Mizuto Hirota vs. Daisuke Nakamura official for DEEP: 66 Impact

Shigeru Saeki (DEEP CEO) has today announced an exciting match-up in the Lightweight division.

Former DEEP Lightweight Champion and overall fan favorite, Daisuke Nakamura welcomes back Mizuto Hirota, who returns to DEEP following a short stay in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

DEEP: 66 Impact is scheduled to take place April 29th at the Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan. And you can purchase the card on internet pay-per-view via Ustream for just $10/£6.00.

Daisuke Nakamura (27-14), a Mixed Martial Arts veteran who looks to get back in title contention, after losing his Lightweight crown to Satoru Kitaoka, steps back into the ring for the first time this year.

Prior to his last outing, Nakamura was on a four-fight win streak, which included winning the DEEP Lightweight title by defeating Yasuaki Kishimoto and then successfully defending it against Takafumi Ito.

Having been involved in the sport for over a decade, Nakamura has fought a who’s who on the Asian MMA scene. With notable names like Jutaro Nakao, Hideo Tokoro, Katsunori Kikuno, Naoyuki Kotani, Akihiro Gono, Seichi Ikemoto and Keita Nakamura under his belt. The creative grappler now adds another well-known name to an already impressive resume.

Mizuto Hirota (14-7-1) returns to the famed four corners of DEEP for the first time since 2012, when the Japanese native left for the US on a two-fight win streak, after recovering from a horrific injury courtesy of submission specialist Shinya Aoki.

The former DEEP & Sengoku Lightweight Champion made his way stateside to compete for Strikeforce. Hirota met hard-nosed veteran Pat Healy. And after making his promotional debut, Hirota went on to lose a somewhat controversial Unanimous Decision to the hometown favorite.

Now recognized by a much larger audience, the 32-year-old crossed over to the UFC, dropping down to Featherweight. Mizuto lost his opening two bouts (Rani Yahya & Rodrigo Damm) under the bright lights of the UFC, and shortly after received his walking papers.

Currently on a three-fight losing streak, Hirota returns home to one of Asia’s most respected establishments, and searches for his first win since February of 2012.

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DEEP: 66 Impact will see five titles up for grabs — Light Heavyweight, Welterweight, Lightweight, Featherweight and Bantamweight.

The main attraction of the evening will pit Lightweight Champion Satoru Kitaoka and Naoto Miyazaki, who earned his shot at gold after winning the 155-lb Grand Prix.

Featherweight Champion Kazunori Yokota targets yet another win, while Katsunori Tsuda, currently on a three-fight win streak challenges the Champion, and looks to be the first man to defeat Yokota in over four years.

Light Heavyweight Kingpin Yoshiyuki Nakanishi puts his belt on the line against the-always-fun Shunsuke Inoue, in what should be an absolute war between two heavy handed strikers.

Former Champion Takafumi Otsuka looks to regain his Bantamweight strap, when he’s paired off against Kenji Osawa for the vacant belt.

Winner of four straight, Yuta Watanabe takes on 37-year-old Taisuke Okuno for the vacant Welterweight title. This marks a huge occasion for both men, as neither have held Championship gold throughout their career.

DEEP, 4/29/14
“DEEP: 66 Impact”
Korakuen Hall
Tokyo, Japan

DEEP Lightweight title
Satoru Kitaoka vs. Naoto Miyazaki

DEEP Featherweight title
Kazunori Yokota vs. Katsunori Tsuda

DEEP Light Heavyweight title
Yoshiyuki Nakanishi vs. Shunsuke Inoue

Vacant: DEEP Bantamweight title
Takafumi Otsuka vs. Kenji Osawa

Vacant: DEEP Welterweight title
Yuta Watanabe vs. Taisuke Okuno

Lightweight Bout
Mizuto Hirota vs. Daisuke Nakamura

Featherweight Bout
Masanori Kanehara vs. Toshiaki Kitada

Flyweight Bout
Sota Kojima vs. Kota Ishibashi

Lightweight Bout
Hidetaka Monma vs. Ken Hamamura

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Photo credit: Josh Hedges/ZUFFA LLC via Getty Images
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Categories: Asian MMA, DEEP, Featured, Japan, MMA

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