This article is the play-by-play to accompany the live coverage of RIZIN 24. Live coverage of the show can be viewed here.
Main Card (3:00AM EDT / 4:00PM JST) (RIZIN Live)
Bout 1: Yusuke Yachi (21-10) vs. Juri Ohara (26-18-3) (157 lbs)
Yachi threw leg kicks to the body and legs of Ohara to start. He landed a left cross in the first minute of the fight. Another straight from Yachi seemingly rocked Ohara slightly. Ohara landed a right hand in the second minute that seemingly dropped Yachi, although it was hard to tell as he got up quickly and didn’t see hurt. Yachi caught a body kick for a takedown in the third minute of the fight. Ohara got up moments after. Yachi was able to catch another body kick, although he couldn’t get a takedown from it. Ohara came forward with punches in the fourth minute of the fight. He dropped him with two knees to the head. Ohara took half guard on the ground where he continued with strikes. Yachi started to bleed due to the strikes. In full guard, Ohara continued with strikes. Yachi tried for an armbar from the bottom which Ohara was able to escape. Ohara kept with a pace of punches on top. Yachi was able to escape the position in the closing seconds by throwing upkicks.
Yachi was looked at by a ringside doctor before the second round started. Ohara scored a body kick early in the second round. Yachi was able to charge forward and connect with punches throughout the second round. Yachi dropped Ohara with a left hand in the final minute of the round. He scored a soccer kick to the head of Ohara while he was getting up. He absorbed a few more punches before the round ended.
Like he connected with in the round before, Yachi scored a left hand in the opening minute of the third round. Ohara came forward with a flying knee in the third minute of the round that did not connect. Yachi used it to take top position on the ground. They returned to the feet moments after going down. Yachi scored a takedown in the final minute of the fight, going into half guard on top. Yachi tried getting on the back of Ohara, but instead lost the gave up to position. Ohara let a flurry of punches go from full guard until the fight ran out of time. The fight went to a split decision in the end, with the deciding judge giving the fight to Ohara.
Bout 2: Mutsuki Ebata vs. Rasta (121 lbs) (Kickboxing Bout)
Both fighters wasted no time to engage in a fast pace fight, throwing leg kicks to each other right out of the gate. Ebata swept Rasta in the second minute of the fight. Ebata landed a right cross in the second minute that caught Rasta and was counted as a knockdown. Rasta smiled following the knockdown. Ebata landed a four-punch combination in the closing seconds of the round that dropped Rasta a second time.
Rasta didn’t look rocked in the second round, being able to keep up with the pace of Ebata throughout.
Rasta’s best round was his last, being able to connect with numerous punches in the three minutes. He grazed Ebata with a spinning back kick just before the fight ran out of time. Ebata won on all three scorecards after three rounds.
Bout 3: Sudario Tsuyoshi (0-0) vs. Dylan James (0-0) (Heavyweight)
Tsuyoshi charged at James with punches immediately. James clinched up with Tsuyoshi after missing some punches. He threw knees to the body while Tsuyoshi moved him to a corner of the ring. They separated shortly after. Both throwing punches at the same time, Tsuyoshi hurt James with a right hand. Tsuyoshi stopped a takedown attempt, being able to land knees to the head while on his knees. James started to bleed, likely due to the knee strikes being thrown by Tsuyoshi. Tsuyoshi took side control, throwing punches and a knee before the round ended.
A pause came before the start of the second round so that James could be checked out by a doctor. The fight was waved off before the second round started.
Bout 4: Takahiro Ashida (23-10-2) vs. Kyohei Hagiwara (1-2) (146 lbs)
The fighters traded kicks to the body to start. Hagiwara slipped after throwing a kick, allowing Ashida to get a takedown. Hagiwara landed a series of elbows to the head while Ashida attempted the takedown. Hagiwara got up to his feet, although he was taken back down in the clinch shortly after. Getting up to a knee, Hagiwara threw punches to the head of Ashida. Ashida was able to move into full mount when the fight fully went back to the ground. A pause came in the fight was the fighters had to be moved away from the ropes. Ashida moved into half guard after the fight resumed. Ashida scored a series of hooks to the head of Hagiwara from the position. Hagiwara was able to sweep and take top position with a minute left in the fight. Ashida put in a triangle choke from the bottom that cause Hagiwara to tap out.
Bout 5: RENA (10-3) vs. Emi Tomimatsu (15-16) (117 lbs)
The first couple minuted of the fight were slow-paced. RENA eventually started to pick up the pace of striking on Tomimatsu. RENA landed a two-punch combination late in the round.
Tomimatsu clinched with RENA in the first minute of the second round. She was able to get on the back of RENA while still on the feet. Tomimatsu scored a takedown with two minutes to work. Tomimatsu got on the back fo RENA with less than two minutes in the round. RENA was able to flip around and take full guard on top to end the round.
RENA landed a series of punches early in the third round. Tomimatsu shot for a takedown, although RENA was able to resist the attempt. RENA was taken to her knees in the corner of the ring with both of her legs behind the bottom rope of the ring at one point. Tomimatsu was able to land two knees to the head from that position. They left clinch, where RENA threw numerous punches to the head and body that clearly hurt Tomimatsu. Tomimatsu shot for a takedown that RENA stuffed. RENA took a north-south position on the ground, throwing punches to the rib section of Tomimatsu from there. RENA grabbed the right arm of Tomimatsu in an attempt for a submission. RENA left the position and forced Tomimatsu to get up with just over a minute left in the fight. Tomimatsu missed a takedown attempt. RENA landed a few more punches on the feet in the closing minute. Tomimatsu landed on her back after missing another takedown. RENA threw a stomp kick to the head of Tomimatsu before the fight ran out of time. After three rounds, the judges gave the fight to RENA.
Bout 6: Kintaro (13-8-2) vs. Kenta Takizawa (10-5) (134 lbs)
Kintaro started the fight with a kick to the body. There were numerous flurries in the round that saw both fighters unload with strikes. Kintaro’s best punch was in the last minute of the round, connecting with a left cross that snapped the head of Takizawa back.
Like the round before, the fight consisted of wild combinations from both fighters. Reminiscent of the fifth minute of the fight, Kintaro hurt Takizawa with a left hand in the final minute of round two. Takizawa finished the round by chasing down Kintaro, throwing a variety of strikes including a spinning back kick.
Takizawa had a kick start to the second round, coming at Kintaro with a series of punches. Kintaro shot for a takedown, although he did not get it. Kintaro got rocked with punches later in the minute, being wobbled twice. Kintaro landed a takedown to give him time to recover. He moved into half guard on top. They worked back up to their feet with three minutes left in the round, with Kintaro putting Takizawa against the ropes. Kintaro continued to look for a takedown against Takizawa, who was stuck in a corner of the ring. They remained in the position until the round ran out of time. Needing judges to find a winner, the fight went to a split decision that favoured Takizawa.
Bout 7: Yuuki Kitagawa vs. Taishi Hiratsuka (132 lbs) (Kickboxing Bout)
Both fighters landed numerous kicks to start the fight, going to the body or legs. Kitagawa landed a clean combination of punches in the final minute of the round.
A wild exchange early in the second round saw a left hook connect and knock out Kitagawa, ending the fight.
Bout 8: Takasuke Kume (23-6-3) vs. Satoru Kitaoka (42-20-10) (157 lbs)
Kitaoka scored a takedown in the opening minute of the fight. Kume attempted a guillotine choke from the bottom position, letting go after Kitaoka was able to move into half guard. Kume was able to escape the position and bring the fight back to the feet with two minutes left in the round. Kume landed a series of punches that hurt Kitaoka. They clinched up after. The referee separated them due to inactivity after less than a minute in the clinch. Kitaoka put in a guillotine choke, taking the fight to the ground. The round concluded with Kitaoka attempting a choke on the ground.
Kitaoka clinched in a corner with Kume to start the second round. The referee separated them eventually, although they returned to a clinch immediately. The fighters were separated many times, but often went back into a clinch. Kume landed a two-punch combination on Kitaoka in the final minute of the round before they clinched again.
The fighters exchanged a few punches before clinching again. A pause was called as Kitaoka had a cut above his left eye. Kume got a takedown from a clinch in the second minute of the round. Getting up for a moment, the fight went back down as Kitaoka put in a guillotine choke. Kume eventually popped out of the choke and landed punches to the body of Kitaoka from full guard. The fight returned to the feet with Kume still pressed on Kitaoka. They went back to stand-up with 30 seconds left in the fight. Kume landed punches before returning to a clinch for the rest of the fight. After 15 minutes of battle, the fight went to Kume via split decision.
Bout 9: Koji Takeda (10-1) vs. Yuki Kawana (16-4-5) (157 lbs)
The first few minutes of the fight saw the fighters whiff with punches, trying to figure each other out. They clinched in the fourth minute of the round, with Takeda putting Kawana in a corner. Kawana attempted a takedown in the final minute of the round, although Takeda was able to stop it at his knees.
Kawana landed a clean right hand early in the second round. He landed two more on his backfoot later in the minute. Takeda put Kawana in a corner of the ring to stop his momentum. Takeda got a takedown for a moment in the second minute of the round. Kawana was able to put Takeda against the corner after escaping the takedown. The referee separated them eventually. Takeda failed to get a takedown in the third minute of the round. Kawana landed another hard right hook after Takeda left the clinch.
Takeda put Kawana in a corner of the ring to start the third round. Kawana tried to get a takedown from the position before they separated. Kawana clipped Takeda with a few hooks in the second minute of the round. He responded with one of his own a minute later. Kawana consistently connected with a right cross throughout the round. Takeda was returning with heat as well, connecting with a two-punch combo in the final minute of the fight. Takeda threw head kicks while Kawana kept with punches before the fight ran out of time. A split decision went to Takeda after three rounds.
Bout 10: Kai Asakura (15-2) vs. Shoji Maruyama (18-12-1) (134 lbs)
Asakura threw a head kick early in the first round that Maruyama blocked. Asakura landed a hard right hook to Maruyama. Moments later, Maruayama was dropped by a two-punch combination in the third minute of the fight. Asakura followed up with a kick to the head of Maruyama while he was getting up. The referee stopped the fight moments after.
Bout 11: Tenshin Nasukawa vs. Kouzi (129 lbs) (Kickboxing Bout)
Nasukawa landed a punch in the first minute, scoring with a knee to the body after before clinching for a moment. He scored a two-punch combination on Kouzi after a strike missed him. Nasukawa scored with a knee to the head in the second minute of the fight. He scored a second one moments later, tossing Kouzi to the ground afterwards. Nasukawa scored with a series of punches in the closing moments of the round.
A doctor checked out the cuts on Kouzi’s face before the second round started. Kouzi was able to land a right hook early in the second round as part of a flurry of strikes from both fighters. Nasukawa landed a left hand halfway through the round that wobbled Kouzi. Nasukawa continued to throw flying knees to Kouzi, sometimes ending combinations with the move.
Nasukawa missed a rolling thunder attempt early in the third round. Nasukawa remained dominant in the third round, putting together combinations of punches and knees mostly. Nasukawa’s nine-minute performance earned him a unanimous decision victory.