It finally happened.
Megumi “Mega Megu” Fujii , one of the best fighters to come out of Japan – male or female – has hung up her gloves. Fujii’s last fight was against the No. 1 ranked women’s strawweight fighter Jessica Aguilar.
During the match, Fujii took two pokes to the eye – accidental of course – and opted to fight on. Unfortunately, doctors decided to stop the match in the third round after Mega Megu endured several combinations from Aguilar.
It is sad to see Fujii’s career end on a loss, but rather than focus on her defeat, I am going to reflect and celebrate her career.
I had first heard about Mega Megu back in 2009. As I was proclaiming my love for Gina Carano and showing my awe of Cris “Cyborg” Justino – or Santos, as she was known back then – my best friend Tom Salaz told me about a Japanese fighter who many considered to be the No. 1 pound-for-pound women’s MMA fighter on the planet.
So I decided to look up this “Megumi Fujii” and I was amazed and impressed by her record and skill level. She had racked up 19 straight victories, many of them by submission.
As I then began to contemplate what it would be like if she were to come and fight the Cyborg – I still didn’t quite grasp the concept of weight classes back then – and sign with a major promotion.
In 2010, Bellator Fighting Championships announced that Fujii would be participating in their women’s 115-pound tournament. In the first two rounds of the tournament, Fujii would defeat both hot prospect by the name of Carla Esparza and an old rival in Lisa Ellis – now Ward – before meeting Zolia Gurgel in the finals.
Although Mega Megu went the distance with “The Warrior Princess” two of the three judges decided to award the match to Gurgel. It was the first loss of Fujii’s career. I will be honest, I thought Fujii had won that fight.
After her loss to Gurgel, Fujii won her next three fights, one of which was against Karla Benitez at Fight For Japan: Genki Desu Ka Omisoka 2011, presented by IGF, M-1 Global and Dream.
As a fan of Japanese MMA and the fight cards that are held on New Years Eve, it was great to see Fujii on such a big stage. Her fight with Benitez was also the first women’s MMA fight under the Dream banner.
Fujii’s next fight would be against Aguilar at Bellator 69. After three rounds, Aguilar walked away with the decision.
Mega Megu would face Mei Yamaguchi in 2012. She would win the fight by decision. This was her last match before her rematch with Aguilar.
Fujii ended her career, winning 23 of her 26 fights. She has only been finished once in her career and that was due to the doctor’s stoppage. That’s pretty impressive.
So my hat’s off to Mega Megu for a fantastic career. I will be going to the pub, claiming the free beer I won on Tuesday and drinking it in honor of her. .
What was your favorite Fujii moment? Answer with a comment below, send a tweet to @alstover or email [email protected]