Helping the excitement level of the Fight For Japan card was Dream's inaugural Bantamweight Grand Prix, which saw former WEC and quietly released UFC bantamweight Antonio Banuelos advance past Masakazu Imanari to face Bibiano "The Flash" Fernandes, who defeated Rodolfo Marques.
Banuelos and Fernandes met in the finals later that night after respective decision victories, with Yusup Saadulaev waiting in the wings if neither man could compete, but Saadulaev's highlight-reel slam over Hideo Tokoro would be the only appearance of the Russian prospect on the card.
Fernandes scored the first round TKO by showing vast improvements in his striking arsenal, and landed a left high kick followed by a two-punch combination that shook Banuelos enough to cause him to slip while backing up and fall victim to some heavy ground and pound, giving Fernandes the final win of his GP stint and the DREAM bantamweight championship.
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