5 Reasons Why Jarred Brooks Could Be The Best Strawweight MMA Fighter In The World

American MMA fighter Jarred Brooks

Jarred “The Monkey God” Brooks is determined to reclaim his throne in ONE Championship – and he doesn’t think anyone can stop him. 

With reigning divisional king Joshua “The Passion” Pacio sidelined with a torn ACL, the American star will face #3-ranked contender Gustavo “El Gladiador” Balart for the ONE Interim Strawweight MMA World Title in the main event of ONE Fight Night 24 on Prime Video.  

Brooks lost the gold when he was disqualified for delivering an illegal slam to the Filipino back in March, but while he waits for his chance to rectify the situation, he’ll go after the interim crown live in U.S. primetime on Friday, August 2.

Time and time again, “The Monkey God” has proven that he is a ferocious competitor, and he’ll be even more intense now that he is a new father.

Ahead of his highly anticipated return at the iconic Lumpinee Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, here are five reasons why Brooks could very well be the best strawweight MMA fighter on the planet.

#1 He Has Phenomenal Wrestling 

There’s no hiding Brooks’ go-to formula – put his opponents on their backs and pummel them. However, that doesn’t mean they can stop it. 

As a lifelong wrestler and high school state champion, it’s innate for the 31-year-old.  

Brooks has explosive double-legs that can take his rivals for a ride, as well as effective single-legs and body locks that can drag them to the canvas.

With 11/16 takedowns scored in ONE for a 69 percent success rate, the American’s ability to get the fight to the canvas at the top level is well-proven.  

He’s also yet to concede a single takedown in the world’s largest martial arts organization, which sets him in good stead against Balart on August 2.  

#2 He Has A Punishing Ground Game 

Brooks has leveled up his submission grappling alongside his wrestling to make himself an extremely potent threat in MMA.  

“The Monkey God” doesn’t offer his opponents any respite on the canvas, as he remains busy with ground-and-pound to set up his guard passing and finishing opportunities.  

He likes to take mount or expose the back, where he can search for his two favorite submissions.  

The highest percentage is the rear-naked choke he has used to submit five adversaries to date, followed by his arm-triangle choke, which is one of his options from the mount position.  

Even if he can’t secure a submission, Brooks’ smothering control is hard to escape. In fact, his opponents are only relieved when the bell sounds to end a round. 

#3 He Has An Incredible Gas Tank 

Brooks pushes a hectic pace that can break his opponents in the early rush, but if they’re experienced enough to overcome the initial onslaught, they need to be prepared for a prolonged one.  

“The Monkey God” has gone the distance 11 times in his career, winning 10 of those bouts and coming up on the wrong side of one controversial split decision. 

In all of those battles, fans will have rarely seen the Mash Fight Team product take his foot off the gas and coast. He’s all-go, all the time.

To prove that point, he was still explosive in the fifth round of his ONE Strawweight MMA World Title victory against Pacio in December 2022. 

Deep into the final frame, Brooks still had the energy to slam the Filipino and deliver ground-and-pound until the bell. 

#4 He Is A Threat On The Feet 

Although Brooks is renowned for his wrestling, opponents can’t sleep on the danger he presents on the feet. 

“The Monkey God” has worked diligently to add to his striking game over time. He has always been aggressive, fast, and powerful – which already makes him a serious threat – but he has continued to hone his skill set to make his stand-up game more lethal.  

Brooks has knocked out two opponents via strikes that showcase his brute force, and he hurt Hiroba Minowa with his hands when they fought in January 2022.

Perhaps more impressively, the Indiana native moved well and outstruck Pacio for large portions of their five-round clash, indicating a more thought-out approach against an elite striker.  

The American struck first, scored with combinations, and got back out of range to really show his fight IQ. 

#5 He Has An Unbreakable Mindset 

Although it’s harder to nail down with statistics, Brooks’ mental game also plays a huge role in his success. 

The American has always believed he could beat anyone in front of him, especially at strawweight. A big reason for that is because he has fought – and defeated – bigger opponents at flyweight and bantamweight in the past. 

It’s not a confidence without roots. It comes from his belief in his world-class skill set and the huge amount of work he puts into his trade to prepare himself for competition.  

When the time comes to battle it out in the ring or Circle, Brooks has an impeccable belief in himself that comes through in his performances – assured, dominating, and prosperous.  

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