Sunday, November 4, 2012

Fighter Retrospective - Genki Sudo

Welcome to Leg Kick TKO, a MMA blog that’s a worse judge of fights than Cecil Peoples.

Fighter Retrospectives is when I take a look back at retired fighters (Or at least a guy that’s been fighting at least 15 years) and try to convince you why they are super-duper awesome.   Today, the focus is on the Transforming Trickster, the Neo-Samurai, Genki Sudo.

Wull, why should I care about this guy?  (That’s you)

Genki Sudo is probably my favorite fighter that I never saw live, and sometimes he’s my favorite fighter, period, with no qualifications.  He was predominantly a grappler, having done Greco-Roman wrestling in high school, and then later taking up Brazilian jiu-jitsu.  His striking wasn’t awful, and he even fought in some K-1 kickboxing bouts (to extremely limited success, going 2-4), but his hugging prowess easily overshadows his kickpuncher skills.  What really draws me to Sudo is his ability to mix showmanship with skill.  He had ridiculous entrances that not only blew most other fighter entrances out of the water (Pretty easy, since other than like five dudes all walk-outs are boring and bland), but were way better than a lot of professional wrestling entrances, too.  The antics didn’t stop inside the ropes (Or, for like three fights, the cage), though.  Genki would dance around during a fight, dropping his hands to do the robot, turn his back on his opponent, and basically refuse to take things seriously.  He claimed it was never to embarrass or make fun of his opponent, but his attempts at elevating the fight to a true art form.  His overarching message is We Are All One, a concept he enforced by carrying a banner with that phrase and various flags of the world stitched onto it.

Okay, wull, lemme see some of these “awesome entrances” I guess.  (You, again)

A Genki Sudo entrance is a great thing to behold because it always involves costumes, backup dancers, rad, choreographed moves, and usually the dramatic removal of the aforementioned costume.

He’s walked out to the fight as, among other things, several different space robots, a Chinese drunken boxer, some sort of aboriginal person, and Rick “Wild Thing” Vaughn.

Check out more Genki Sudo radness after the jump.


I guess some of those were pretty snazzy, but how good was he in a fight?  Like, probably just kinda “meh”, huh? (You’re kind of a jerk, you know that?)

I’ve already written about one of Sudo’s fights, and that ended with a giant swing transitioned into an Achilles’ lock.

His other bouts might not have such dramatic and crazy-insane endings, but they do feature a lot of cool grappling, erratic dancing, and plenty of spinning back fists.  The latter two items were prevalent because of the first, since Genki had no fear of being taken down because he could pretty much grapple his way out of any bad situation.

He was an amazing fighter that has done some impressive things, like submitting the enormous Eric “Butterbean” Esch, despite a 250 pound weight disadvantage (Though Sudo probably had a much bigger advantage in terms of skill and MMA experience) because Japan loves freaks show fights with a passion.  Overall, Sudo amassed a 16-3-1 record, only being stopped once by a very questionable technical knockout to former supreme radman, Norifumi “Kid” Yamomoto.  Sudo inexplicably retired in 2006, at just 28, claiming he was going to focus on transitioning into the Fourth Dimension.

WAT (Yeah, I know, kind of strange, but Sudo is a uniquely weird cat)

Sudo’s post-fight career and activities are just as interesting as his fight life.  After retiring, Sudo kept very busy.  He’s managed an over-30 baseball team, acted in a Kamen Rider series or two (As somekind of gay hug-man, I think?), tried to transition to the Fourth Dimension (Though he’s said reliance upon the material world has kept him tied to the 3.5th Dimension at best, for now at least), directed and starred in a segment of a movie called The R246 Story (His segment is about UFOs), and also has built up a music career.

Music, huh?  So, what, he’s some kinda tunesmith or somethin'? (Hey, you’re right for once!)

Genki Sudo is the writer, composer, choreographer, lead dancer and sole singer of the group World Order.  Despite the fact that I do not understand any Japanese (Though this is helpful), I find World Order’s videos fascinating, mostly due to the intricate choreography present in each one.

It’s mostly weird unison dancing and movements, and I’m compelled to watch each video over and over.

What can we learn from Genki Sudo?
  •  Flying triangles are rad
  • Spinning backfists are also rad
  • Mid-fight dance breaks are another rad thing