Found October 29, 2011 on Cage Writer:
LAS VEGAS - Hatsu Hioki was fighting for more than just himself tonight at UFC 137. He was dealing with the pressure of having Japanese MMA's reputation to protect. It wasn't the greatest performance tonight, but Hioki did enough to take a split decision win, 29-28, 28-29 and 29-28, over UFC veteran George Roop. Hioki, ranked by some as high as No. 2 in the world at 145 pounds, was trying to snap a real dry spell from the top fighters from Japan, who have struggled in the U.S. recently. Following the narrow victory, Hioki told UFC analyst Joe Rogan and the crowd, "Japanese MMA is not dead. It's time to change things." The 28-year-old entered this one as a minus-450 favorite. He looked composed, but not explosive. His best round came in the second when he scored a takedown with 3:27 left. Hioki quickly converted it to the mount. But once in the mount, he looked he had trouble picking an attack. That, and Roop did a nice job from the bottom of staying active. Roo...

UFC 137 preview: Hioki vs. Roop

Hatsu Hioki (24-4-2) vs. George Roop (12-7-1) Hioki, arguably the best Japanese pound-for-pound fighter of the past five years, finally makes his UFC debut against the former Rage in the Cage champion Roop. Hioki, 28, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt and talented kickboxer, has never legitimately lost a fight. All four of his setbacks were contentious decisions that could have...

UFC 137: Hatsu Hioki Vs. George Roop

UFC 137: Hatsu Hioki Vs. George Roop

Hioki Pleased with UFC Debut, But Wishes He Could Have ‘Shown More’

Hatsu Hioki discussed his successful Octagon debut against George Roop at UFC 137 with TJ De Santis.

Hatsu Hioki Hoping to Inspire Fellow Japanese Fighters

Great expectations followed Hatsu Hioki (Pictured) when the featherweight signed with the UFC. Little did fight fans know, the Japanese star is attempting to revitalize an entire nation’s future in mixed martial arts. With that amount of pressure resting on his 145 pound shoulders, perhaps that explains why the former Shooto standout was less than spectacular in his big league...

Hatsu Hioki Plans To Break Trend At UFC 137

By Raphael Garcia It must be very difficult to carry the weight of an entire country's sports scene on your shoulders. Yet it seems that the Japanese fighters moving over to the North American Mixed Martial Arts scene are taking up that challenge head on. Still, many of them have failed to live up to the standards they set while participating in combat across the Pacific Ocean...
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