He pulled it out!
Both men fly at each other with knees, but of course, Imanari falls to his back to look for subs. Tokoro drops blistering punches from above until Imanari can catch his hands and work wrist control. They get to their feet and Imanari jumpkicks at Tokoro. Tokoro counters with a big punch that Imanari eats, but he falls back in an attempt to bait him to the floor. Tokoro follows and ends up fighting off an armbar before standing the fight back up. Tokoro circles around the outside and counters with a right straight off of an Imanari body kick. Of course, Imanari falls to the floor to grasp for a leg. Tokoro backpedals to keep it standing. He lands a few low kicks, staying just out of range of Imanari's leg dives.
Moritaka Oshiro steps between the men and issues a warning for stalling to both. Imanari tries for another jumping double kick, but Tokoro sidesteps and lands a hammerfists on Imanari's face before getting to his feet and retreating. Tokoro lands a one-two. Imanari, this time, chooses not to fall to his back to bait him to the floor. Imanari drops his hands in the hopes to goad Tokoro forward to engage him. Tokoro keeps his distance and continues to throw conservative counterpunches whenever Imanari gets close enough or when he dives to the canvas. With just under two minutes to go, Imanari jumps onto Tokoro in what looks like a bear hug. Tokoro spins Imanari into the corner and puts him on his back. Imanari works wrist control to stop the ensuing punches on the ground, but Tokoro manages to get a few in, despite this. Tokoro drops short punches for the final 20 seconds of the 10-minute opening frame.
Tokoro goes for the flying knee again, bowling Imanari over while he was dropping for a leg. He is unhurt however, as he gives chase to Tokoro. Tokoro retreats to keep a respectable distance between them. Imanari throws two looping left hooks at Tokoro, both of which connect. Imanari then jumps into guard, pulling Tokoro to the canvas. The Fighting Freeter stays in close on top, eating punches to his ears. Tokoro sits up quickly and lands one big punch before retreating out of guard. After Oshiro puts Tokoro's mouthguard back into his mouth, Tokoro lands two big punches, one of which forces Imanari to his posterior again. Back on the feet, Imanari jumps with another double kick, and falls to his back. Tokoro doesn't take the bait this time, but is sucked down to the canvas anyway with the following baseball slide. Imanari tries to work the rubber guard, but it's a no go. Imanari goes to his strengths instead and leans back for a leglock. Tokoro goes to all fours and slowly but surely gets his leg free. Imanari simply stands up, walks forward and pulls guard again. From bottom, he throws hammer fists to the top of Tokoro's head as the final moments expire. Despite a strong second round showing for Imanari, Sherdog.com awards the competitive fight to Hideo Tokoro, narrowly.
Official result: Judges Hikaru Adachi, Matt Hume and Kaoru Todori all award the bout to the winner by unanimous decision and Dream's Japan bantamweight grand prix champion, Hideo Tokoro. The announcement prompts the audience in attendance to explode in raucous applause for the fan favorite Tokoro.
# Hideo Tokoro def. Masakazu Imanari via unanimous decision (Japan bantamweight-tourney finale)