4. Gabi Garcia vs. Yumiko Hotta
Japan is infamous for putting on freak show MMA fights over the years. But they managed to outdo themselves when they booked 49-year-old pro-wrestler Yumiko Hotta to fight Gabi Garcia at Rizin 4 on short notice.
Even casting aside the age difference, the stats differential was still alarming. Former BJJ champion Garcia stood 6′ 2″ tall and cut weight just to make 209 lbs. Hotta was 5′ 6″, 171 lbs and hadn’t won an MMA fight in well over two decades. Her full 5-4 record consisted mainly of worked fights against other pro-wrestlers.
The fight was every bit as absurd as you might expect. Hotta didn’t appear to have got the memo that this was actually a real MMA bout as she began by running to each side of the ring and bouncing off the ropes pro-wrestling style. On her way to start the second lap of this, Garcia reached an enormous arm out and stopped her in her tracks. Hotta retreated and threw a harmless leg kick that looked like it had taken all her strength to co-ordinate. She then ate a knee to the face that surely made everyone watching feel a sudden sense of shame and urge to phone their grandma and tell them they loved them.
22 seconds into the fight and already limping – presumably from the exertion of running around the ring – Hotta was now like a deer in the headlights. Garcia ruthlessly landed a knee to the body and then mauling punches to send her to the canvas and “win” by TKO after just 41 seconds. Frankly, no one, from the fighters to the promoters and the fans went away feeling like a winner here.