This Saturday, Kyoji”Krazy Bee” Horiguchi has the opportunity to do two different things that no other fighter has yet done. He will try to be the first man to beat Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson at flyweight, as well as attempting to become the first Japanese UFC Champion.

Kyoji is a very talented up-and-coming fighter, with a great record and with a few more fights against some top fighters he might be a serious threat to DJ’s title reign. This makes it unfortunate that his title shot is due more to the lack of quality title opposition, than it is due to his accomplishments in the cage.

But as current bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw recently showed us, never trust the odds. In fact, Dillashaw (11-2) has less fights and more losses now as champion than Kyoji (15-1) does before fighting for the belt. Still, Horiguchi will have to fight the fight of his life against one of the best in the game if he’s going to pull out the upset.

Here are a few strategies that Horiguchi should use :

Don’t get taken down

At first, this seems so obvious, why even mention it? It’s almost like saying “just don’t let him hit you.” It’s completely true, but not very useful. But it’s something that Kyoji would be wise to remember and prepare for. Johnson’s take down’s are excellent and he mixes his setups very well with his striking. Johnson is very dangerous from on top was well, as he recently submitted Chris Cariaso with a kimura as well as a last minute armbar against John Moraga. Luckily, Kyoji has very good take down defense. As one of the very few karate fighters in the UFC, his movement helps keep him out of reach and keeps him unpredictable.

Use his explosive movement and punching power

In the flyweight division, knockouts are rare, but Horiguchi has managed to win more than 50% of his fights by either K.O. or T.K.O., thus showing he does certainly carry power with his strikes. He is also very good at covering distance with his karate style, and blitzing his opponents, he used this to great effect against Louis Gaudinot. Johnson has never been knocked out, but he has been knocked down, John Dodson showed that the champ isn’t completely invincible in their closely contested fight, as he manged to land several power shots that wobbled DJ.

Stay away from the clinch

Mighty Mouse is very good in the Thai clinch, he uses it to land punishing knee’s to the body. We saw him do this effectively against Ali Bagautinov more than once. Johnson’s trips and throws aren’t the strongest, but he is very good at switching from the over under to the Thai clinch, which means that the over under should be avoided as well.

Overall, this will be an extremely tough fight for Kyoji and most don’t expect him to win, but if we have learned anything in this sport, it’s that you can never count out anyone who steps into the cage.

About The Author

Josh Souter
Staff Writer

Josh Souter was raised in the state of Hawaii, where he recently completed his B.A. in English, before moving out to Denver with his wife. When not obsessing over MMA he enjoys training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, reading, writing, and working with computers.