Makoto Takahashi says he is going to become a UFC champion! The Japanese fighter claimed the Cage Fury flyweight title last weekend with a submission win over Diego Paiva at CFFC 114.
It was his first time fighting in the US and Takahashi clearly hopes it will not be the last. In the aftermath of his submission win over the BJJ black belt the 22 year old issued a ‘come and get me’ plea to the UFC:
My name is Makoto 'Shinryu' Takahashi.
My record is 15-1-1 and I am the only Japanese fighter who holds both the DEEP and CFFC belts.
My next stage is none other than becoming the champion of UFC
I will continue to evolve and become a champion for sure!@ufc #makototakahashi pic.twitter.com/svswfwizz5
— 神龍誠 Makoto Shinryu (@makoto0705mma) November 14, 2022
Asking for fights on social media might not be a guaranteed way to earn a UFC contract. But Takahashi is on a nine fight winning streak and his list of recent accomplishments speaks for itself.
At Deep 107 he finished Yamato Fujita with a third round ninja choke to become the promotion’s undisputed flyweight champion, having previously held the interim belt. He finished Paiva with exactly the same submission last weekend to earn a second strap.
Takahashi has also fought for Bellator and Rizin and has not lost a fight since 2018. Last weekend was his first time fighting outside of Japan:
TAKAHASHI is the @CFFCMMA flyweight champ! 🏆
[ #CFFC114 | LIVE NOW | on #UFCFIGHTPASS ] pic.twitter.com/AuujdV8FVl
— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) November 11, 2022
The UFC already has one Japanese flyweight on the roster. Tatsuro Taira has made a blistering start winning his first two fights inside the octagon and earning a $50,000 USD performance bonus for his submission of C.J Vergara at UFC Vegas 62 earlier this month.
Takahashi called out Taira in the build up to Rizin 37. The 22 year old would go on to claim a hard fought decision win over Hideo Tokoro that night.
He called for the UFC to put on a fight between him and Taira, comparing it to the kickboxing bout between Tenshin Nasukawa and Takeru. The promotion has never had two Japanese opponents face each other.
It is unlikely Takahashi will get a shot at Taira, although both men are competing in the same division and on a similar trajectory. But his record is certainly impressive enough to attract the attention of the UFC matchmakers.
Submitting a BJJ black belt at CFFC 114, which was broadcast on Fight Pass, will certainly have helped to raise Takahashi’s international profile. He is hoping it will be enough to get a call from the UFC.