Kyoji Horiguchi faces Sergio Pettis for the Bellator bantamweight title at Bellator 272. If the Japanese sensation wins, it will be the second time he’s held the 135-pound Bellator strap.
“The Typhoon” can be considered the biggest bantamweight on the planet competing outside of the UFC. At 31, he has already produced an incredible MMA career, beating outstanding opponents across the globe.
Kyoji Horiguchi entered the UFC in 2013 with an 11-1 record. Horiguchi would rack up seven wins in the promotion, his only loss being that of flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson.
The Japanese fighter would leave the UFC on a three-game winning streak and continue his career in Japan with Rizin. Since then, Horiguchi has added more incredible victories to his resume.
This list takes a look at the five biggest victories in Origuchi’s career so far.
# 5. Former UFC flyweight contender Ali Bagautinov
Ali Bagautinov competed in the UFC from 2013 to 2016. With victories over notable challengers such as John Lineker and Tim Elliot, Bagautinov won a title against Demetrious Johnson for the UFC flyweight title in his fourth UFC fight.
Bagautinov would lose the contest by unanimous decision and face Kyoji Horiguchi in 2016. The fight was the two fighters’ last fight with the UFC.
Horiguchi showcased his growth as an MMA fighter in this fight. A year earlier, he had been dominated by Demetrious Johnson. “Mighty Mouse” was able to exploit Kyoji Horiguchi’s shortcomings in wrestling and wrestling, keeping the karate black belt on the ground for most of the fight and attaching an armband at the last second of the fight.
In his fight with Bagautinov, however, “The Typhoon” overcame Sambo’s champion wrestling expertise and managed to take the Russian back, nearly securing a naked starter from the back. Although he was shot several times, Horiguchi fought back and secured his own withdrawal against the Russian.
The Japanese fighter used quick footwork, improved grappling hook, and precise hitting to win the fight by unanimous decision.