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5 Lessons We Learned From ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON

May 18, 2019

Even the most educated martial arts expert would not have predicted all of the stunning results of ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON.

The Singapore Indoor Stadium was treated to a spectacular night of martial arts action on Friday, 17 May, during which a stacked card of bouts delivered intense action, some highlight-reel finishes, and a series of surprises that proved that when the best face the best in ONE Championship, you never know what will be in store.

Here are five key takeaways we took from a thrilling night in “The Lion City.”

#1 Christian Lee Is A Martial Arts Phenomenon

POST-BOUT INTERVIEW Christian Lee and Shinya Aoki share a moment after their epic main event clash!

POST-BOUT INTERVIEW Christian Lee and Shinya Aoki share a moment after their epic main event clash! TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

Christian “The Warrior” Lee’s rise to the top of mixed martial arts has been meteoric, and his performance to defeat Japanese legend Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki and claim the ONE Lightweight World Title showed just how good he is.

Despite being just 20 years of age, Lee had the wherewithal and the temperament to deal with serious adversity during the first round when he found himself trapped in an agonizing armbar.

That ability to fight through the pain and find a way out showed his grit and determination, as well as a World Champion’s heart. And, just like all the great competitors, he pounced when he saw his opportunity as he dropped and finished Aoki early in the second round.

With the backing of his family at United MMA and his teammates at Evolve, plus the knowledge and experience passed on by his sister, “Unstoppable” Angela Lee, and his own immense talent, all the building blocks are in place for him to be one of the world’s best for years to come.

#2 Regian Eersel Could Be The Next All-Time Kickboxing Great

Dutch phenom Regian Eersel outstrikes Nieky Holzken to win by unanimous decision and be crowned the first-ever ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Champion!

KING OF THE RING Dutch phenom Regian Eersel outstrikes Nieky Holzken to win by unanimous decision and be crowned the first-ever ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Champion!TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

Dutch striker Regian “The Immortal” Eersel’s heroic performance elevated him to the very top of his profession and proved what those who have watched his rise through the ranks already knew – that he was a World Champion in waiting.

After a brilliant display to defeat Nieky “The Natural” Holzken and claim the ONE Lightweight Kickboxing World Title in the co-main event in Singapore, the future looks bright for the modest, yet confident, 26-year-old.

The Amsterdam native put on a cool-as-ice performance against a decorated martial arts icon under the bright lights of the Singapore Indoor Stadium, and proved that he has all the attributes to defeat the very best on the planet.

Now that he has defeated a legend to claim ONE gold, the stage is set for Eersel to embark on a reign that could see him earn all-time great status in the sport.

#3 Anything Can Happen In Martial Arts

Petchmorakot advances to the semifinals of the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix with a split-decision win over the legendary Giorgio Petrosyan!

Petchmorakot advances to the semifinals of the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix with a split-decision win over the legendary Giorgio Petrosyan! Watch the full event on the ONE Super App http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON produced a host of shocking results as legends met their downfall in many of the marquee match-ups.

In addition to the icons who lost in the main events, both Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex and Giorgio “The Doctor” Petrosyan – who were pegged as pre-tournament favorites – stunningly crashed out of the US$1million ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix at the quarter-final stage.

Samy Sana shocks the with a unanimous decision victory over Yodsanklai to secure his spot in the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix semifinals!

Samy Sana shocks the with a unanimous decision victory over Yodsanklai to secure his spot in the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix semifinals!Watch the full event on the ONE Super App http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

Yodsanklai was knocked down on his way to a unanimous decision defeat by an inspired Samy “AK47” Sana, while two out of three judges gave Lumpinee Stadium Muay Thai World Champion Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy Petrosyan the nod over Petrosyan.

These proved two things –  the level of talent in the tournament is incredible, and anything can happen in martial arts.

There are pre-bout favorites and underdogs, but when two World Champions face off, there is no such thing as a foregone conclusion.

#4 Cosmo Alexandre Could Win Gold In Mixed Martial Arts

JUST. LIKE. THAT! Cosmo Alexandre knocks out Sage Northcutt 29 seconds into the first round

JUST. LIKE. THAT! Cosmo Alexandre knocks out Sage Northcutt 29 seconds into the first round Watch the full event on the ONE Super App http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

ONE Championship fans have only seen Cosmo “Good Boy” Alexandre in action under the Global Ruleset for 29 seconds, but the Brazilian striker has a martial arts pedigree that suggests he could be a triple-threat contender in The Home Of Martial Arts.

The Brazilian has already won four World Titles in Muay Thai and three more in kickboxing, but following his incredible KO of “Super” Sage Northcutt, his mixed martial arts record now stands at 8-1 – with his only loss coming on his professional debut.

The 36-year-old stopped the American with his very first punch of the contest. For some fans, the result was a huge surprise, but for those who have watched Alexandre perform through the years, the result was merely a validation of his pedigree across multiple disciplines.

The ONE welterweight division is wide open, and Alexandre could throw his hat into the ring as a future challenger for the belt held by Zebaztian “The Bandit” Kadestam.

The Swedish ONE Welterweight World Champion also comes from a Muay Thai background, so a five-round bout in 4-ounce gloves against “Good Boy” could produce fireworks on an epic scale.

#5 Miao Li Tao May Be The Next Big Thing At Strawweight

WHAT. A. KNOCKOUT

WHAT. A. KNOCKOUT Miao Li Tao turns the lights out on former ONE World Champion Dejdamrong with a HUGE left hook!Watch the full event on the ONE Super App http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, 17 May 2019

ONE’s strawweight division is packed with exciting talent, but Chinese star Miao Li Tao looks like he could have what it takes to go all the way to the top.

The Shaolin martial artist registered the 11th win of his career by claiming a huge knockout victory over Thai legend Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke.

Though he was up against a former ONE Strawweight World Champion and multiple-time Lumpinee Stadium Muay Thai World Champion, Miao showed great composure and courage to engage in a striking battle.

The 26-year-old from Bejing’s aggression was remarkable as he took charge from the outset, and then connected flush with a crisp left hook to score a highlight-reel finish and announce himself as a contender in the weight class.

A host of exciting match-ups await, and another big win or two could see Miao jump into the World Title picture.