Pancrase: Yes, We Are Hybrid Wrestlers 1 – A Historic Night in MMA

On September 21, 1993, the world of mixed martial arts (MMA) witnessed a groundbreaking event that would shape the future of the sport. Pancrase: Yes, We Are Hybrid Wrestlers 1, held at the Tokyo Bay NK Hall in Urayasu, Chiba, Japan, marked the birth of Pancrase Hybrid Wrestling, a promotion that would go on to produce numerous MMA champions.

The event was the brainchild of professional wrestlers Masakatsu Funaki and Minoru Suzuki. Inspired by a legitimate match between Ken Shamrock and Don Nielsen, they questioned the notion that audiences wouldn’t pay to see real matches. This led to the formation of Pancrase, named after the ancient Olympic sport of Pankration, which combined various forms of fighting into one sport.

The inaugural event featured a card of future MMA champions, each bringing their unique fighting styles to the ring. The matches were intense, showcasing the hybrid wrestling style that Pancrase would become known for.

Ken Shamrock, a future UFC Hall of Famer, faced off against Masakatsu Funaki in a thrilling match. Shamrock emerged victorious, submitting Funaki with an arm-triangle choke in the first round. This match set the tone for the event, demonstrating the high level of skill and intensity that Pancrase brought to the MMA world.

Kazuo Takahashi faced George Weingeroff in another exciting match. Takahashi knocked out Weingeroff with palm strikes in the first round, showcasing the striking skills that were a key part of Pancrase’s hybrid wrestling style.

Takaku Fuke and Vernon White battled it out in a grappling showdown. Fuke submitted White with an armbar in the first round, demonstrating the effectiveness of submission techniques in Pancrase’s hybrid wrestling.

Bas Rutten, another future UFC Hall of Famer, faced Ryushi Yanagisawa. Rutten knocked out Yanagisawa with a palm strike in the first round, further highlighting the striking prowess of Pancrase fighters.

Finally, Minoru Suzuki faced Katsuomi Inagaki in a match that showcased the grappling skills of Pancrase fighters. Suzuki submitted Inagaki with a rear-naked choke in the first round, demonstrating the effectiveness of submission techniques in Pancrase’s hybrid wrestling.

Pancrase: Yes, We Are Hybrid Wrestlers 1 was a historic event that showcased the unique hybrid wrestling style of Pancrase. It marked the beginning of a new era in MMA, introducing the world to a new style of fighting that combined striking and grappling in a way that had never been seen before. The event laid the foundation for the future of Pancrase and the sport of MMA, producing numerous champions and influencing the development of the sport for years to come.

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Pancrase

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