Friday, July 14, 2017

Syuri vs Chan-Mi Jeon added to Sept. 23 UFC show

The UFC held a press conference in Tokyo today to announce several matches for UFC Fight Night 117 Sept. 23 at Saitama Super Arena. One of those matches will have Syuri vs Chan-Mi Jeon in a Strawweight match. Didn't someone predict a few months ago that Syuri would appear on this show? Oh, that would be ME! So obviously I'm not surprised. If you're going to talk about Syuri, you have to talk about current Pancrase owner Mazakasu Sakai. Syuri was a dancer when she began to work as Karate Girl for the pro wrestling parody company Hustle. Sakai owned Hustle and after he closed it, he opened Smash. Syuri worked there too. The plan at the time was for Smash to be pro wrestling and MMA but the MMA part never took off. Sakai planned for Syuri to do both pro wrestling and MMA. When the MMA part of Smash didn't happen, he had Syuri do kickboxing for Krush and she became a champion. After Sakai closed Smash, he bought Pancrase. Meanwhile Syuri worked for Reina and other pro wrestling companies. But I wasn't surprised when in Jan. 2016, Sakai announced that Syuri would fight for Pancrase. The goal was for her to get to the UFC. I always thought her physical skills were more suited for MMA than pro wrestling. Syuri trains at the Tokyo branch of the Dutch gym Vos. Her record is 5-0. Her opponent is 19 year old Korean Chan-Mi Jeon. She made her UFC debut on short notice in June. The problem was she looked befuddled against southpaw JJ Aldrich. I'm not sure if a full camp will make much of a difference. Normally a UFC opponent should be a step up in competition for Syuri. I'm not sure that's true in this case. Syuri is a very polished fighter already. And Jeon seemed rough in her UFC debut. It might be too soon to expect much improvement from her. Anyway, congratulations to Syuri for making the UFC.

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