DYNAMITE!! 2010 Public Press Conference
8 Shintoshin, Chuo-ku, Saitama-city
December 30, 2010 - Tokyo, Japan - Thousands of diehard fans forced their way into Shinjuku Station Square this afternoon to listen to what their favorite fighters had to say leading into the biggest show of the year: DYNAMITE!! 2010.
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The public press conference was perhaps a little shorter than in previous years, mainly due to the single-digit weather, but the turnout from the fans was record breaking.
The fighters were all in high spirits to start with, and the cheers of the crowd lifting things to a new level. In fact, Events Producer Mr.TANIKAWA even noted, "Honestly speaking, this wasn't a good year for us. Seeing all of you makes me feel this event will be a great success, and a nice lead into next year."
Head of DREAM Mr. SASAHARA stirred things up even more when he announced that the bout announced yesterday between the 2010 K-1 WGP Champion, Alistair "The Reem" OVEREEM and his challenger, Todd DUFFEE would in fact be for the Dream Heavyweight Interim Title.
The first of the fighters to speak was one half of the IGF rules bout. Bob SAPP grabbed the microphone and let roar with his trademark laugh. He then choked and sputtered for a few seconds before saying, "First of all, tomorrow I have new rules and a new opponent, so I am looking forward to a new victory." His opponent Shinichi SUZUKAWA promised to finish SAPP in the ring tomorrow. They bout will be a no-glove open-hand strikes only fight.
Andy OLOGUN was next. "To have a good new year, I need to win this fight decisively first, and that's what I plan on doing," he stated. Baseballer Katsuya FURUKI made the obvious observation that for him, everything would be new tomorrow as it is his first ever fight.
The MMA veteran Caol UNO marks his return to DREAM with tomorrow's fight. "Tomorrow will be the 10th anniversary of the show. I'm happy to be on the card. I will believe in myself and do well tomorrow. Hopefully it will lead on the better things," he said. The man he will be facing is the -10% body fat Kazuyuki MIYATA. MIYATA didn't say much, other than he promised to end the battle with his spectacular German suplex.
Ex-boxing title holder Kazuhisa WATANABE had something he wanted to clarify to the crowd. "I shivering with cold, not fear," he said with a laugh before saying he had no weapons to use in his MMA bout other than his hands, but that they would be enough to knockout his opponent. That man is the Jaguar driving cleaner, Hideo TOKORO. The Gifu Prefecture native said, "Please support tomorrow me as I will do my best."
Olympic judoka Hiroshi IZUMI seemed to be a little ticked off that his fight was early on the card. "I am proud to be a part of this event. I will ensure even the first half of this event is exciting," he promised. MINOWAMAN, unusually making sense, just said that he would make sure to fight his own fight this time.
The crazy Russian Sergey KHARITONOV was next up. Showing no signs of feeling the cold at all, he smiled and addressed the audience with, "This is a great opportunity to spend the New Year in Japan. Thanks for inviting me. I will do my best." He will be facing Light Heavyweight Grand Prix runner up, Tatsya MIZUNO. The Japanese fighter had done his homework. He stated, "Sergey is a hurdle that no Japanese fighter has managed to get over in the past. I will make sure to do it tomorrow"
K-1 Heavyweight Champion KYOTARO looked far less nervous than he usually does before a fight. "Tomorrow I plan to win. I will represent K-1 and do everything possible to ensure a victory," he proclaimed. The man he will be facing has so much confidence going into this, it is almost comical. It would be comical, if not for the face that he might just do what he says. That is, "Tomorrow is my second K-1 fight. I didn't come to lose. I am pretty sure I will win." And the man that said it is DREAM Light Heavyweight Champion, Gegard MOUSASI.
Cosplayer Yuichiro NAGASHIMA was next, and the crowd loved his samurai-like outfit. "Tomorrow I will go to Saitama and knockout my opponent while fighting in the kickboxing round, as I won't be able to win in MMA," he said of his mixed rules bout. His opponent didn't get quite the same welcome from the crowd. Shinya AOKI coldly stated, "Tomorrow I will show why I am the Lightweight Champion." Their bout will open with a 3 minute kickboxing rules bout with the second round being 5 minutes of MMA rules. If both fighters are still fighting at the end of the second round, it will be declared a draw.
The man that went looking to fight Alistair OVEREEM was next. Todd DUFFEE said confidently, "I'm excited to be in Japan. I plan on having a good fight tomorrow. I don't think Alistair has ever fought someone like me before, so it will be interesting." The Reem replied with, "It is good to be here. I am happy they found an opponent. I am happier it is for the title. I will show you a great fight tomorrow," before wishing everyone the best for 2011.
Jerome LEBANNER found himself without his opponent there today. "Hello. I am very happy to fight this Olympic boy. Judo is very important to me, and has been since my childhood. I am proud to fight him. I will do my best," he said. He had talked earlier about how he would happily play whatever game Satoshi ISHII wanted. He said he had no problem fighting him on the ground, but also said, "It would be good if he comes in with punches, no? We hit each other, and then welcome in the New Year with black eyes and bloody noses. Now, that sounds like fun!"
The most influential fighter in the sport, Kazushi SAKURABA dropped a weight class to challenge for a title in this event. "I had to wear my suit today, but forgot a shirt so have this cheap one on. Anyway, I'll do my best tomorrow," said the beer and computer game lover. Maruis "The WhiteMare" ZAROMSKIS is the one he will be facing. He promised that he was ready to defend his title with everything he had.
The -63kg MAX GP Champion, Tetsuya YAMATO looked excited to be there. "I am here from Nagoya. There are some great fighters on the card, but tomorrow I want to show the speed of us lighter fights and have a great bout with Wicky," he said. Akiyo "Wicky" NISHIURA agreed with him wholeheartedly. "Let's do it. Let's make it bloody!," he said.
Hayato "MACH" SAKURAI seemed a little more reflective today. "In my career I have noticed that I always say I am going to win. I really want to win my bout tomorrow. I am not saying I will, but I honestly want to. That's my real feeling," he said. Perhaps he was trying to quash the rumors of his possible retirement. He will be facing Jason HIGH. The American ex-UFC fighter said he hoped to have a happy start to the New Year with a win.
StrikeForce's former champion Josh THOMPSON took it upon himself to fill the hole in the card left by Gilbert MELENDEZ. Dressed in a suit he said, "It is nice to be back here fighting in Japan. I want to put on a great fight tomorrow, hopefully the most exciting one." The Crusher will also be trying to make it an exciting fight. KAWAJIRI stated, "Josh THOMPSON is one of the best in the world, and I'm happy to fight him at DYNAMITE! I think the fight will meet your expectations. TBS, make sure to air our fight. I will win it by knockout."
And the final fight on the card is the headliner title bout between Hiroyuki TAKAYA and Bibiano FERNANDES. The Canadian based Brazilian asked the crowd to come and watch the fight live. TAKAYA, perhaps feeling a little more pressure said, "Tomorrow is the 10th DYNAMITE so I can't do poorly. I want to win the title tomorrow. Thank you."
A card of 15 fights with several different rule-sets is the sort of festival only DYNAMITE!! can produce. Even Antonio INOKI was excited today, saying he thought the event could reach the unheard-of figure of 50% local viewer ratings in Japan. While tickets are selling fast, there are still a limited number available at the door tomorrow. Saitama Super Arena will open at 14:00, and the first bout is set to start at 16:00. If there is any possibly way you can be there, you will regret not doing so if you don't go. Keep looking back here for updates, and continue to check the official K-1 Facebook page and Twitter (@k1_official) for behind the scenes photos and inside information leading up to, and throughout the event.