In every revolution, there’s something extremely important to fight for.
The same can be said for all the main card participants who are scheduled for action at ONE: REVOLUTION this Friday, 24 September.
Every athlete is either competing for a World Title, a World Championship opportunity, or to keep their spotless mixed martial arts record clean. But there’s even more at stake than meets the eye.
Here, we break down what’s on the line for each fighter on the stacked ONE: REVOLUTION main card.
Lee vs. Ok: Defining The Lightweight Landscape
In the main event, ONE Lightweight World Champion Christian “The Warrior” Lee defends his belt against #3-ranked contender Ok Rae Yoon, and the outcome will dramatically change the landscape of the division.
The 23-year-old Lee has quickly established himself as one of the most dominant mixed martial artists in ONE Championship history. The Singaporean-American superstar already holds the records for most victories (15), finishes (14), and knockouts (10).
A win on Friday would not only extend those records, but it would give Lee the most ONE Lightweight World Title defenses in history (3). Moreover, another victory would mean he’s beaten all five of the division’s ranked contenders, leaving no viable options to immediately challenge for the crown.
Ok, however, represents the other side of the spectrum.
If he dethrones “The Warrior,” the South Korean phenom would continue his epic 2020, become the sixth person to hold the lightweight strap, and present a fresh divisional king for the other contenders to challenge.
Capitan vs. Zatout: Double Or Nothing
A heated World Title bout is scheduled for the co-main event.
Four months after his record-setting six-second knockout, Thai star Capitan Petchyindee Academy finished Alaverdi “Babyface Killer” Ramazanov in the latter’s first ONE Bantamweight Kickboxing World Title defense to claim the gold this past January.
Capitan may have the belt in his possession right now, but things have been elevated to the next level. At ONE: REVOLUTION, he’s defending the gold against Ramazanov’s mentor and friend, Mehdi “Diamond Heart” Zatout.
Zatout, who runs Venum Training Camp Thailand, is a well-respected veteran of the striking arts and taught “Babyface Killer” everything he knows. But there are still some tricks that “Diamond Heart” hasn’t shared, and he plans to display them on Friday at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
If Capitan can beat the French-Algerian, he’ll be 2-0 against Venum Training Camp Thailand and truly prove that he’s the rightful bantamweight kickboxing king. But Zatout has a chance to avenge his pupil, own the richest prize in the sport, and bring the gold back to his gym.
Pacio vs. Saruta: A Trilogy Bout For Strawweight Supremacy
Kicking off the trio of World Title fights is a long-awaited trilogy match to crown the best strawweight on the planet.
Reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio has already established himself as the most dominant king in the division’s history, competing in the most World Title bouts (6) and owning the most World Title defenses (2).
But former titleholder Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta is a real threat to his reign. After all, he’s currently the #1-ranked contender and previously took the belt away from the Filipino.
When these two athletes first met in January 2019, Saruta edged out Pacio via split decision to win the ONE Strawweight World Title. But three months later, “The Passion” knocked out the Japanese star with an epic head kick to reclaim the gold.
Nearly two-and-a-half years later, both men find themselves at the top of the pile, and whoever leaves the Singapore Indoor Stadium with the strap will have earned ultimate bragging rights. That man will also be known as the greatest strawweight mixed martial artist on the planet.
Nguyen vs. Kim: Featherweights Collide In World Title Eliminator
Two of the organization’s best featherweight mixed martial artists will meet in “The Lion City,” and the winner could line themselves up for a crack at gold in 2022.
Nguyen, who’s currently the #1-ranked contender, could quickly return to World Title contention with a victory at ONE: REVOLUTION. A win would also give him the most victories in ONE featherweight history (10), while a knockout would tie him with Phoe “Bushido” Thaw for most KOs (7) and with the aforementioned Lee for most finishes (9).
Unless he earns a 29-second submission win or a 10-second knockout, #5-ranked “The Fighting God” Kim Jae Woong won’t enter the record books on Friday. But that isn’t a priority for the South Korean.
Kim promised his late father that he’d become an MMA World Champion, and a victory over the top-ranked contender in this ONE Featherweight World Title eliminator could be his ticket to fulfilling that dream.
Aliakbari vs. Malykhin: The Next Potential Heavyweight Challenger?
ONE Heavyweight World Champion Arjan “Singh” Bhullar will pay extra attention to this matchup because his next challenger could announce himself with a convincing performance.
Since joining ONE Championship, Greco-Roman Wrestling World Champion Amir Aliakbari has engaged in a war of words with several of the organization’s top heavyweights, including his forthcoming opponent, undefeated Anatoly “Sladkiy” Malykhin.
But the brash Iranian suffered a surprising setback in his promotional debut, as he was knocked out by “Mighty Warrior” Kang Ji Won in March, causing Malykhin to laugh and celebrate backstage.
“Sladkiy,” however, has other plans. The happy-go-lucky Russian expects to maintain his unblemished 9-0 record, keep his 100 percent finishing rate intact, and move closer to a shot at the gold.
This rivalry was already heated, and now that this bout is officially a ONE Heavyweight World Title eliminator, everything has been turned up another notch.
Lee vs. Souza: The Battle Of Undefeated Victorias
Opening the show is an atomweight mixed martial arts contest between young, unbeaten competitors named Victoria.
Victoria “The Prodigy” Lee has been grabbing all the headlines. The 17-year-old phenom – younger sister to lightweight king Christian Lee and atomweight queen “Unstoppable” Angela Lee – has enjoyed a spectacular rookie year in the sport, finishing both of her opponents via submission.
She wants to add another finish to her slate, go 3-0 in 2021, and live up to her family’s stellar reputation.
But Victoria “Vick” Souza has other plans. The debuting Brazilian is 5-0 with an 80 percent finishing rate, and she believes she possesses the “perfect strategy” to derail the high schooler’s hype train.
If Souza’s tactics pay off, she could become the next atomweight rising star to watch.