DREAM 10 brought us one big surprise, one big comeback, and a card full of entertaining fights. A new welterweight grand prix winner was crowned while Paulo Filho and Shinya Aoki made significant comebacks.
Welterweight Grand Prix Semi Finals
Jason High v. Andre Galvao
High earns a tough victory winning by split decision. He moves on to the final.
Hayato Sakurai v. Marius Zaromskis
In the biggest upset of the night Zaromskis puts away Sakurai by KO (head kick no less) in the very first round. Zaromskis’ only chance was to win on the feet but he took full advantage knocking off the Japanese veteran to move on to the finals against High.
Zaromskis showcases his stand up yet again KO’ing High by head kick in the first round. Unless you’re an avid Cage Rage fan this guy has come out of nowhere to win this tournament. He beat a legend in Sakurai while his only two losses of his career have come against Che Mills who was recently on The Ultimate Fighter Nine but was eliminated in the first round by eventual winner James Wilks.
Zaromskis is still a bit of a mystery. But after beating guys like Sakurai and High in impressive fashion, on the same night, he is definitely someone to keep an eye on.
Vitor Ribeiro v. Shinya Aoki
Aoki used his still developing but much improved striking game to beat Ribeiro by unanimous decision. While beating a notorious grappler like Ribeiro on the feet is not impressive it was still a tough fight to come back to after moving up in weight and getting crushed by Sakurai.
This showed that Aoki is still a top contender at lightweight and will be a dangerous test for his next opponent Joachim Hansen. Ribeiro on the other hand probably took this fight too soon having only had one fight since his almost two year layoff. Hopefully he can come back and show why he was considered a top lightweight back in 2007.
Paulo Filho v. Melvin Manhoef
Filho came out and showed the world that he can still be dangerous winning by arm bar in the first round. While beating a noted kickboxer by submission isn’t exactly impressive what is impressive is that Filho appeared to come out focused and prepared for this fight. This was in serious question after his last two perplexing outings but it appears Filho is back on track to become a serious middleweight contender again.
Jesse Taylor v. Dong Sik Yoon
Taylor wins an unfortunate fight by TKO after Yoon goes down with an injury in the first round. While this isn’t the way Taylor wanted to win I’m sure he’ll take the victory which extends his streak to seven. Hopefully we’ll see him against tougher competition soon.