After a successful 2018, RIZIN will kick off the first of six (possibly eight) events this year on 21 April, when it makes its way to Yokohama for RIZIN 15.
The promotion has confirmed four fights, including the first-ever light heavyweight championship bout that sees Muhammed Lawal and Jiri Prochazka run back their first clash at RIZIN World Grand Prix 2015, where Prochazka lost to King Mo in the first round. That loss has been Prochazka’s only defeat in has last 13 fights.
The fight will tale place at 60kg and Horiguchi’s title will not be on the line.
“I’m happy to be back,” Horiguchi said.
“My opponent is a tough striker who has a legitimate ground game. This will be a fun but my goal is to win in exciting fashion. I am obligated to continue to grow the sport here in Japan and I need to put on exciting fights.”
Nguyen said he had grown up watching PRIDE and it was a dream to fight in Japan.
“Horiguchi is a remarkable fighter on a hot streak right now but I know I can beat him. We are both predominately strikers so this fight will be explosive. I can’t wait to fight him.”
A match-up between former UFC flyweight Ulka Sasaki and Kai Asakura will take place in the bantamweight division, while Kai’s brother Mikuru Asakura will face Luiz Gustavo.
The RIZIN 15 card includes:
Kyoji Horiguchi vs Ben Nguyen (132lbs)
Jiri Prochazka vs King Mo (205lbs) (C)
Kai Asakura vs Ulka Sasaki (135lbs)
Mikuru Asakura vs Luis Gustavo (149lbs)
Koji Takeda vs TBA (155lbs)