|Born||December 19, 1986|
Ibaraki, Osaka, Japan
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||240 lb (109 kg; 17 st 2 lb)|
|Division||Light Heavyweight |
|Reach||74 in (188 cm)|
|Style||Judo, Brazilian jiu-jitsu|
|Fighting out of||Zagreb, Croatia|
|Team||Cro Cop Squad Gym |
Reign Training Center
i Dash (2009–2010)
|Rank||6th dan black belt in Judo|
Black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu
|Years active||2004–2009 (Judo)|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
|2008 Beijing||+100 kg|
|World Championships Teams|
|2007 Beijing||+100 kg|
|2006 Doha||-100 kg|
|World U20 Championship|
|2004 Budapest||-100 kg|
|Asian U20 Championship|
|2004 Doha||-100 kg|
Ishii won the gold medal in Olympic Judo at the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics, a silver medal at the 2006 Asian Games and two All-Japan Judo Championships representing Japan. Ishii made his professional MMA debut at Dynamite!! 2009 losing to fellow Judoka gold medalist Hidehiko Yoshida by unanimous decision, but currently holds a record of 24-12-1. Ishii is currently under contract with Professional Fighters League. A professional mixed martial artist since 2009, Ishii has also competed for Rizin Fighting Federation and Bellator, and is the current HEAT Heavyweight Champion and SBC Heavyweight Champion.
Ishii started Judo under the guidance of his father when he was in fifth grade of elementary school. He attended Kokushikan High School and then Kokushikan University in the Department of Physical Education.
Ishii won a gold medal at the Junior World Championships on 16 October 2004 in Budapest, Hungary. On 2 December 2006 he won a silver medal at the −100 kg category of the 2006 Asian Games. On April 29, 2006 and 2008, he won the All-Japan Judo Championships in Tokyo, Japan. With him the Japanese team won the World Judo team competition on 17 November 2007 in Beijing, China, this time in the +100 kg division.
On August 15, 2008 he won a gold medal at the +100 kg category of the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics.
On 30 April 2011 Ishii returned to Judo to compete in the United States Championship in the open division; he won all the matches, securing the gold medal.
Mixed martial arts career
After winning the gold medal, Ishii expressed his wishes to apply his talents in the sport of mixed martial arts (MMA) to the dismay of the Japanese Judo Federation. Ishii originally confirmed that he signed a contract with Japanese MMA promotion Fighting and Entertainment Group (FEG) and was rumored to debut in early 2009 in their fight series, DREAM.
Japanese newspaper Sports Nippon then reported that Ishii would make his ring debut on December 31, 2009 at the annual K-1 Premium Dynamite!! event at the Saitama Super Arena. However, Ishii announced that he rejected FEG's offer, and was planning to pursue his MMA career in the US' Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). He headed to Florida where he trained with one of MMA's top camps American Top Team.
On June 1, 2009, Ishii announced he would join Japanese MMA organization World Victory Road. He officially signed with the organization at a public signing event on June 4, 2009. On September 14, 2009, it was announced that Ishii would make his MMA debut against fellow Olympian judo gold medalist Hidehiko Yoshida. Although the fight was originally to take place at World Victory Road's New Year show on December 31, when that event was cancelled, the fight was moved to DREAM's Dynamite!! 2009 card on New Year's Eve as a co-promoted show. Ishii, who was a large favorite in the fight, was dominated in the first round by the more-experienced Yoshida, taking many strikes including a right overhand that staggered the newcomer, along with a series of knees and uppercuts from the clinch. Ishii, however, came back with a more competitive second round, but took a point deduction after illegally kneeing Yoshida in the groin. Ishii continued to find his range in the third round with punches, but ultimately lost via unanimous decision.
For his second fight, Ishii faced New Zealand heavyweight kickboxing champion Tafa "Thumper" Misipati on May 15, 2010 in Auckland, New Zealand. The fight was the main event at the ETK production X-plosion: New Zealand vs. Japan. Ishii won via submission (armbar) in the first round.
In June 2010, Ishii caused controversy during an MMA exhibition match on the undercard of X-1 World Events: Nations Collide in Hawaii. After knocking down his opponent Myles Tynanes at the end of the first-round, Ishii failed to stop punching his downed foe despite the referee's attempts to halt the action. He was subsequently disqualified for his actions.
Ishii's next MMA fight was supposed to be against Antz Nansen at the K-1 World MAX 2010. However, his opponent was changed to Katsuyori Shibata at the last minute. Ishii won via Kimura in the first round.
Ishii continued to train at Black House in Brazil with notable fighters such as Lyoto Machida and Anderson Silva. Prior to Silva's fight with Chael Sonnen Ishii hurt Silva's ribs. Since then he has trained at Mark Muñoz's gym Reign MMA, along with Mayhem Miller, Fabrício Werdum and other notable fighters.
Ishii was scheduled to make his North America debut for Strikeforce at Strikeforce Challengers 15 against Scott Lighty, but a visa issue stemming from the recent earthquake and tsunami left him unable to leave Japan. Lorenz Larkin took his place in the fight.
In April 2011, it was reported that Ishii would retire from MMA and return to judo. Surprisingly, he said that he plans to earn American citizenship and represent the US at the 2016 Summer Olympics. However, he apparently decided against retiring from MMA as he went on to face former WEC Middleweight Champion Paulo Filho at Amazon Forest Combat 1 on September 14, 2011 in his light heavyweight debut. The fight ended in a controversial draw, with journalists as well as the crowd agreeing that Ishii had won all three rounds.
After taking a year off from fighting to train following the Emelianenko loss, Ishii signed an exclusive multi fight deal with IGF in Japan. Here he has secured 6 victories in less than a year against former UFC Heavyweight Champion Tim Sylvia, UFC veterans Sean McCorkle, Kerry Schall, Pedro Rizzo and most recently against Jeff Monson.
On August 23 at IGF 2, Despite being a heavy favorite due to his years and judo experience Ishii was defeated by UFC, Pride and K-1 veteran Mirko Cro Cop via doctor stoppage, losing the IGF Championship in the process.
Ishii was expected to face PRIDE and Strikeforce veteran Sergei Kharitonov at M-1 Challenge 53: Battle in the Celestial Empire on November 11, 2014. However, Ishii withdrew from the fight due to injury.
Ishii faced Mirko Cro Cop in a rematch at December 31, 2014 for the IGF Championship. Early reports had the rematch cancelled due to a rib injury sustained by Ishii. However, in December 2014, it was reported that Ishii would be able to heal up in time to fight Cro Cop, and the rematch was official once again. Ishii lost the fight via TKO at the end of the second round.
In his debut for the Rizin promotion, Ishii faced Jiří Procházka on December 29, 2015 at Rizin Fighting Federation World (8-men) Tournament. He lost the fight via knockout early in the first round. However there was some speculation about a possible fight fix, as a head kick thrown by Procházka appeared to be blocked by Ishii, but Ishii collapsed anyway and was finished off shortly after.
Ishii challenged Cally Gibrainn de Oliveira for the HEAT Heavyweight Championship at HEAT 44 on March 2, 2019. He claimed the title via second-round submission.
Professional Fighters League
Return to Rizin
As his first HEAT title defense, Ishii faced Cleber Souza at HEAT 46 on January 19, 2020. He retained the title via first-round submission.
Ishii next faced Stuart Austin for the inaugural EMC Heavyweight Championship at EMC 5 on September 5, 2020. Ishii lost a controversial unanimous decision, to which his team decided to appeal.
Ishii faced Pietro Cappelli at EMC 7. He won the fight by a first-round submission.
Championships and accomplishments
Professional mixed martial arts
- Serbian Battle Championship
- SBC Heavyweight Championship (One time; current)
- One successful title defense
- SBC Heavyweight Championship (One time; current)
- Inoki Genome Federation
- HEAT Heavyweight Championship (One time; current)
- One successful title defense
- HEAT Heavyweight Championship (One time; current)
Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|37 matches||24 wins||12 losses|
|Win||24–12–1||Pietro Cappelli||Submission (north-south choke)||EMC 7||July 3, 2021||1||2:41||Ratingen, Germany|
|Loss||23–12–1||Stuart Austin||Decision (unanimous)||EMC 5||September 5, 2020||3||5:00||Dusseldorf, Germany||For vacant EMC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||23–11–1||Cleber Souza||Submission (armlock)||HEAT 46||January 19, 2020||1||3:24||Tokyo, Japan||Defended the HEAT Heavyweight Championship.|
|Loss||22–11–1||Jake Heun||TKO (punches)||Rizin 20||December 31, 2019||1||1:18||Saitama, Japan|
|Loss||22–10–1||Denis Goltsov||Decision (majority)||PFL 9||October 31, 2019||2||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||2019 PFL Heavyweight Quarterfinal bout.|
|Loss||22–9–1||Jared Rosholt||Decision (unanimous)||PFL 6||August 8, 2019||3||5:00||Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States|
|Win||22–8–1||Zeke Tuinei Wily||Decision (split)||PFL 3||June 6, 2019||3||5:00||New York, United States|
|Win||21–8–1||Fernando Rodrigues Jr.||Decision (split)||KSW 47: The X-Warriors||March 23, 2019||3||5:00||Łódź, Poland|
|Win||20–8–1||Cally Gibrainn de Oliveira||Submission (armlock)||HEAT 44||March 2, 2019||2||3:54||Nagoya, Japan||Won the HEAT Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||19–8–1||Rodrigo Carlos||TKO (punches)||Serbian Battle Championship 20||February 16, 2019||1||1:42||Sombor, Serbia||Defended the SBC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||18–8–1||Tony Lopez||Submission (leg scissor choke)||Serbian Battle Championship 19||December 1, 2018||1||4:42||Novi Sad, Serbia||Won the vacant SBC Heavyweight Championship.|
|Win||17–8–1||Rokas Stambrauskas||Submission (leg scissor choke)||German MMMA Championship 17||October 13, 2018||1||4:43||Düsseldorf, Germany|
|Win||16–8–1||Björn Schmiedeberg||Submission (kimura)||Final Fight Championship 30||October 21, 2017||1||2:36||Linz, Austria|
|Loss||15–8–1||Ivan Shtyrkov||TKO (punches)||RCC Boxing Promotions: Russia vs Japan||July 9, 2017||2||3:43||Yekaterinburg, Russia|
|Win||15–7–1||Heath Herring||Decision (unanimous)||Rizin 2017 in Yokohama: Sakura||April 16, 2017||2||5:00||Yokohama, Japan|
|Loss||14–7–1||Muhammed Lawal||Decision (unanimous)||Bellator 169||December 16, 2016||3||5:00||Dublin, Ireland|
|Loss||14–6–1||Quinton Jackson||Decision (split)||Bellator 157: Dynamite 2||June 24, 2016||3||5:00||St. Louis, Missouri, United States||Catchweight (225 lbs) bout.|
|Loss||14–5–1||Jiří Procházka||KO (head kick and knees)||Rizin World Grand Prix 2015: Part 1 - Saraba||December 29, 2015||1||1:36||Saitama, Japan||2015 Rizin Heavyweight Tournament Quarterfinals.|
|Win||14–4–1||Will Penn||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Inoki Genome Fight 4||August 29, 2015||1||3:07||Tokyo, Japan|
|Win||13–4–1||Nick Rossborough||Submission (kimura)||Inoki Genome Fight 3||April 11, 2015||1||4:22||Tokyo, Japan|
|Loss||12–4–1||Mirko Cro Cop||TKO (head kick and punches)||Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2014||December 31, 2014||2||5:00||Tokyo, Japan||For the IGF Championship.|
|Loss||12–3–1||Mirko Cro Cop||TKO (doctor stoppage)||Inoki Genome Fight 2||August 23, 2014||2||2:37||Tokyo, Japan||Lost the IGF Championship.|
|Win||12–2–1||Philip De Fries||Decision (unanimous)||Inoki Genome Fight 1||April 5, 2014||2||5:00||Tokyo, Japan||Non-title bout.|
|Win||11–2–1||Kazuyuki Fujita||Decision (unanimous)||Inoki Bom-Ba-Ye 2013||December 31, 2013||3||5:00||Tokyo, Japan||Won the IGF Championship.|
|Win||10–2–1||Jeff Monson||Decision (majority)||M-1 Challenge 42||October 20, 2013||3||5:00||St. Petersburg, Russia|
|Win||9–2–1||Clayton Jones||TKO (punches)||IGF: GENOME 27||July 20, 2013||1||0:35||Osaka, Japan|
|Win||8–2–1||Pedro Rizzo||Decision (unanimous)||IGF: GENOME 26||May 26, 2013||3||5:00||Tokyo, Japan|
|Win||7–2–1||Kerry Schall||Submission (americana)||IGF: GENOME 25||March 20, 2013||1||2:43||Fukuoka, Japan|
|Win||6–2–1||Sean McCorkle||Submission (kimura)||IGF: GENOME 24||February 23, 2013||1||2:41||Tokyo, Japan|
|Win||5–2–1||Tim Sylvia||Decision (unanimous)||Inoki-Bom-Ba-Ye 2012||December 31, 2012||3||5:00||Tokyo, Japan|
|Loss||4–2–1||Fedor Emelianenko||KO (punches)||Fight For Japan: Genki Desu Ka Omisoka 2011||December 31, 2011||1||2:29||Saitama, Japan||Return to heavyweight.|
|Draw||4–1–1||Paulo Filho||Draw||Amazon Forest Combat 1||September 14, 2011||3||5:00||Manaus, Brazil||Light heavyweight debut.|
|Win||4–1||Jérôme Le Banner||Decision (unanimous)||Dynamite!! 2010||December 31, 2010||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan|
|Win||3–1||Katsuyori Shibata||Submission (kimura)||K-1 World MAX 2010 World Championship Tournament Final||November 8, 2010||1||3:30||Tokyo, Japan|
|Win||2–1||Ikuhisa Minowa||Decision (unanimous)||Dream 16||September 25, 2010||2||5:00||Nagoya, Japan|
|Win||1–1||Tafa Misipati||Submission (armbar)||X-plosion: New Zealand vs. Japan||May 15, 2010||1||2:42||Auckland, New Zealand|
|Loss||0–1||Hidehiko Yoshida||Decision (unanimous)||Dynamite!! The Power of Courage 2009||December 31, 2009||3||5:00||Saitama, Japan|
Submission grappling record
|5 Matches, 1 Win, 1 Losses, 3 Draws|
|Loss||1–1–3||Daniel Strauss||Points||Polaris 8||December 9, 2018||Superfight||Cardiff|
|Win||1–0–3||Frank Mir||DQ||Quintet 3||October 5, 2018||Superfight||Las Vegas, NV|
|Draw||0–0–3||Geo Martinez||Draw||Quintet 2||July 15, 2018||Absolute||Tokyo|
|Draw||0–0–2||Marcos de Souza||Draw||Quintet||April 11, 2018||Absolute||Tokyo|
|Draw||0–0–1||Vladimir Matyushenko||Draw||Metamoris 7||July 17, 2016||Superfight||Los Angeles, CA|
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- (in Japanese) 石井慧離婚 女子大生とたったの９カ月. March 29, 2011
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