With the Japanese Heavyweight scene being very slim one in terms of talent we've seen the fighters struggling for competitive bouts and good, developmental sparring. The lack of depth in the division was certainly part of the reason for Nobuhiro Ishida's decision to move to Heavyweight though it has also served as the reason for a interesting sparring session this past Thursday.
The sparring we're talking about saw Japanese Heavyweight champion Kyotaro Fujimoto (8-1, 5) sharing a ring for 5 rounds of 3 minutes with Olympic Judoka Satoshi Ishii.
Ishii, who won an Olympic gold medal in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, has turned his attention to MMA in recent years and has run up an impressive 11-2-1 record in professional MMA. This made him a perfect partner for Fujimoto who required a top level combat athlete just to push him.
Whilst there is no hint that Ishii will be turning his hands to boxing in the near future we wouldn't complain if this sparring session has lead to him considering the move somewhere down the line. Any addition to the division right now would be an improvement.
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