Aoki claims Dream lightweight title
Aoki was able to secure takedown after takedown on Hansen, but it was the Norwegian, from his back, that was outworking the Japanese grappling master, staying busy by punching and searching for submissions. Midway into the opening round, Hansen rocked Aoki with two upkicks to the head, but the referee stepped in, calling a timeout. Prior to the two to the head, Hansen had inadvertently landed an upkick to Aoki's groin, so he was given time to recuperate. Upon restart, the round continued to play out with Aoki scoring takedowns and Hansen staying busy with strikes and a strong armbar attempt.
Round two continued much the same until Aoki was able to transition to full mount. He attempted a guillotine choke from the top position and when Hansen moved to escape, he locked on an armbar that eventually finished the fight, making Aoki the new Dream lightweight champion.
The bout was Hansen's second straight fight with Aoki, the last being more than a year ago when he won at Dream 5 to capture the lightweight title. The two have met three times now with Aoki holding the edge, winning two of the three.
The Dream Featherweight Grand Prix final, however, couldn't have been any closer. Both fighting for the second time on the night,
Takaya came out looking to strike, while Fernandes immediately went in search of the takedown. Most of the opening round played out with Takaya landing the better strikes, rocking Fernandes on occasion and cutting the brow of his right eye just before the end of the round. At the same time, Fernandes scored several takedowns during the bout and took Takaya's back nearly every time he did so. As the fight wore on, Fernandes opened up his striking game, and while Takaya seemed to land the heavier blows more frequently, they went toe-to-toe in the closing minutes.
In the end, Fernandes walked away with the featherweight title via a split decision victory, two judges scoring it in his favor to one judge voting for Takaya.
Earlier in the evening, in the semifinal round, Fernandes quickly ousted
In his semifinal bout against
Dream 11 was also host to the Super Hulk Tournament semi-final round. In a seeming mismatch, five-foot-nine-inch
In his last two fights, Minowa has now defeated two of the biggest men in mixed martial arts history: Choi and
Minowa won't have to face Sapp again though, as
Minowa and Sokoudjou will now meet in the Super Hulk final, which is expected to take place at Dynamite!! 2009 on New Year's Eve.
In another mismatch,
In the featherweight Grand Prix reserve match,