Ulka Sasaki

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Yuta Sasaki
Born (1989-10-07) October 7, 1989 (age 28)
Numazu, Shizuoka, Japan
Other names Ulka / Uruka
Nationality Japanese
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight 126 lb (57 kg; 9.0 st)
Division Featherweight
Bantamweight
Flyweight
Reach 71 in (180 cm)[1]
Fighting out of Garden City, New York, USA
Team Longo and Weidman MMA
Years active 2010–present
Mixed martial arts record
Total 28
Wins 21
By knockout 2
By submission 12
By decision 7
Losses 5
By knockout 1
By submission 2
By decision 2
Draws 2
Other information
Notable school(s) Hiryū High School
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Yuta "Ulka" Sasaki (佐々木 佑太, Sasaki Yūta, born October 7, 1989) is a Japanese mixed martial artist who currently competes in the Flyweight of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. A professional competitor since 2010, he formerly competed for Shooto, DEEP, and Vale Tudo Japan. He is the former Shooto Pacific Rim (132 lbs) Champion. As of 26 July 2018, he is the #15 flyweight in official UFC rankings.[2]

Background[edit]

Born and raised in Shizuoka, Sasaki was a talented wrestler and also began training in Brazilian jiu-jitsu from a young age. He wrestled for three seasons at Hiryu High School, finishing in the top 16 at the All-Japan High School Greco-Roman Wrestling Championships, and in 2009 Sasaki won the All-Japan Combat Wrestling Open Championships for the under 66 kg division. That same year, he also finished second at the All-Japan Amateur Shooto Championships. Later in 2013, Sasaki won the ADCC Japan Trial for the under 66 kg division.[3]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Shooto[edit]

Sasaki started his professional career in 2010. He fought mainly for Shooto, but also fought for DEEP and GCM early in his career.

Sasaki faced Yo Saito on December 18, 2010, at Shooto: The Rookie Tournament 2010 Final. He defeated Saito via unanimous decision after two rounds and became the 2010 Shooto 143-pound rookie champion.[4]

Sasaki faced Tetsu Suzuki on January 20, 2013, at Shooto: 1st Round 2013 for the Shooto Pacific Rim 132-pound title. He won via unanimous decision and became the new champion.[5]

Sasaki defended his title on July 27, 2013, at Shooto: 3rd Round 2013 against Kenji Yamamoto. He won via knockout at 11 seconds in the first round and retained the title. Shortly after the bout, Sasaki relinquished his title in order to be able to fight for Shooto's world title.[6]

Sasaki faced current ZST 132 lb champion Keisuke Fujiwara[7] on January 13, 2014, at Shooto: 1st Round 2014. He won via submission due to a rear-naked choke in the first round.[8]

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

In July 2014, it was announced that Sasaki had signed with the UFC. He made his debut against Roland Delorme at UFC Fight Night 48 on August 23, 2014.[9] Sasaki won via submission in the first round. The win also earned Sasaki his first Performance of the Night bonus award.[10]

Sasaki faced Leandro Issa on December 20, 2014, at UFC Fight Night 58.[11] He lost the fight by submission in the second round.

Sasaki faced Taylor Lapilus on June 20, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 69.[12] He lost the fight via TKO in the second round.[13]

Sasaki faced Willie Gates May 8, 2016, at UFC Fight Night 87.[14] He won the fight via submission in the second round.[15]

Sasaki was expected to face Matheus Nicolau on November 19, 2016, at UFC Fight Night 100.[16] However, on November 3, Nicolau was pulled from the bout after USADA revealed a potential anti-doping violation from a sample taken October 13.[17]

Sasaki next faced Wilson Reis on February 11, 2017, at UFC 208.[18] He lost the fight by unanimous decision.[19]

Sasaki faced Justin Scoggins on June 17, 2017 at UFC Fight Night: Holm vs. Correia.[20] Sasaki suffered almost two rounds of damage but managed to sink his arm around Scoggins' neck and submitted him via a rear-naked choke in the second round to win the fight.[21] This fight won Sasaki his second Performance of the Night bonus award.[22]

Sasaki faced Jussier Formiga on September 23, 2017 at UFC Fight Night: Saint Preux vs. Okami.[23] He lost the fight via submission in the first round.[24]

Sasaki was scheduled to face Magomed Bibulatov on April 21, 2018 at UFC Fight Night 128.[25] However, Bibulatov was removed from the card due to back injury,[26] and the bout was cancelled.[27]

Sasaki faced Jenel Lausa on June 23, 2018 at UFC Fight Night 132.[28] He won the fight in round two via a rear-naked choke submission.[29]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts[edit]

Grappling[edit]

  • Abu Dhabi Combat Club
    • 2013 ADCC Asia trials 1st place – under 66 kg[32]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 21–5–2 Jenel Lausa Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Cowboy vs. Edwards June 23, 2018 2 4:04 Kallang, Singapore
Loss 20–5–2 Jussier Formiga Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Saint Preux vs. Okami September 23, 2017 1 4:30 Saitama, Japan
Win 20–4–2 Justin Scoggins Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Holm vs. Correia June 17, 2017 2 3:19 Kallang, Singapore Performance of the Night.
Loss 19–4–2 Wilson Reis Decision (unanimous) UFC 208 February 11, 2017 3 5:00 Brooklyn, New York, United States
Win 19–3–2 Willie Gates Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Overeem vs. Arlovski May 8, 2016 2 2:30 Rotterdam, Netherlands Flyweight debut.
Loss 18–3–2 Taylor Lapilus TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Jedrzejczyk vs. Penne June 20, 2015 2 1:26 Berlin, Germany
Loss 18–2–2 Leandro Issa Submission (neck crank) UFC Fight Night: Machida vs. Dollaway December 20, 2014 2 4:13 Barueri, Brazil
Win 18–1–2 Roland Delorme Submission (rear-naked choke) UFC Fight Night: Bisping vs. Le August 23, 2014 1 1:06 Macau, SAR, China Performance of the Night.
Win 17–1–2 Hong Jung-Gi KO (punches) DEEP: Fujisan Festival May 25, 2014 1 0:38 Fuji, Japan
Win 16–1–2 Teruto Ishihara Technical Submission (rear-naked choke) Vale Tudo Japan 4th February 23, 2014 2 1:46 Tokyo, Japan
Win 15–1–2 Keisuke Fujiwara Submission (rear-naked choke) Shooto: 1st Round 2014 January 13, 2014 1 4:35 Tokyo, Japan
Win 14–1–2 Geun Do Park Submission (rear-naked choke) Vale Tudo Japan 3rd October 5, 2013 1 1:36 Ota, Japan
Win 13–1–2 Kenji Yamamoto KO (punch) Shooto: 3rd Round 2013 July 27, 2013 1 0:11 Tokyo, Japan Defended the Shooto Pacific Rim 132 lbs Championship.
Win 12–1–2 Kota Onojima Decision (majority) Shooto: Gig Tokyo 14 April 21, 2013 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan Non-title bout.[33]
Win 11–1–2 Tetsu Suzuki Decision (unanimous) Shooto: 1st Round 2013 January 20, 2013 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan Won the Shooto Pacific Rim 132 lbs Championship.
Draw 10–1–2 Manabu Inoue Draw (majority) Shooto: 12th Round November 11, 2012 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 10–1–1 Teruyuki Matsumoto Submission (guillotine choke) Shooto: Gig Tokyo 10 June 30, 2012 1 0:42 Tokyo, Japan Featherweight bout.
Win 9–1–1 Kazuhiro Ito Submission (rear-naked choke) Shooto: Gig Tokyo 9 April 14, 2012 2 3:34 Tokyo, Japan Bantamweight debut.
Win 8–1–1 Satoshi Watanabe Decision (unanimous) DEEP: Fujisan Festival January 29, 2012 2 5:00 Fuji, Japan
Loss 7–1–1 Guy Delumeau Decision (unanimous) Shooto: Shootor's Legacy 4 September 23, 2011 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 7–0–1 Kosuke Kindaichi Decision (majority) Shooto: Shootor's Legacy 3 July 18, 2011 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 6–0–1 Yoshifumi Nakamura Decision (majority) Shooto: Shootor's Legacy 2 April 1, 2011 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Draw 5–0–1 Yusuke Kagiyama Draw DEEP: Shizuoka Impact 2011 February 6, 2011 2 5:00 Shizuoka, Japan
Win 5–0 Yo Saito Decision (unanimous) Shooto: The Rookie Tournament 2010 Final December 18, 2010 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan Won the 2010 Shooto Rookie (143 lbs) Championship.
Win 4–0 Motohiro Takenawa Decision (unanimous) Shooto: Kitazawa Shooto Vol. 4 September 17, 2010 2 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 3–0 Keiji Sakuta Submission (rear-naked choke) GCM: Cage Force Preliminary Festival 1 July 25, 2010 3 1:03 Tokyo, Japan
Win 2–0 Shinji Maeguchi Submission (rear-naked choke) Shooto: Gig Central 20 June 13, 2010 2 1:24 Nagoya, Japan
Win 1–0 Atsushi Masukura Submission (rear-naked choke) GCM: Cage Force 16 April 11, 2010 1 0:30 Tokyo, Japan Featherweight debut.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Fight Card - UFC Fight Night Jedrzejczyk vs. Penne". UFC.com. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Fighter Rankings | UFC ®". UFC. Retrieved 2018-07-27. 
  3. ^ http://www.ufc.com/fighter/Yuta-Sasaki?id=
  4. ^ Tony Loiseleur (December 18, 2010). "Shooto rookie kings crowned; 'Sarumaru' steals the show". Sherdog.com. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  5. ^ Shu Hirata (January 22, 2013). "Shooto: "Uruka" Sasaki captures Pacific Rim title". Adcombat.com. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  6. ^ Dean Marchand (July 27, 2013). "Shooto '3rd round' results: 'Uruka' scores 11-second KO, Miki-Saruta ends in draw after 5". Sherdog.com. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  7. ^ Shu Hirata (December 21, 2013). "Shooto: "Ulka" Sasaki to take on ZST champ Fujiwara". Adcombat.com. Retrieved January 12, 2014. 
  8. ^ Lee Li (January 13, 2014). "Shooto 1st Round 2014 results and updates on VTJ 4, Shooto 2nd Round". MMA-in-Asia.com. Retrieved January 29, 2014. 
  9. ^ Anton Tabuena (July 20, 2014). "UFC signs top Japanese prospect Yuta Sasaki, set to debut against Roland Delorme in Macau". bloodyelbow.com. Retrieved July 31, 2014. 
  10. ^ Staff (2014-08-23). "UFC Fight Night 48 bonuses: No $50,000 'Fight of the Night' awards". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2014-08-23. 
  11. ^ Wesley De Souza (2014-10-10). "Evolve MMA's Leandro Issa vs Yuta Sasaki signed for UFC Fight Night 58". thefightnation.com. Retrieved 2014-10-10. 
  12. ^ Staff (2015-05-13). "UFC Fight Night 69 gets one more: Taylor Lapilus vs. Yuta Sasaki set for Berlin". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2015-05-13. 
  13. ^ Ban Fowlkes (2015-06-20). "UFC Fight Night 69 results: Taylor Lapilus upsets Yuta Sasaki via second-round TKO". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2015-06-20. 
  14. ^ Staff (2016-04-26). "With Paddy Holohan's retirement, Willie Gates gets new UFC Fight Night 87 opponent". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-04-26. 
  15. ^ Matt Erickson (2016-05-08). "UFC Fight Night 87 results: Ulka Sasaki taps out Willie Gates in flyweight debut". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-05-08. 
  16. ^ Staff (2016-09-25). "Six additional bouts announced for UFC Fight Night 100 on Nov. 19 in Sao Paulo". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2015-09-25. 
  17. ^ Staff (2016-11-03). "Flyweight Matheus Nicolau pulled from UFC Fight Night 100 for potential anti-doping violation". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2016-11-03. 
  18. ^ Guilherme Cruz (2016-10-25). "Wilson Reis vs. Ulka Sasaki slated for UFC 208". mmafighting.com. Retrieved November 26, 2016. 
  19. ^ Steven Marrocco (2017-02-11). "UFC 208 results: Wilson Reis outgrapples Ulka Sasaki for unanimous decision". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  20. ^ Staff (2017-03-28). "UFC Fight Night 111 takes shape in Singapore". mmajunkie.com. Retrieved 2017-03-28. 
  21. ^ "UFC Fight Night 111 results: Justin Scoggins dazzles early, but Ulka Sasaki gets tap". MMAjunkie. 2017-06-17. Retrieved 2017-06-17. 
  22. ^ "UFC Fight Night 111 bonuses: You know Holly Holm's sick kick was worth $50,000". MMAjunkie. 2017-06-17. Retrieved 2017-06-18. 
  23. ^ Marcel Dorff. "UFC adds two Flyweight fights for UFC Japan" (in Dutch). mmadna.nl. Retrieved 2017-07-14. 
  24. ^ "UFC Japan results and highlights: Saki wins debut by KO, Kim stops Gomi, Formiga taps Sasaki". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 2017-09-23. 
  25. ^ DNA, MMA. "Magomed Bibulatov keert terug in de Octagon tegen Ulka Sasaki in April". mmadna.nl. Retrieved 2018-02-01. 
  26. ^ "Magomed Bibulatov out of UFC Atlantic City bout vs. Ulka Sasaki". MMAjunkie. 2018-04-20. Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  27. ^ "UFC Fight Night 128 Bout Canceled Because of Injury | MMAWeekly.com". www.mmaweekly.com. Retrieved 2018-04-20. 
  28. ^ Marcel Dorff (2018-05-08). "New additions for the UFC Singapore card in June". mmadna.nl. Retrieved 2018-05-08.  (in Dutch)
  29. ^ "UFC Fight Night 132 results: Ulka Sasaki taps Jenel Lausa, calls out Sergio Pettis". MMAjunkie. 2018-06-23. Retrieved 2018-06-23. 
  30. ^ "UFC Fight Night 48: Bisping, Woodley get bonuses". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2017-06-18. 
  31. ^ "UFC Fight Night 111 bonuses: You know Holly Holm's sick kick was worth $50,000". MMAjunkie. 2017-06-17. Retrieved 2017-06-18. 
  32. ^ Shu Hirata (March 24, 2013). "ADCC Asia trial: "Kid" Yamamoto's sister and a four-time world wrestling champ Seiko Yamamoto wins under 60 kg division". Adcombat.com. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  33. ^ Shu Hirata (May 16, 2013). "Shooto: what's next for Pacific Rim champ "Uruka"?". Adcombat.com. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 

External links[edit]