Valkyrie (mixed martial arts)

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Valkyrie
Former type Private
Industry Mixed martial arts promotion
Fate Dissolved
Predecessors Smackgirl
Founded September 2008 (2008-09)
Founders Toyoki Kubo
Defunct 2011 (2011)
Headquarters Tokyo, Japan
Area served Tokyo, Japan
Key people Toyoki Kubo (GCM president)
Yasuko Mogi (producer, matchmaker)
Parent GCM Communication Co. Ltd.
Website Official website at the Wayback Machine (archived November 20, 2011)

Valkyrie (ヴァルキリー Varukirī?), sometimes styled VALKYRIE in capitals, was a women's mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion. It was the sister of Japanese MMA promotion Cage Force, both operated by Greatest Common Multiple (GCM) Communication. Contrary to other Japanese women MMA promotions at the time, it featured a cage instead of a ring and used the same venues as Cage Force.

History[edit]

Around 2004 (2004), GCM Communication, the parent company of Japanese promotion Cage Force, had already hosted some all-women MMA events named Cross Section[1] and with the imminent dissolution of female MMA promotion Smackgirl, GCM Communication announced at the event Cage Force 08 on September 27, 2008 (2008-09-27) that the company would hold a new all-female promotion which would be named Valkyrie and would have its first event on November 8, 2008 (2008-11-08) in a double-header event with Cage Force.[2][3] Takeshi Nagao, a former Smackgirl executive, and Yasuko Mogi were appointed as producers.[1] Mogi announced several details of the promotion, such as the weight classes and the rules, which would be essentially the same as those used in Cage Force, and also that former Smackgirl Lightweight Champion Yuka Tsuji would participate in the promotion in a match against Mei Yamaguchi.[3][4] Other matches would be announced at later dates. As part of its business strategy, Valkyrie events were held before Cage Force, in this way sharing venue, cage and other resources.[5]

Valkyrie first event was held as planned on November 8, 2008 (2008-11-08), with a card featuring a victorious Tsuji, Yasuko Tamada, Tomomi Sunaba and Roxanne Modafferi against their rivals.[6]

In its second event, Valkyrie 02, on April 25, 2009 (2009-04-25), Valkyrie crowned its first featherweight champion with Yuka Tsuji defeating American fighter Kate Martinez[7][8]

The next Valkyrie event, title Cage Force & Valkyrie, was co-promoted with Cage Force and featured three female bouts. It took place on July 12, 2009 (2009-07-12).[9][10] Mei Yamaguchi won the tournament to become the next challenger for the featherweight title.

Valkyrie 03 was held on October 24, 2009 (2009-10-24).[11] Due to an injury, Yuka Tsuji would be unable to defend her title against Mei Yamaguchi, so it was decided to postpone that match for another event.[12] Due to this, Yasuko Mogi stepped up to fight again against Misaki Takimoto in the main bout.[13] Future Jewels featherweight champion Naho Sugiyama debuted professionally in this event.[14]

On February 11, 2010 (2010-02-11) Valkyrie 04 was held. The event featured as the main bout Yuka Tsuji against Mei Yamaguchi for the featherweight title as well as the first round of the flyweight tournament to crown the first champion of the promotion.[15] In a big upset in the history of women's MMA, Yamaguchi defeated Tsuji in the first round of their match, becoming the featherweight champion, and giving Tsuji her second professional defeat and the first since 2003.[16][17][18]

For the next event, Valkyrie 05 held on April 11, 2010 (2010-04-11), Yasuko Tamada was originally slated to face Naoko Omuro for Valkyrie's flyweight championship, but Omuro suffered an injury and was forced to withdraw, being replaced by Yukiko Seki, who took the fight on short notice.[19] and the championship bout was postponed until June 2010 (2010-06). A few days before the event, Ayame Miura got injured and was replaced by Megumi Yabushita.[20] Yabushita and Kyoko Takabayashi, who defeated standout Emi Fujino, were the more notable winners of the event.[21]

On June 19, 2010 (2010-06-19), Valkyrie 06 was held. During the event, future star Rin Nakai beat seasoned veteran Megumi Yabushita and in the flyweight tournament final Yasuko Tamada defeated Naoko Omuro to become Valkyrie's fist champion in that weight.[22][23]

Valkyrie 07, held on September 26, 2010 (2010-09-26), was an event with only three professional MMA bouts, two of which were part of the tournament to crown the first openweight champion of the promotion.[24][25] Rin Nakai and Mizuho Sato advanced to the final of the tournament.

For the next event of the promotion, Valkyrie 08, Rin Nakai and Mizuho Sato were set to fight for Valkyrie openweight title and Mei Yamaguchi would fight against Kyoko Takabayashi to defend Valkyrie featherweight title.[26] On November 28, 2010 (2010-11-28) the event took place, with Nakai becoming the openweight champion and Yamaguchi barely defending the featherweight title with a majority draw in a very controversial decision.[27][28] Also notably, Naho Sugiyama defeated flyweight champion Yasuko Tamada in a non-title bout.

After several months with no news from the promotion, on April 13, 2011 (2011-04-13), in a notable development for female MMA promotions in Japan, Yasuko Mogi, matchmaker of Valkyrie, in an effort to keep Valkyrie alive, given that GCM Communication was apparently out of business with no other event planned, was present during the press conference of Jewels and announced along with Shigeru Saeki, Jewels matchmaker, that some of the MMA bouts of the  () Jewels event would have the theme Jewels vs Valkyrie, where fighters representing their respective promotions would face each other, starting with Misaki Takimoto vs. Naho Sugiyama and Miyoko Kusaka vs. Sachiko Yamamoto.[29][30][31]

After the Jewels vs. Valkyrie theme in Jewels 13th Ring & 14th Ring, followed also in Jewels 15th Ring, and due to the lack of Valkyrie events, fighters from the Valkyrie promotion started joining rival Japanese promotion Jewels.[32] Some of them had already participated in other MMA promotions already.

On November 11, 2011 (2011-11-11), members of Wajyutsu Keisyukai announced the formation of a new players association to separate themselves from GCM Communication and its president Toyoki Kubo[33][34] due to the lack of activity of GCM Communication which had not held any new MMA event since November 28, 2010 (2010-11-28) and had not paid storage fees and other payments. A few weeks later, at Jewels 17th Ring on December 17, 2013 (2013-12-17) Yasuko Mogi became the matchmaker of Jewels and this effectively meant the end for the Valkyrie promotion.

Rules[edit]

Generally speaking, the rules were based on Cage Force rules, which in turn were similar to the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts, minus elbow strikes to the head and no ground-and-pound in amateur bouts.[35][36][3] With respect to the length of matches, regular bouts were three three-minute rounds and title bouts were three five-minute rounds.[35]

Weight classes[edit]

These were the official weight classes used by the promotion.

Weight class name Upper limit
in kilograms (kg) in pounds (lb)
Flyweight 45.4 100
Bantamweight 48.5 107
Featherweight 52.2 115
Lightweight 56.7 125
Welterweight 61.2 135
Openweight No weight limit

Valkyrie events[edit]

Event name Date Venue Location
Valkyrie 08 November 28, 2010 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 07 September 26, 2010 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 06 June 19, 2010 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 05 April 11, 2010 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 04 February 11, 2010 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 03 October 24, 2009 Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Cage Force & Valkyrie July 12, 2009 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 02 April 25, 2009 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan
Valkyrie 01 Cage Force-EX November 8, 2008 Differ Ariake Arena Ariake, Tokyo, Japan

Champions[edit]

Class Champion Period Defenses
Openweight Japan Rin Nakai November 28, 2010 (2010-11-28)—2011 (2011) 0
Featherweight Japan Mei Yamaguchi February 11, 2010 (2010-02-11)—2011 (2011) 1
Featherweight Japan Yuka Tsuji April 25, 2009 (2009-04-25)—February 11, 2010 (2010-02-11) 0
Flyweight Japan Yasuko Tamada June 19, 2010 (2010-06-19)—2011 (2011) 0

See also[edit]

Cage Force

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Breen, Jordan (2008-10-08). "Valkyrie Takes Flight Nov. 8". USA: Sherdog. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  2. ^ "【GCM】11・8金網の女子総合格闘技イベント旗揚げ!辻結花の参戦決定". News (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2008-09-28. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  3. ^ a b c Ihara, Yoshinori (2008-09-28). 女子版ケージフォースが11.8ディファで旗揚げ. News (in Japanese). Japan: Bout Review. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  4. ^ Hirata, Shu (2008-09-28). "VALKYRIE - 11/08/2008: 'Women's Version of Cage Force Begins!'". News. United States: ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  5. ^ Hirata, Shu (2009-03-11). "VALKYRIE - 04/25/2009: Smart Strategy? - About Japanese Women's MMA". News. United States: ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  6. ^ Loiseleur, Tony (2008-11-08). "Tsuji Decisions Hajime at Valkyrie Premiere; Modafferi Victorious". Articles. USA: Sherdog. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  7. ^ Nelson, Chris (2009-04-25). "Tsuji Subs Martinez, Miyazawa Rolls at Valkyrie/Cage Force Double-Header". United States: Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  8. ^ Loiseleur, Tony (2009-04-25). "Cage Force Headliner Scrapped; Tsuji Takes Valkyrie Crown". Articles. United States: Sherdog. p. 2. Retrieved 2013-07-08. 
  9. ^ Endow, Wesley (2009-07-12). "Hamanaka Wins by DQ in Cage Force". News. United States: Sherdog. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  10. ^ Kuno, Yoshi (2009-07-15). "V一、接戦制す。辻結花への再挑戦権獲得". Reports (in Japanese). Japan: Bout Review. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  11. ^ Kuno, Yoshi (2009-10-29). "瀧本、茂木にTKO勝ち。大室は判定勝ち". Reports (in Japanese). Japan: Bout Review. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  12. ^ "【ヴァルキリー】10・24辻結花が怪我で欠場、V一とのタイトル戦は延期". News (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2009-08-27. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  13. ^ "【ヴァルキリー】10・24瀧本美咲VS茂木康子が決定!「練習仲間だけどむしろ殴りたい」(茂木)". News (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2009-09-30. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  14. ^ Sargent, Robert (2009-10-25). "Greatest Common Multiple: “Valkyrie 3” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  15. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-02-11). "Greatest Common Multiple “Valkyrie 4” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  16. ^ Breen, Jordan (2010-02-11). "Yamaguchi Stuns Tsuji at Valkyrie 4". Articles. United States: Sherdog. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  17. ^ Hirata, Shu (2010-02-17). "VALKYRIE 04 - 02/11/2010: V Hajime Shocked Yuka Tsuji Capturing the Valkyrie Title!". ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  18. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-02-11). "Greatest Common Multiple “Valkyrie 4” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  19. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-04-11). "Greatest Common Multiple “Valkyrie 5” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  20. ^ Hirata, Shu (2010-04-07). "VALKYRIE - 04/11/2010: Megumi Yabushita Back in the Ring This Weekend!". United States: ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  21. ^ Hirata, Shu (2010-04-12). "VALKYRIE - 04/11/2010: Takabayashi Edges Out Fujino, Yabushita Submits Kasai and More - Full Results". United States: ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-10. 
  22. ^ Herbertson, Daniel (2010-06-19). "Yasuko Tamada Captures Flyweight Title, Rin Nakai moves to 7-0 at Valkyrie". USA: MMAFighting.com. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  23. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-06-19). "Greatest Common Multiple “Valkyrie 6” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  24. ^ 【ヴァルキリー】中井りんが鮮やかな一本勝ち!トーナメント決勝は佐藤瑞穂と. Results (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2010-09-26. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  25. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-09-27). "Rin Nakai Moves To 8-0 At GCM: Valkyrie 7". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  26. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-09-27). "Two Title Fights Set For Valkyrie 8 In November". News. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  27. ^ Loiseleur, Tony (2010-11-28). "'V-Hajime' Retains, Nakai Nabs Valkyrie Open Weight Title". News. United States: Sherdog. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  28. ^ Sargent, Robert (2010-11-28). "Greatest Common Multiple “Valkyrie 8” Results". Articles. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  29. ^ Pozen, Frank (2011-04-13). "Ham Seo Hee released from JEWELS, Ishioka vs Celine for tournament slot". Canada. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  30. ^ Sargent, Robert (2011-04-13). "Four Fights Announced For May 14 Jewels Doubleheader". News. Canada: MMARising.com. Retrieved 2013-07-03. 
  31. ^ 【ジュエルス】5・14ヴァルキリーとの戦争勃発!「勝ち続けてジュエルスをのっとる」(茂木). News (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2011-04-13. Retrieved 2011-05-05. 
  32. ^ "Exclusive : V.V Travels to Finland for First Time to Challenge Nordic’s Best Kankaanpää". Sweden: MMA Viking. 2012-03-06. Retrieved 2013-07-02. 
  33. ^ 新組織「和術慧舟會選手会」始動。創始者の西良典氏も了承 [New Wajyutsu Keisyukai players association starting. Founder, Yoshinori Nishi, consents.] (in Japanese). Japan: Bout Review. 2011-11-11. Retrieved 2013-07-02. 
  34. ^ 【ニュース】和術慧舟會が和術慧舟會選手会として再スタート [News - Wajyutsu Keisyukai new start as Wajyutsu Keisyukai Senshukai]. News (in Japanese). Japan: God Bless the Ring. 2011-11-11. Retrieved 2013-07-02. 
  35. ^ a b Hirata, Shu (2008-10-19). "VALKYRIE - 11/08/2008: 'Once Again, Different Set of Rules for Girls'". United States: ADCC News. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 
  36. ^ "VALKYRIE Rules" (PDF) (Regulation) (in Japanese). Japan: Valkyrie. 2010-06-01. Archived from the original on 2001-09-01. Retrieved 2013-07-11. 

External links[edit]