Sunday, May 18, 2014

Takayo Hashi wins DEEP JEWELS Middleweight Championship

Takayo Hashi pounds Shizuka Sugiyama
DEEP JEWELS held their latest show today at Shinjuku FACE. The big news is that for the first time DEEP JEWELS offered a show on iPPV on UStream. I hope they continue to do this because it would make my life easier. But other Japanese MMA companies have tried iPPV and then abandoned it because it doesn't generate enough revenue especially when they are going against a big show like last night's Bellator PPV. Nothing I saw on this show makes me feel that DEEP JEWELS needs to exist. I have said for a year that the women should just be absorbed into DEEP. The show was very tame especially compared to the crazy stuff that happened on the Bellator show. But the biggest problem is DEEP JEWELS simply lacks enough talent to justify full cards. The main event had Takayo Hashi against Shizuka Sugiyama for the DEEP JEWELS Middleweight Championship. Sugiyama is pretty so she could be a draw if she was a good fighter...but she's not. And Hashi has never been a draw and now she's 36 years old coming off of knee surgery. But she beat Sugiyama easily via TKO at the end of round one. And there are very few Japanese fighters in that weight class. So I don't know who DEEP JEWELS matchmaker Shigeru Saeki has in mind for Hashi. Maybe nobody. He said afterwards that Invicta is interested in Hashi. I'll get back to this later. Because Saeki knew the main event was weak, he made a big deal about Saori Ishioka returning after taking time off to start a family. She had no problem with SARAMI and Ishioka won with a first round armbar. Ishioka and Sugiyama are teammates. So they have similar problems. Both are OK but not elite fighters. And both are attractive enough to be draws if they were really good. I guess we'll see what she's like against better competition. To add star power, Saeki had DEEP JEWELS Flyweight Champion Ham Seo Hee in a kickboxing match. Afterwards, Saeki admitted that wasn't a good idea because the inclusion of kickboxing on DEEP JEWELS shows has been a long time fan beef. VV Mei made her DEEP JEWELS debut after unsuccessful attempts to fight in foreign countries. As expected, she had no trouble with Yukiko Seki. Mei won by a first round rear naked choke. In other fights, Tomo Maesawa beat Brittany Decker by unanimous decision. Brittany just couldn't seem to get going and it was too late by the time she got her act together. This could have used a third round. Ayaka Miura beat British fighter Ella Wu with a first round triangle choke. Naomi Taniyama beat Yuko Takagi by unanimous decision. And in a rookies match, Shiori Hori beat Maya Dobashi by first round armbar. Saeki said the next DEEP JEWELS show will be in August. It's interesting that the first thing Saeki said about Takayo Hashi is that Invicta is interested in her. Whether it's true or not doesn't matter. But selling fighters to the UFC, the WSOF and Invicta is probably the best revenue producer Saeki has. He's losing money on the shows. He can't fill a 500 seat hall. And that's why I continue to believe that DEEP JEWELS should be closed and folded into DEEP. It's the only way he can make money with women's MMA. But he's a stubborn old fart.

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