ian loveland

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On the Come Up: Kyoji Horiguchi

Ian Loveland vs Kyoji Horiguchi 

Posted once before, but I saw he’s fighting next weekend and I thought this would be appropriate.

Horiguchi is being heralded as the future of JMMA and with good reason. He’s 9-1 and has shown an incredible amount of upside. If you watch him, he’s almost a carbon copy of Kid Yamamoto (unsurprisingly, that’s his head coach). His explosiveness makes him Akon by Mike Goldberg’s standards. He has power for days in his hands and legs, which he demonstrates in this fight. His defensive wrestling has shown remarkable improvement since his lost to veteran Masakatsu Ueda, due in part to his work at Alliance MMA with the bantamweight champ himself Dominick Cruz. Horiguchi does have major holes in his game though. The longer fights go on, the more touchable he is due to his hands down style of fighting. Doesn’t matter how fast/explosive you are, when a good fighter has you timed he’s going to chin check you if you don’t defend properly. The fact that he’s not a combination puncher doesn’t help. But at 22 years old, he’s only going to get better.

His next opponent is Hiromasa Ogikubo (10-2-2) at Shooto - 2nd Round 2013.