Tuesday, November 29, 2022

DREAM Announces New Partner, Declares War Against UFC

By MATT BOONE
MMANEWS.COM Staff Writer

The parent company of DREAM and K-1, Fighting and Entertainment Group (FEG) held a press conference on Friday to announce a new partnership with a Chinese investment group called PUJI Capital, a deal that could be worth over 200 million dollars.

During the press conference, K-1 president Sadaharu Tanikawa declared war against the UFC and pro wrestling promotion WWE. “This is a declaration of war against WWE and UFC. From Asia, we will take over the world,” stated Tanikawa.

Later during the same press conference, Tanikawa claimed that it's basically an impossible task to try and compete in the U.S. “We won't stand a chance in the American market, so we will spread to the rest of the world,” said the K-1 president.

So what exactly is the war being fought over? Tanikawa claims they are going to fight to make the Japanese MMA market more relevant in the international MMA picture. “When K-1 and PRIDE were competing against each other, 80 percent of the martial arts market was in Japan. It is now the opposite and Japan is only 20 percent. We were worried that Japan would be left behind if we let this continue, it is unacceptable. We needed to change our business model.”

Tanikawa would go on to reference Dana White, and the next big U.S. vs. Japan focused individual fight between top lightweight contenders Shinya Aoki and Gilbert Melendez — a rematch that is at this point is not official in any way. “We've let Dana White get a lead on us. Before Aoki beats Melendez, we must win as promoters.”

So the general goal seems to be to get MMA as a whole back to the days of UFC vs. PRIDE, where Japan was viewed by most as the superior MMA market? Dream on guys. Get it? DREAM? I dunno.

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