Former TUF 14 competitor Dustin Pague has his next assignment, and it’s now-former Shooto champ and UFC newcomer Kyoji Horiguchi. The two will throw down at UFC 166 on October 19th, which will go down in Houston, Texas.
Unless you’re a huge hardcore MMA fan you might not be familiar with Horiguchi, who has yet to compete outside of Japan. The reason big time, fighting enthusiasts are likely happy to hear Horiguchi is UFC bound, is because he was the Shooto 132 pound champion and has gone 11-1 to date. He’s also just 22 years old. The Krazy Bee fighter will enter the UFC having won five straight fights. If you want to see some of Horiguchi’s work, check out this pretty sweet highlight reel.
Pague (11-8) is likely in a must win situation, as the bantamweight has lost three straight and is 1-4 in the Octagon thus far. Most recently he lost by split decision to Yves Jabouin at UFC 161 on June 15th. At UFC on FX 3 last June, Pague tapped out Jared Papazian with a first round, rear-naked-choke.
So, it will be interesting to see how Horiguchi looks in his Octagon debut, and whether he can be a force in the UFC’s bantamweight division. Since he’s only 5’5 tall and has been competing at 132 pounds, the question’s been raised as to whether he might be better suited for flyweight.
UFC 166 will be hosted by Houston’s Toyota Center and will feature a rubber match between heavyweight champ Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos in the main event.
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