The one and only, Sexyama, returns to the octagon this November 28, 2015 at the Olympic Gymnastics Arena in Seoul, South Korea.
The Match Up
Welterweight Yoshihiro Akiyama 14-5-2 NC vs. Alberto Mina 11-0
Welterweight Yoshihiro Akiyama -150 vs. Alberto Mina +130
3 Things You Should Know
1. At 40 years old, Akiyama may ONLY have his sex appeal left.
The last time Akiyama was in action, he beat Amir Sadollah; a name that probably doesn’t even ring a bell at this point (no offense Amir).
At this point in his career, Akiyama’s presence is clear; provide eye candy to the men with ring card girls, and balance the sex scales with Akiyama’s half naked presence. Like many judokas, Akiyama has aged well, but not so well that he can remain in the UFC with any degree of consistency. To keep him in the UFC, Zuffa will have to give him matchups like this. Mina is no pushover. But if you saw his last fight, you can be forgiven for your trepidation.
2. Beware, the universal Solider of God.
To be fair, Mina doesn’t typically fight the way he did in his last bout, against Shinsho Anzai. Whatever that bout was, it barely resembled MMA. I’d argue it looked more like Russian grade schoolers brawling on hockey ice.
Mina has won the majority of his fights with slick ground skills and capable power on the feet. Despite his undefeated record, he’s neither a prospect, nor a project. He’s a veteran for all intents and purposes, who just happened to get his big break late. In that sense, it’s a good fight for Akiyama.
3. Zuffa says ‘you’re welcome, South Korea’.
Then again I’d make the nominal argument that Mina’s fight against Anzai reveals his inexperience. Sometimes an atypical performance is a reflection of bad tendencies coaxed out. I think this was modestly the case with Mina.
You can tell his limited time with King’s MMA has benefited him in some fundamental ways, but his fundamental habits haven’t changed; he’s a slick ground fighter that still struggles to get the fight where he’s most comfortable with. His strikes are strong, and stiff, but they reek of predictability. When Anzai cracked him, Mina cracked back with the only rhythm he seems capable of.
Years ago this would easily been in Akiyama’s favor. Even now, I think it still is. Akiyama is tough to take down, especially for a guy like Mina (who himself got Judo tossed by Anzai), is incredibly tough, and has enough power to land on Mina’s porous defense. The only reason I’m not 100% sold on an Akiyama win is because of his chin. Mina is a flawed fighter, but he’s strong in the important areas.
I see Akiyama landing that big right hand. Mina’s almost always open to get slammed with it, and Akiyama won’t be afraid to throw it when he gets threatened with Mina’s takedowns. Again, not a gimme, but I do think Akiyama should own those first two rounds comfortably if it goes that far. Yoshihiro Akiyama by TKO, round 2.
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