The Dream lightweight grand prix final that never was, finally will be. Eddie Alvarez was initially slated to take on Shinya Aoki at Dream.5 to become the organization’s first-ever lightweight champion. Unfortunately, Alvarez was forced to pull out due to a facial injury he suffered in his semifinal win over Tatsuya Kawajiri earlier that evening. Dream made the official announcement that the two exciting 160-pounders will be ringing in the New Year against each other at K-1 Dynamite!! 2008.
Aoki had defeated MMA veteran Caol Uno in the semifinals, however went on to lose in the finals against Joachim Hansen, Alvarez’ replacement.
Two weeks ago, Alvarez announced that he would be competing for the little known Extreme Challenge on January 23rd. The Midwest-based MMA organization is owned and operated by his promoter, Monte Cox. It is believed that if healthy, Alvarez is committed to fighting on that card.
K-1 Dynamite!! 2008 is a co-promoted event between Dream and K-1. The December 31st card will be held at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, and feature both MMA bouts and K-1 kickboxing bouts.
Here are the fighters Rumored to be competing at the event:
Hiroya vs. Shimada Shota
Kusakabe Ryuya vs. Urabe Koya
Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Kozo Takeda
Gegard Mousasi vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri
Mark Hunt vs. Jerome Le Banner
Sergei Kharitonov vs. Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic
Kazushi Sakuraba vs. Kiyoshi Tamura
Shinya Aoki vs. Eddie Alvarez
Gesias “JZ” Calvancante vs. Joachim Hansen (Dream Lightweight Champion)