RIZIN 2.
In a much more entertaining fight, meanwhile, Mirko Cro-Cop continued to defy father time, stopping Roque Martinez with an elbow that opened up a nasty cut on the younger fighter. While Cro-Cop has been talking retirement of late, he has not lost since 2014, and has beaten the likes of Bellator’s King Mo (in a RIZIN crossover), Gabriel Gonzaga (in the UFC), and Olympian Satoshi Ishii (twice).
Check below for a full gallery of highlights from RIZIN 13, courtesy of RIZIN Fighting Federation!