DEEP 57 - 02/18/2012: Hirota Defends Lightweight Title Ready for "Graduation" - Full Results

Written by: Shu Hirata

(Amanda Lucas, a daughter of the creator of Star Wars GeorgeLucas, won women's open-weight title on the same night. Lucas Film certifiedDarth Vadar and Storm Troopers joined the celebration after the fight)

Mizuto Hirota successfully defended his DEEP lightweight title against SeichiIkemoto and this actually means he is one step closer to crossing the PacificOcean.

Hirota now has only one fight left in the contract and his next fight does nothave to be a title fight.

Well, so what does it mean?

In the world of Japanese MMA things are bit different from what we do here inNorth America.

When the promotion wants to use you then that means the promoter is giving youan "opportunity" therefore if you keep winning then you are going tobe "obligated" to be in the line for a title shot. And this actuallymeans, you maybe getting a title shot, a big opportunity, so if you win, thenyou just can't walk out. In the States we put "championship clause"in the contract to avoid that but in Japan where most deals are done in handshakes,these understanding of "fundamental rules" and "intention ofpromoter" are very very important.

Basically a fighter must avoid anything that might be resulted in hurtingpromotion's reputation. The promoter just can't be shamed. Face is an importantissue in Japan.

However, its inevitable that every fighter wants to step up to bigger andbetter opportunities and in the world of MMA, for now, that means going to theUFC. Then what these medium size promotions in Japan has to do? So thepromoters won't be losing their faces?

The solution is, a graduation.

You became our champion then defend once, twice or maybe three times then wecan tell the fans you are sort of "graduating" from us and steppingup to the big league.

ADCC News confirmed with multiple sources that Hirota's obligation for the DEEPlightweight title is done as of this fight.

Now he only have one fight left in the contract and that is an option forHirota. Which means, if he wants to fight one more time then he could chose todo so. But this will be a non-title fight. Nothing on the line.

And this also could mean, in the Japanese MMA, he could do one tune-up fightagainst a lesser opponent to get ready for UFC or Bellator or wherever hedecides to go.

DEEP 57 - 12th Year's Reality
Saturday, February 18th, 2012
At TDC Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Doors Open - 15:00
Fight Starts - 16:00

Confirmed Cards (Subject to Change):

The Main Event - DEEP Lightweight Title Bout 5 min / 3R
Mizuto Hirota (Japan / CAVE) vs Seichi Ikemoto (Japan / MMAStudio STYLE)
Wiinner: 3R Mizuto Hirota by Decision (5-0)

13th Match - DEEP Lightweight Title Bout 5 min / 3R
Levan "Dosukoi" Razmadze (Georgia / Freelance) vs RyutaNoji (Japan / TEAM GARO)
Winner: 1R 3'16" Levan"Dosukoi" Razmadze by Submission (armbar)

12th Match - DEEP Featherweight Title Qualifier Bout 5 min / 3R
Kazunori Yokota (Japan / Freelance) vs Doo Hoo Choi (Korea /CMA KOREA)
Winner: 3R Kazunori Yokota byDecison (5-0)

11th Match - DEEP Bantamweight Title Bout 5 min / 3R
Takafumi Otsuka (Japan / AACC) vs Yoshiro Maeda (Japan /Pancrase Inagaki-gumi)
Winner: 2R 3'13" Yoshiro Maedaby Submission (rear naked choke)

10th Match - DEEP Women's Open-weight Title Bout 5 min / 3R
Amanda Lucas (USA / The Skrap Pack) vs Yumiko Hotta (Japan /REINA Women's Pro-wrestling)
Winner: 3R 2'16" Amand Lucas bySubmission (americana)

9th Match - DEEP Lightweight Bout 5 min / 3R
Akihiro Gono (Japan / Freelance) vs Daisuke Nakamura (Japan/ U-FILE Camp)
Winner: Daisuke Nakamura by Decision(3-0)

8th Match - DEEP Featherweight Bout 5 min / 3R
SHOJI (Japan / KIBA Martial Arts Club) vs Tatsunao Nagakura (Japan/ Yoshida Dojo)
Winner: 3R SHOJI by Decision (3-0)

7th Match - DEEP Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
DJ taiki (Japan / Freelance) vs Yusaku Nakamura (Japan / MMAStudio STYLE)
Winner: 2R 3'57" DJ taiki byTKO (referee stoppage)

6th Match - DEEP Bantamweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Katsuya Toida (Japan / Wajiutsu Toikatsu Dojo) vs Makoto Kamaya (Japan/ TEAM TOURI)
Winner: 1R 1'13" Makoto Kamayaby TKO (punches)

5th Match - DEEP Mega-ton weight Bout 5 min / 2R
SEIGO (Japan / TEAM Tokyo CLUTCH) vs Hirohide Fujinuma (Japan/ SK Absolute)
Winner: 1R 1'20" HirohideFujinuma by KO

4th Match - DEEP Welterweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Yoshitomo Watanabe (Japan / AACC) vs Naoki Samukawa (Japan / Bengling BaySpirit)
Winner: 2R Yoshitomo Watanabe byDecision (2-0)

3rd Match - DEEP Under 87 kg Bout 5 min / 2R
Hiromitsu Kanehara (Japan / U.K.R. Kanehara Dojo) vs Daijiro Matsui (Japan/ Freelance)
Winner: 2R DRAW (1-0)

2nd Match - DEEP Flyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Masato Kobayashi (Japan / Tsudanuma Dojo) vs. Tatsuyuki Nakamura (Japan/ IMPACT)
Winner: 1R 0'09" MasatoKobayashi by KO (punches)

1st Match - DEEP Light-heavyweight Bout 5 min / 2R
Bernard Ackah (République de Côte d'Ivoire / Freelance) vs YUKI(Japan / TEAM TACKLER)
Winner: 1R 3'35" YUKI bySubmission (rear naked choke)

Reportand photo by Shu Hirata
Photo courtesy of DEEP blog: The Wild Side of the DEEP

This was the biggest show of the year for DEEP. Tokyo Dome City Hall is atheatre by Tokyo Dome and it holds little less than 3,000 but on TV it lookslike 8,000.