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UFC returns to Japan in February for first time in over a decade

Some of the UFC's Japanese fighters that may compete on the February card include Riki Fukuda (left), Norifumi "Kid" Yamamoto, Yoshihiro Akiyama, Michihiro Omigawa and Yuhsin Okami.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship announced Tuesday the promotion will return to Japan for the first time since December 2000 when UFC 29 took place at Differ Ariake Arena in Tokyo.

On Feb. 26, 2012, the UFC will hold a live event at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, the same location that hosted so many Pride FC events in the past and is also the home of Japan’s DREAM organization.

Dana White commented:

“It’s been over 10 years since a UFC event was held in Japan and we’re pumped to bring the fastest growing sport in the world there once again. Japan has played a huge role in getting the sport to where it is today. UFC stars such as “Rampage” Jackson, Wanderlei Silva, “Minotauro” Nogueira all made names for themselves fighting in the Pride organization and dozens more fought in front of the passionate Japanese fans at some point in their careers. Japan has also produced world class fighters such as Akiyama, Gomi and Yushin Okami. They have all headlined major UFC events all over the world. Now, this February, the wait is finally over – we’re coming back to Japan.”

Zuffa LLC Asia Executive Vice President and Managing Director Mark Fischer said they hope to make the UFC coming to Japan an annual event. Although the UFC has held events in Japan three times previously, the February show will mark the first time since ZUFFA purchased the company in 2001.

Stay tuned to ProMMAnow.com (www.prommanow.com) as more details are announced for this card.

HT: MMAFighting

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