Goiti Yamauchi earned his 20th submission to open up the main card of Bellator 237 against RIZIN star Daron Cruickshank.
It was a crossover match to kick off the Bellator 237 main card as RIZIN star Daron Cruickshank battled Bellator mainstay Goiti Yamauchi.
Yamauchi has been with the promotion since 2013 but has never fought for the title. While that may be the case, he has a very respectable Bellator record of 10-3. Of those 10 wins, six are by submission, including his last win. That came in October at Bellator 239 and lasted just 100 seconds as Yamauchi submitted Saad Awad.
Daron Cruickshank lasted in the UFC from 2012 to 2016 but went 5-6 with one no contest. Of the five wins, three were by head kick KO. The talented kickboxer moved to RIZIN in 2016, where he has gone 5-4 with all of his wins coming via KO. He comes into Bellator 237 on a two-fight losing streak.
Goiti Yamauchi was the first to throw a strike, firing a head kick at Daron Cruickshank that the latter dodged. A low kick followed by a left straight connected for Cruickshank, then he blitzed in with strikes to back Yamauchi up. Yamauchi threw a head kick then a leg kick, avoiding a right hand on the way back. Cruickshank threw a spinning elbow, but Yamauchi ducked and clinched Cruickshank as his back was turned, driving him to the cage. Yamauchi hopped on his opponent’s back, kicked off the cage and brought the fight to the ground. Yamauchi sunk in the choke, and Cruickshank went unconscious as he tried to tap out.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) December 29, 2019
Goiti Yamauchi def. Daron Cruickshank by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) in Round 1 (3:11)