‘My Goal Is To Fight For The Title Again’ – John Lineker Eyes Gold Ahead Of Clash With Kim Jae Woong
Former ONE Bantamweight MMA World Champion John “Hands of Stone” Lineker is solely focused on one goal – recapturing the 26 pounds of gold he once wore around his waist.
On Friday, August 4, the Brazilian brawler will return to North American primetime and face Kim Jae Woong in a pivotal matchup at ONE Fight Night 13: Allazov vs. Grigorian on Prime Video.
The bout in Bangkok, Thailand, comes six months after Lineker suffered a crushing TKO defeat against newly crowned bantamweight king Fabricio Andrade.
The current #1-ranked contender is now determined to earn another World Title shot, and that journey begins with the dangerous South Korean.
Lineker spoke to onefc.com about the importance of his showdown with Kim:
“What excites me the most about this fight, regardless of the opponent, is that I have the opportunity to get back in the game and pursue my goal, which is to fight for the title again.
“I think that whatever fight I do from now on, what will excite and motivate me is this opportunity to seek the title again. So, regardless of the opponent, my goal is to fight for the title again.”
“Hands of Stone” knows that beating a talented contender like Kim could secure him a crack at the bantamweight crown in his very next outing.
With that in mind, he’s spent the time since his loss to Andrade training as if a World Title challenge is on the line, fine-tuning his body and mind while working to improve any weaknesses.
Lineker says that additional work – coupled with steady and reliable support from his family – has put him in top form once again:
“This time away from ONE, I used it to make a good recovery. First in my physique, then in my mind. I reflected on how to get back into the game, how to stay focused, so I worked on that psychological part a lot.
“My personal life has not changed at all. Thank God, I have been living my life very well with my wife and children. It didn’t change anything.
“At the gym, we have been training more, focusing more on what I need to improve. I’ve been trying to perfect myself in everything, boxing, Muay Thai, and jiu-jitsu. I’ve been training a lot. And always focused on my goal, which is to come back strong for the game and fight for the title again.”
Lineker Expects Fireworks On August 4: ‘We Will Put On A Show’
If John Lineker wants another chance to claim the ONE Bantamweight MMA World Title, he’ll first have to get past Kim Jae Woong on August 4.
Known as “The Fighting God,” the powerful South Korean has fought the elite at both featherweight and bantamweight, earning all four of his ONE Championship victories by way of stoppage.
That makes him a risky opponent for any competitor, and Lineker is expecting a stand-up war:
“[Kim’s] game is boxing. He plays more in the long distance. He’s very versatile, he works well on takedown defenses, and he’s also a guy who kicks a lot. But I believe that in striking, we will put on a show because we both like striking more.”
For his part, “Hands of Stone” has earned a reputation as one of the planet’s most fearless punchers who thrives in almost any striking battle.
Against the taller, longer Kim, he plans to work in close range, where he can fire off his trademark body shots – always with the ultimate goal of scoring another highlight-reel knockout.
“I believe I’ll be able to fit my punches more, working hard on the punches in the waistline. As I said, he is a striker who works in the long distance, and I like to work more in the short distance. I believe that I can hit him more with my striking.”