Enson Inoue

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Enson Inoue
Enson Inoue at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.JPG
Born (1967-04-15) April 15, 1967 (age 51)
Honolulu, Hawaii, United States
Other namesYamato Damashii (大和魂)
ResidenceSaitama, Japan
Height5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight210 lb (95 kg; 15 st)
DivisionLight Heavyweight
StyleBujinkan, BJJ
Teacher(s)Satoru Sayama
John Lewis
RankBlack Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
4th degree black belt in Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout3
By submission9
By decision0
By knockout5
By submission1
By decision2
Notable relativesEgan Inoue, brother
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Enson Inoue (Japanese: エンセン井上, born April 15, 1967) is a Japanese-American retired mixed martial artist. He has a professional MMA record of 12-8. He is a former Shooto Heavyweight Champion. He had also previously fought in Pride Fighting Championships, one of the biggest mixed martial arts organization at the time. Inoue was featured in the documentary film Rites of Passage: The Rebirth of Combat Sports. He also appeared in the martial arts movie Redbelt.


Enson's achievements include a victory over UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture, and giving Frank Shamrock one of his toughest matches. Enson had an exhibition match in Mudo Spirit on September 16, 2007.

Enson and his brother were awarded black belts in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by John Lewis. He subsequently demoted himself to purple belt in July 2016 citing that BJJ has moved on since attaining his black belt.[citation needed] He also holds a yondan (fourth degree black belt) in Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu and was a former College Wrestler.[1] He won the Shooto Heavyweight Title against Joe Estes on October 12, 1997. Enson appeared in the 2008 martial arts film Redbelt as a cameo role.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Enson, a Japanese American from Hawaii has a stepson (Erson) and is the brother of Egan Inoue, a mixed martial artist and a two time racquetball World Champion player.[3] He was married to the sister of Ultimate Fighting Championship Bantamweight fighter Norifumi Yamamoto in which he took in and trained Norifumi in mixed martial arts after an incident with the Yakuza.[citation needed] Enson has asserted that he is "not Yakuza" but admits to doing business with members of Yakuza.[4]

Enson runs several MMA gyms located in Japan, Saipan, Palau and Guam under the name Purebred. He also has affiliated gyms located in Thailand, Canada and the USA.[5][6][7][8]

In 2011, Enson travelled to northeast Japan to directly help the earthquake and tsunami victims in areas such as Fukushima.[9]

Marijuana arrest[edit]

In October 2008, Inoue was arrested in Tokyo for marijuana possession and spent 26 days in prison before being released on November 14, 2008. The charges against him were eventually dropped.[10]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 12-8 Antz Nansen Submission (armbar) Astra - Yoshida's Farewell April 25, 2010 1 2:10 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 11-8 Tommy Sauer TKO (punches) SB 35 - SuperBrawl 35 April 16, 2004 1 4:14 Hawaii, United States
Win 11-7 Soichi Nishida Submission (choke) FFCF 1 - Fury Full Contact Fighting 1 January 10, 2004 1 1:00 Guam
Loss 10-7 Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira Technical submission (triangle choke) PRIDE 19 February 24, 2002 1 6:17 Saitama, Japan
Loss 10-6 Heath Herring TKO (knees) PRIDE 12 December 9, 2000 1 4:52 Saitama, Japan
Loss 10-5 Igor Vovchanchyn TKO (doctor stoppage) PRIDE 10 August 27, 2000 1 10:00 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 10-4 Mark Kerr Decision (unanimous) PRIDE Grand Prix 2000 - Opening Round January 30, 2000 1 15:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 10-3 Soichi Nishida Submission (rear naked choke) Pride 5 April 29, 1999 1 0:24 Nagoya, Japan
Win 9-3 Randy Couture Submission (armbar) VTJ 1998 - Vale Tudo Japan 1998 October 25, 1998 1 1:39 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 8-3 Frank Shamrock TKO (Punches) VTJ 1997 - Vale Tudo Japan 1997 November 29, 1997 2 7:17 Tokyo, Japan
Win 8-2 Joe Estes Submission (punches) Shooto - Reconquista 4 October 12, 1997 1 1:06 Tokyo, Japan Won Shooto Light Heavyweight Championship
Win 7-2 Royce Alger Technical Submission (armbar) UFC 13 May 30, 1997 1 1:36 Augusta, Georgia, United States
Win 6-2 Rei Zulu TKO (elbows) Shooto - Reconquista 2 April 6, 1997 1 0:45 Tokyo, Japan
Win 5-2 Mushtaq Abdullah Submission (punches) Shooto - Let's Get Lost October 4, 1996 1 0:38 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 4-2 Igor Zinoviev TKO (punches) VTJ 1996 - Vale Tudo Japan 1996 July 7, 1996 1 0:44 Tokyo, Japan
Loss 4-1 Joe Estes Decision (majority) Shooto - Vale Tudo Junction 3 May 7, 1996 3 8:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 4-0 Andre Mannaart TKO (punches) Shooto - Vale Tudo Junction 1 January 20, 1996 1 3:20 Tokyo, Japan
Win 3-0 Ed de Kruijf Technical Submission (armbar) Shooto - Complete Vale Tudo Access July 29, 1995 1 1:40 Japan
Win 2-0 Rene Rooze Submission (rear naked choke) VTJ 1995 - Vale Tudo Japan 1995 April 20, 1995 1 6:41 Japan
Win 1-0 Shingo Shigeta TKO (punches) Shooto - Vale Tudo Access 3 January 21, 1995 1 1:10 Tokyo, Japan

Submission grappling record[edit]

Result Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Notes
Win Tully Kulihaapai Submission (armbar) PRIDE 7 1999 1
Loss Mario Sperry Points ADCC 1999 Absolute 1999 1


  1. ^ "But Enson has trained in the Bujinkan arts with myself and Anthony Netzler now for at least 9 years. I gave him his Yondan in the Bujinkan. ""'Enson Inoue and the Bujinkan,' Kutaki no Mora". Retrieved 2010-06-21.
  2. ^ "Inoue On Red Belt MMA Movie, R-1 Training & More". mmanews.com. 2007-05-31. Archived from the original on 2008-01-31. Retrieved 2009-11-27.
  3. ^ Enson weds a three-time world wrestling champion today in Hawaii.
  4. ^ Hody Jae Huh. Up Close and Personal with Enson Inoue Part I
  5. ^ "Interview: Enson Inoue & George Sotiropoulos (Part Two)". total-mma.com. 2008-05-02. Archived from the original on 2008-05-06. Retrieved 2009-11-27.
  6. ^ "Purebred USA". purebredusa.com. Retrieved 2009-11-27.
  7. ^ "Purebred". Retrieved 2009-11-27.
  8. ^ "Purebred Canada". grizzlygym.com. 2010-05-02. Retrieved 2012-10-20.
  9. ^ "Enson Inoue Discusses Charity Work". mmafighting.com. 2011-11-04. Retrieved 2011-04-15.
  10. ^ http://mmajunkie.com/2008/11/mma-pioneer-enson-inoue-a-new-man-after-26-days-in-prison

External links[edit]