Pancrase will celebrate its commendable 300th event at the Studio City in Tokyo on 21 October 2018.
So far, six preliminaries bouts have been set, and five on the main card, including today’s announcement of fourth-ranked Kyle Aguon versus fifth-ranked Hanzo Tanaka.
As a note for milestones, in 2013 Pancrase made a resurgence and began using numbers for all events, starting where they’d left off at #244. The NeoBlood Tournament for rookies was brought back after a five-year absence. New rules to fit the North American method were implemented. 2013 also heralded in Pancrase’ first use of a cage and the 20th anniversary mega event.
Aguon has fought in and been ranked at featherweight and bantamweight during the 10 years of his career. He was the top contender at featherweight but dropped to bantam for a shot at the PXC belt, which he won and defended in back to back match ups against Rolando Dy.
Aguon has already fought in Pancrase thrice. He beat Mach product Suguru Nii, stole the wind out of the sails when he took a split decision from ISAO, then lost to Shooto Infiniti winner Koyomi Matsushima.
Tanaka has been in the game just a couple of years longer than Aguon. He began his ascent as the 2007 All Japan Amateur Shooto 70kg champion, and rose dramatically as a pro with wins against Yoshifumi Nakamura and Hideki Kadowaki. He then signed to ONE Championship, and lost two decisions to outstanding grappler Herbert Burns and super striker Eric Kelly.
Back on home soil, Tanaka has gone 2-2, with very good wins over Yojiro Uchimura and Hatsu Hioki – a knockout that began the legend’s sad demise. This year hasn’t been good luck for Tanaka as he hasn’t yet seen the inside of the cage; opponents Hiroto Uesako and Mike Grundy were both pulled out of match ups in the final hour.
Aguon is a well-rounded grappler and Tanaka is a well-rounded striker. Both have a lot of experience in handling an opponent out of their comfort zone. This should be a fast-paced and technical match.
21 October 2018
Kyle Aguon vs Hiroshige Tanaka
Kenichiro Togashi vs Hiroto Uesako
Shoehei “Convoy” Masimizu vs Taiki Akiba
Welterweight Match 3×3
Takaaki Nara vs Yuta Nakamura
Kento Mizutani vs Yohei Misawa
Satoshi Miyokawa vs Yuta Miyazawa
Katsuyuki Hironaka vs Tatsuki Okano
Yuma Kitamura vs Hiroki Otani
Toshihiro Taguchi vs Takuya Saito
Katsushi Kojima vs Ang Shin