Wanderlei Silva is now set to return to Japan. And it will be in as crazy a fashion as only Japan could make it.
RIZIN FF, the combat sports promotion led by former PRIDE FC head Nobuyuki Sakakibara, announced during a press conference, the signing of all-time great Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva (35-12-1, 1 NC) to a multi-year promotional contract, as well as the first two bouts, one of which will feature Silva, for its second live event that will take place at the 10,000 capacity Nippon Gaishi Hall in Nagoya, Japan on Sunday, April 17.
Silva, the former PRIDE middleweight champion and 2003 PRIDE Grand Prix middleweight champion, will team up with a fighter to be determined, in a special grappling “tag match,” the rules for which will be announced soon, and battle a duo consisting of another legend, Kazushi Sakuraba, (26-17-1, 2 NC) and Hideo Tokoro (33-28-2).
Following the April contest, Silva, who held several records under the PRIDE banner, including longest win streak and most KO’s, will compete under MMA rules in future RIZIN FF events.
While Silva is currently serving a suspension handed down to him by the Nevada State Athletic Commission until May 2017, he could still legally compete in Japan as they are out of the state’s jurisdiction.