Yoshihiro Akiyama is starring in a Korean reality TV show and everyone is talking about it. From the country that gave us Squid Game comes a similar looking show that features actual contestants instead of actors.

Unlike Squid Games no-one actually dies, or at least we hope they don’t. But at one stage Akiyama appears to accept a challenge to engage in a bare knuckle MMA fight with a fellow contestant:

Mixed heritage

Akiyama is coming off a win over Shinya Aoki. That result really got he 47 year old’s career back on track and he was subsequently offered a fight with former lightweight champion Eduard Folayang.

Akiyama turned that fight down and we now know why. It seems the K-1 and UFC veteran has been busy filming this show in Korea, entitled Physical: 100, which is being broadcast on Netflix now.

Akiyama, or  Choo Sung-Hoon as he is known in Korea, was born in Japan to a family of Korean immigrants. He speaks both languages fluently and has a large fanbase in both countries.

Mixed backgrounds

The fighter who challenges Akiyama to an MMA fight is Dong Guk Shin who boasts a record of 3-5. He has lost his last four fights and would have no chance of getting matched with such a legendary opponent in a regular competition.

He is not the only mixed martial artist on the show. Sang Uk Kim who holds a more respectable sounding 7-2 record and is the former AFC interim welterweight champion is also one of the contestants.

Park Hyung Geunm who holds a 5-4 record, is also one of the contestants. The rest of the cast seems to be made up of a mixture of bodybuilders, wrestlers and YouTubers.

The winner will receive  300,000,000 won (approximately $250,000 USD) so we can understand why ‘Sexyama’ has decided to put his MMA career on the backburner for this. He was already a big fan favourite on Korea and appearing on this TV series won’t have done his popularity any harm at all.