Earthquake and Tsunami affect Japanese MMA world.
With the future of Japanese MMA already uncertain, there has been a further blow to JMMA with many events that were scheduled for this weekend being cancelled due to the massive earthquake that hit Japan just yesterday. The 8.9 Tohoku Region Pacific Ocean Earthquake and follow-up Tsunami have devastated many areas of Japan, and whilst there are more important things to worry about than sports at the moment this could have a huge effect on the already troubled Japanese MMA scene. Jewels, Shooto and Pancrase have all canceled events due to Friday’s earthquake. Even though they were all scheduled in cities away from most of the damage, there was enough done in their locations to warrant cancelation.
On a brighter note though it has been great to get reports coming through of MMA fighters, trainers and media sources being safe and well.
MMAJAPAN tweeted: “Aoki is OK,” referring to lightweight fighter Shinya Aoki.
Takanori Gomi tweeted: “We are Okey,safe. Thank you everyone”
Crusher_MMA (Tatsuya Kawajiri) tweeted: “Thank you worry. Is it safe for me and my family and friends. However, this earthquake is stronger than Melendez.”
Dana White tweeted: “Akiyama and his family are safe. He will be there for UFC 128″ Although there are now reports Akiyama will not feature on the card and Dan Miller will step in.
American fighter Jessica Aguilar, who was supposed to fight at JEWELS MMA in Tokyo, tweeted:
“I’ve experienced the scariest thing in my life an earthquake hit Japan at 8.8 points on richter scale.. My fight was cancelled, but that’s good news compared to the tragedy that is happening here. I am safe… Let’s keep Japan in our prayers.”
Roxanne Modafferi a fighter living and working in Japan has also made posts on Facebook and Twitter, indicating she is home safe.
Megumi Fuji reportedly blogged that she was on a train at the time the earthquake struck, but managed to get home safely. Concerned for her mother and brother, who were in the area most devastated, Megumi was eventually able to call and confirm that they were ok.
Also known to be safe are trainer Sean Frew and photographer and journalist Daniel Herbertson, both originally from Australia.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone in Japan as they face a long road to recover from this tragedy.