BALTIMORE – Takanori Gomi‘s next fight is likely to take place in his native Japan, according to UFC President Dana White.
“It makes a lot of sense to have Gomi on the card,” he said following UFC 172, where Gomi won a decision on the pay-per-view event’s FOX Sports 1-televised prelims. “I’m cool with him fighting (more in the U.S.), but we’re going to need him in Japan.”
UFC 172 took place at Maryland’s Baltimore Arena.
White did not mention an opponent for Gomi (35-9 MMA, 4-4 UFC), who fought three grueling rounds and earned unanimous 29-28 scores against Strikeforce veteran turned UFC fighter Isaac Vallie-Flagg (14-5-1 MMA, 1-2 UFC). It was Gomi’s fourth UFC win and got him back in the winner’s circle after a controversial split-decision loss to Diego Sanchez in his most recent fight, which took place in Japan.
All in all, the former lightweight PRIDE champion has fought twice in Saitama, Japan, the site of several of his fights in the now-defunct promotion, and once in Macau, China, while competing under the UFC banner.
The 35-year-old veteran told MMAjunkie he doesn’t think he’ll be fighting much longer and stressed his desire to get a fight that would earn him a title shot.
“The Fireball Kid” will make sacrifices for a chance at the UFC lightweight belt.
“If I get a title shot, I will quit drinking,” he said via translator following his fight. “I’m thinking about retirement, but I know there’s going to be fun out there waiting for me to fight, so I’m still fighting.”