Anatoly Malykhin Finishes Arjan Bhullar In Third Round To Become Undisputed Heavyweight World Champion
Anatoly “Sladkiy” Malykhin has finally unified the ONE Heavyweight MMA World Title.
In the main event of ONE Friday Fights 22 on June 23, the unbeaten Russian superstar dominated and finished defending ONE Heavyweight World Champion Arjan “Singh” Bhullar in their long-awaited unification bout at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.
Malykhin came into Friday’s match as the interim titleholder but claimed the undisputed crown with a decisive third-round TKO of his heated rival.
“Sladkiy’s” top-tier boxing was on display throughout the impressive performance.
The 35-year-old was the aggressor in the opening two frames, consistently pressuring the Indian-Canadian into the ropes, where he unleashed heavy punching combinations, attacking the head and body without discrimination.
Bhullar would survive to the third round – making for the longest fight of the Russian’s career – but it was still all one-way traffic in favor of the interim kingpin.
Sensing his opponent’s fatigue, Malykhin turned up the aggression in the third frame, blitzing the former Olympic wrestler with thunderous boxing before dragging him to the canvas.
From there, Bhullar tried his best to survive, even rolling out of the ring at one point – a tactic punished with a yellow card.
When the bout restarted, the Siberian juggernaut wasted no time in hammering “Singh” with concussive ground-and-pound strikes, eventually securing the referee stoppage at 2:42 into the frame.
With the victory, “Sladkiy” now sports a pristine 13-0 career MMA record and an incredible 100 percent finishing rate. The spectacular performance also earned him a US$50,000 bonus from ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong.
More importantly, Malykhin now owns the ONE Heavyweight World Title in addition to his ONE Light Heavyweight World Title, making him an undisputed two-division MMA king.
His gold-chasing apparently won’t stop there, though.
In his post-fight interview, the Russian called for a shot at reigning ONE Middleweight World Champion Reinier de Ridder – and a chance at his third ONE World Title.