‘Seeing Who’s The Smoothest’ – Eddie Abasolo Excited To Face Luke Lessei In All-American Muay Thai Fight
Set for February 16 in U.S. primetime at ONE Fight Night 19: Haggerty vs. Lobo on Prime Video, that matchup has striking fans around the world – and especially in the United States – salivating in anticipation.
Each of these men put on a wildly entertaining performance in their most recent appearance.
In December, Lessei pushed Thai star and current #3-ranked contender “Smokin” Jo Nattawut to the limit in an epic Fight of the Year candidate.
And last June, Abasolo went to war with legendary competitor and #2-ranked contender Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong, showcasing incredible determination and a uniquely creative brand of striking.
Despite the obvious parallels – each losing via decision to elite Thai stars – “Silky Smooth” says their upcoming clash at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium is starting with a clean slate:
“I feel like going into this fight, it’s just another fight. You know, it’s not a rebound off of our last fight for me personally. I can only speak for myself. I can’t speak for him, but I feel like this fight is different.
“Because we’re both two dudes from the U.S. who do what we do very well. We just so happen to be in the same weight class, so it’s just a matter of seeing who’s the smoothest.”
The 37-year-old has been eyeing Lessei for some time, well aware that the two were likely to eventually share the ring.
But that doesn’t mean Abasolo has any personal animosity toward his American compatriot. Instead, he’s simply pumped to put on a show for fans of the sport:
“Years ago, after watching Luke and a couple of his fights, I knew I was going to fight him sometime down the road. You know what I mean? And it’s here, so I’m just excited about that. It’s definitely a fight that not just the U.S., but the world, is going to remember.”
Known for his “Silky Smooth” approach to Muay Thai and a rare ability to make adjustments on the fly, Abasolo is one of the most aesthetically pleasing strikers in any division.
Given his unorthodox style, it’s no surprise that he’s hesitant to make a firm prediction for his matchup with Lessei.
Ultimately, he is preparing for any and all scenarios:
“Man, I can’t even call it. I can’t call it. Because realistically, my last two fights, especially for ONE, I’ve expected certain things, and the rhythm wasn’t what I expected as far as pace goes. I didn’t expect my last fight to be a banger like it was with Sitthichai, but that’s what it turned into.
“Basically, anywhere that it goes, I’ll be ready to go there. Regardless if it’s fast-paced. Regardless if it’s slow-paced. If we really go for it, I’m going to be game.”
Abasolo Views Himself Among ‘The Best’ In His Division
More than just a chance to showcase the strength of American Muay Thai, a win for Eddie Abasolo at ONE Fight Night 19 would likely move him into the stacked featherweight Muay Thai top-five rankings.
Two fights ago, “Silky Smooth” finished then-#5-ranked Niclas Larsen, but he failed to make weight while hydrated and was ineligible for the rankings. From there, he lost the close contest to Sitthichai.
Given that history, Abasolo believes he should be considered among the featherweight Muay Thai elite already:
“So, I feel like I’m floating up there, but my name just isn’t on paper, you know? So, for me, I’m floating up there with the top five, if not top three. I feel like, regardless of whether my name is on paper or not, I’m gonna be put up there, and I’m gonna be put up against the best.”
Indeed, the American sensation will now battle current #5 contender Luke Lessei in a pivotal clash for his World Title aspirations.
Abasolo won’t look past “The Chef,” but he knows a victory on February 16 could earn him a date with one of the top dogs.
He spoke about his potential next opponent if he gets past Lessei in Bangkok:
“Top two or three – three at most depending on how the performance goes [at ONE Fight Night 19] and the performance after that. But I’m just gonna enjoy it. One fight at a time, you know.”