by Scott Petersen, translation by Naho Fujisawa
Nobuhiko Takada made an appearance with Shigeru Saeki and announced 14 of the 16 participants in the Pride Bushido Welterweight Grand Prix. The first round of the event will take place on June 4th at the Saitama Super Arena, which is a big stepping stone as it will be the biggest venue ever for the Bushido series.

In addition to the announcement of 14 participants in the 183-pound tournament, Pride also announced two specific first round match-ups: Makoto Takimoto vs. Gegard Mousasi, and Ryo Chonan vs. Joey Villasenor.

Fighters in attandance at the press conference included Yoon Dong Sik, Hector Lombard, and Kazuo Misaki.

Misaki, who lost at the hands of Dan Henderson in April, wants revenge. Misaki said, “I would like to have a fight against Dan Henderson again on the final round, even though Henderson hasn’t been finalized yet as a participant.”

Misaki continued, “My goal is to reach to the top, and to settle the fight with Dan… I know it is going to be hard for me, but I am going to win on the final round with Japanese spirit in my heart.”

The 14 announced participants are:
-Makoto Takimoto
-Gegard Mousasi
-Ryo Chonan
-Joey Villasenor
-Akihiro Gono
-Kazuo Misaki
-Yoon Dong Sik
-Denis Kang
-Paulo Filho
-Phil Baroni
-Murilo “Ninja” Rua
-Murilo Bustamante
-Amar Suloev
-Hector Lombard

The first round of the tournament takes place on June 4th, and it debuts that same day on North American pay-per-view.