Why ONE’s Grappling World Champions Have The Tools To Strike Gold In 2019

ONE Championship’s stellar roster of athletes features 118 World Champions in all from all manner of martial arts – not least the grappling disciplines.

The masters of the ground game come from across the globe and represent the very best in the arts that feature trips, throws, takedowns, chokes, and joint locks inside The Home Of Martial Arts’ cage.

Of course, many of these warriors have shown they have some serious striking power when they are on their feet, but fans can usually see them do their best work when a contest ends up on the canvas.

Here is just a selection of the athletes who possess ground-game greatness.

Brazilian Submission Specialists

World-class BJJ from Leandro "Brodinho" Issa!

World-class BJJ from Leandro Brodinho Issa!Download the ONE Super App now ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp

Posted by ONE Championship on Sunday, August 19, 2018

As the birthplace of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Brazil has produced a host of elite-level champions who have gone on to compete with distinction inside the ONE Championship cage.

Evolve teammates and longtime friends Leandro “Brodinho” Issa and Alex “Little Rock” Silva both arrived in Asia as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champions, and Silva went on to capture the ONE Strawweight World Title, too.

The world of women’s grappling is also represented by a genuine legend of the art.

Brazil’s Michelle Nicolini has captured the BJJ World Title a staggering eight times and has used her submission skills to power her way towards the upper echelons of the women’s strawweight division in ONE.

Sambo Sensations

Massive strikes from Muin Gafurov!

Massive strikes from Muin Gafurov!Bangkok | 6 October | 5:30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneheroes18

Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, September 24, 2018

The Russian national martial art of sambo is ably represented by a host of ONE Championship stars, including former ONE Featherweight World champion Marat “Cobra” Gafurov.

The ONE Championship athlete lineup also features a pair of sambo World Champions among its ranks.

Russia’s Aziz Pahrudinov and Tajikistan’s Muin Gafurov captured World Titles earlier in their careers before they joined the world’s largest martial arts organization, and specialize in using their strengths to drag their opponents to the floor, where they can attack and finish in a hundred different ways.

Asian Masters On The Mat

Who should Shinya Aoki face next?

Who should Shinya Aoki face next?Download the ONE Super App now ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp

Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, December 18, 2018

ONE has a pair of Japanese submission specialists who have parlayed their submission skills to mixed martial arts success inside the cage – perhaps more than any others in the sport’s history.

Known as the king of leg and ankle locks, Masakazu “Ashikan Judan” Imanari’s elite-level submission skills took him to DEEP World Titles in two weight classes. His nickname translates as “The Great Master Of Leg Submissions,” which make up the lion’s share of his 26 career tapouts.

BJJ ace Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki leaned on his ability to submit almost any man to several mixed martial arts belts before he emerged on the global stage for martial arts, and then claimed the ONE Lightweight World Title in 2013.

He remains one of the most dangerous grapplers in mixed martial arts today and, like his compatriot, he earned his moniker for his otherworldly skills. His means “The Grand Master of Flying Submissions.”

Aoki is still a serious threat in ONE’s lightweight division and will challenge for the ONE Lightweight World Title once again when he faces champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang in Tokyo on 31 March.

No-Gi Grappling Greats

Grappling wizard Garry Tonon locks in a tight guillotine to force the tap from Sung Jong Lee at 2:04 of Round 2!

Grappling wizard Garry Tonon locks in a tight guillotine to force the tap from Sung Jong Lee at 2:04 of Round 2! Watch the full event LIVE & FREE on the ONE Super App ????http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast

Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, November 9, 2018

In addition to the world’s best grapplers who captured their titles in the traditional gi, the newer form of the grappling arts is also represented in ONE Championship, with a pair of champions who earned their titles in no-gi competition.

Brazilian jiu-jitsu star Bruno “Puccibull” Pucci won his World Title in no-gi competition when he was just a teenager. After he defended his crown, he used his skills as the foundation for his career in the cage.

This year, ONE also welcomed the arrival of one of the most spectacular grapplers on the planet – America’s Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon.

Tonon has captured a plethora of grappling titles, including multiple IBJJF World Championships and five Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) titles, and he is now making great strides as he continues his martial arts development under the global ruleset in mixed martial arts competition.

There are so many ways for athletes to win – and lose – mixed martial arts bouts, but these elite operators arguably have more in their boxes of tricks to win matches than much of the rest of the martial arts world.

Though stand-up specialists dominate the World Title landscape in ONE right now, these men and women who do their best work on the canvas have what it takes to change the complexion of the top tier in the world’s largest martial arts organization. Some have done it before, and there are many more waiting to do it again in 2019.