Norifumi Yamamoto

TRAINING: Two sets of standup, wrestling, grappling and conditioning a day

When and why did you start training for fighting? My sister gave me a mixed martial arts video when I was 24, and when I saw fights of my weight class, I thought “I’m much stronger than these guys.” At that moment, I decided to quit wrestling and my mixed martial arts career began.

What ranks and titles have you held? K-1 Hero’s 2005 Middleweight (70kg class) Grand Prix Tournament Champion

Do you have any heroes? My father, Muhammad Ali, Naseem Hamed

What does it mean for you to fight in the UFC? I see the UFC as the world’s best league for mixed martial arts fighters, so fighting in the UFC means a lot to me. I want to see how far I can go, especially since my class (135lbs) has just been established. I feel this is my one and only time to really challenge myself in this world.

Did you go to college and if so what degree did you earn? B.A. in Law

What was your job before you started fighting? I’ve always been a fighter. I thought about becoming a lawyer, but didn’t have to think too much.

Specific accomplishments in amateur competition?  All Japan Freestyle Wrestling National Championships (Emperor’s Cup) 1999 128 lbs: 2nd place, 2007 132 lbs: 4th place. All Japan College Wrestling Championships – 58kg Freestyle Champion. Arizona State 3-time High School Champ (130lbs class) – Freshman (date to follow) 119 lbs: 3rd place. Sophomore 125 lbs: 1st place. Junior 130 lbs: 1st place. Senior 135 lbs: 1st place. High School Wrestling Record: 112-4. In 2004, went 32-0 and had 159 takedowns.

Favorite grappling technique: All of them

Favorite Striking technique: All of them

•    Veteran of nearly 11 years in the pro game

•    13 wins by KO, 2 by submission

•    1-3 in four K-1 kickboxing bouts

•    Accomplished amateur wrestler – competed in the 2008 Olympic trials

•    Scored fastest KO in K-1 Hero’s history – 4 seconds against Kazuyuki Miyata in 2006

•    Has defeated Jeff Curran, Royler Gracie, Caol Uno, Genki Sudo, and Bibiano Fernandes

•    Father Ikuei Yamamoto represented Japan as a wrestler in the 1972 Olympic Games

Fight History

Skill Breakdown
Charts are compiled based on results from all fights.
Total Fights: 6
Record: 18-6-0, 1NC
Summary: Wrestling, knockout power
Fighter Info
Nickname: Kid
From: Kanagawa Japan
Fights Out Of: Tokyo Japan
Age: 35
Height: 5′ 4" ( 162 cm )
Weight: 135 lb ( 61 kg )


Total Attempted Strikes
37% Successful
Types of Successful Strikes
79% Standing
Striking Defense
The percentage of total strikes avoided


Total Takedowns
25% Successful
Grappling Totals by Type
Takedown Defense
The percentage of total takedowns avoided
Result Fighters Event Str TD Sub Pass Method Replay
Norifumi Yamamoto
UFC® 144: Edgar vs. Henderson

Feb 25, 2012

21 1 0 0 R1Submission
Vaughan Lee 14 0 2 0
Norifumi Yamamoto
UFC® : Velasquez vs. Dos Santos

Nov 12, 2011

15 1 0 0 R3Decision – Unanimous
Darren Uyenoyama 15 2 1 3
Norifumi Yamamoto

Feb 5, 2011

16 0 0 0 R3Decision – Unanimous
Demetrious Johnson 38 10 0 4
Norifumi Yamamoto

May 29, 2010

9 0 0 0 R1KO/TKO
Federico Lopez 3 0 0 0
Masanori Kanehara
Dynamite!! 2009

Dec 31, 2009

27 1 0 3 R3Decision – Unanimous
Norifumi Yamamoto 32 0 0 0
Joe Warren

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