Hideo Tokoro Takes Dream Japan Bantamweight Grand Prix; Takaya and Mousasi Retain Belts

Dream on Saturday held the finals for its Japan Bantamweight Grand Prix, which shared the spotlight with a pair of title fights, at Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo.

Hideo Tokoro, following a rough patch in 2009 and 2010 where he went 3-4, has recovered well, winning the Japan Bantamweight Grand Prix with a unanimous decision victory over Masakazu Imanari.

The win was his fourth straight, including the opening two rounds of the tournament when he defeated Atsushi Yamamoto and Yoshiro Maeda in one night.

Kenji Osawa took a unanimous decision from Keisuke Fujiwara in the tournament’s consolation fight. He was kept out of the finals by Imanari.

Dream featherweight champion Hiroyuki Takaya held on to his belt with the slimmest of margins, taking a split decision over Kazuyuki Miyata. It was a controversial decision with Takaya having to go to the hospital after the fight to get damage to his eye checked out, according to Sherdog.com.

Dream light heavyweight champion and Strikeforce fighter Gegard Mousasi left no doubters in his title defense. He finished of Hiroshi Izumi with a TKO stoppage due to strikes late in the first round of their fight.

Mousasi was coming off of a draw with Keith Jardine after losing a point for an illegal upkick at an April Strikeforce event.

Top 10 ranked Tatsuya Kawajiri rebounded from a drubbing at the hands of Strikeforce champion Gilbert Melendez by pounding out UFC veteran Drew Fickett. Kawajiri finished Fickett with strikes less than five minutes into the fight. It was an important victory for Kawajiri, who has alternated between wins and losses the last couple of years.

Welterweight champion Marius Zaromskis also won a unanimous decision in a non-title bout with Eiji Ishikawa.

Dream 17: Fight for Japan Results:

-Hiroyuki Takaya def. Kazuyuki Miyata by Split Decision, R3
-Hideo Tokoro def. Masakazu Imanari by Unanimous Decision, R2
-Gegard Mousasi def. Hiroshi Izumi by TKO (Strikes) at 3:29, R1
-Tatsuya Kawajiri def. Drew Fickett by TKO (Strikes) at 4:41, R1
-Kenji Osawa def. Keisuke Fujiwara by Unanimous Decision, R2
-Tatsuya Mizuno def. Trevor Prangley by KO (Knee) at 4:41, R1
-Marius Zaromskis def. Eiji Ishikawa by Unanimous Decision, R2
-Eiji Mitsuoka def. Bruno Carvalho by Unanimous Decision, R2