Pride Grand Prix 2000 Opening Round
|Pride Grand Prix 2000 Opening Round|
|Promotion||Pride Fighting Championships|
|Date||January 30, 2000|
The Pride Grand Prix 2000 Opening Round was a mixed martial arts event held by the Pride Fighting Championships. It took place at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan on January 30, 2000. The event began the Pride Openweight tournament of 2000.
Frank Shamrock: The then-semi-retired UFC middleweight champion was negotiating a fight with Kazushi Sakuraba when he was offered a slot in the tournament. “I was most into fighting Sakuraba,” he said, “and thought they were just using him as a carrot for the tourney, which would hold no Sakuraba at the end.”
Tom Erikson: The hulking freestyle wrestler had perpetual trouble getting bouts due to a smothering fighting style; allegedly, some fighters had it guaranteed in their contracts they would never have to face the 6-foot-3, 285-pound fighter. Erikson was not invited to the Grand Prix, a slight he attributes to the possible influence of other grapplers in the fold.
Randy Couture: He was offered a Pride contract but opted to re-sign with the UFC instead. He defeated Kevin Randleman to earn his second heavyweight title in November 2000.
Kevin Randleman: He was announced as Sakuraba’s opening round opponent by the promotion, but his status as the UFC’s champion prohibited his participation; Randleman claims no knowledge of the deal.
Allan Goes: Was announced as Hans Nijman’s original opponent but has no recollection of being invited; Kazuyuki Fujita fought Nijman instead.
Naoya Ogawa: Nobuhiko Takada’s original opponent, he was unable to come to terms with the promotion for his participation despite being present at an early news conference to give Takada flowers for his “funeral.”
Tra Telligman and Carlos Barreto: Both were to be involved in a reserve match for the opening round; the bout was cancelled when Barreto suffered an injury.
Wallid Ismail: He floated the idea of facing Royce Gracie in an opening-round rematch of their 1998 grappling match in Brazil. (Gracie lost via choke.) The promotion opted for Takada instead.
Tskhadaze Zaouri: A former professional arm wrestler, Zaouri was slated to face Gary Goodridge in the opening round; he was unable to schedule a travel Visa in time.
John McCarthy: He was approached by Pride to officiate the GP bouts; SEG, the UFC’s then-current owner, resolved their contractual issues with McCarthy and he remained with the U.S. promotion.
|Openweight Opening Round|
|Openweight||Royce Gracie||def.||Nobuhiko Takada||Decision (Unanimous)||1||15:00|
|Openweight||Mark Kerr||def.||Enson Inoue||Decision (Unanimous)||1||15:00|
|Openweight||Igor Vovchanchyn||def.||Alexander Otsuka||Decision (Unanimous)||1||15:00|
|Openweight||Mark Coleman||def.||Masaaki Satake||submission (neck crank)||1||1:14|
|Openweight||Kazushi Sakuraba||def.||Guy Mezger||TKO (retirement)||1||15:00||[a]|
|Openweight||Kazuyuki Fujita||def.||Hans Nijman||submission (scarf hold)||1||2:48|
|Openweight||Akira Shoji||def.||Ebenezer Fontes Braga||Decision (Unanimous)||1||15:00|
|Openweight||Gary Goodridge||def.||Osamu Kawakara||submission (forearm choke)||1||0:51|
|Openweight||Wanderlei Silva||def.||Bob Schrijber||submission (rear-naked choke)||1||2:42|
- Mezger forfeited the fight by leaving the ring after the bout was declared a draw and sent to an overtime round.
Pride 2000 Grand Prix Bracket
- Pride Grand Prix 2000 Finals
- Pride FC
- List of Pride FC champions
- List of Pride FC events
- 2000 in Pride FC