It will be a battle of the old-guard versus the new-school in the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix Championship Final this Sunday, 13 October, as the most dominant World Champion in mixed martial arts history takes on a young, hungry contender.
Kingad has been surrounded by greatness at Team Lakay and he has emerged as one of the most dynamic athletes on the global stage. If he can repeat the standard of his most recent performances, he can send shockwaves around the sporting world.
However, Johnson has shown why he is a legend, and that he can still do special things in the Circle, so he will be hard to overcome at the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo, Japan.
All that makes for an extremely tough match-up to call, so we recruited some of the men and women who have the keenest eye for analyzing match-ups – the heroes of ONE Championship – to get their takes.
It will come as no surprise to find out Kingad’s training partners are backing him, but the rest of the reasoning from these world-class competitors may not be what you expected.
Adriano “Mikinho” Moraes – ONE Flyweight World Champion
For me, it doesn’t matter who is going to win — I want to fight DJ. Moraes versus Johnson is the only fight that makes sense. I think he is going to win. I think DJ is more complete as a fighter and I want him to [win] the big final so we are going to get the best of the West against the best of the East.
Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon – Former ONE Bantamweight World Champion
I think Danny is stronger than DJ. They both have incredible speed, but I think Danny has the edge in strength, which I think will be a key in his win.
He’s preparing well for this match, as this will be his ticket to a World Title shot. Danny is 100 percent ready for this match.
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Bruno “Puccibull” Pucci – No-Gi BJJ World Champion
I think DJ will win by submission, maybe in round three because Team Lakay athletes are very durable – they are known for their cardio, and they don’t get tired easily.
Plus, DJ is very durable too, so he can push a very high pace, but I think he has more well-rounded skills.
I think [the finish will come in] round three because Danny will want to feel DJ out at the start, but eventually, DJ’s experience and skill will take over, and he will capitalize to take the win.
Stamp Fairtex – Two-Sport ONE World Champion
DJ is technically very strong. He will control the ground game and stay away from striking.
Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen — ONE Featherweight World Champion
I think Kingad’s gonna win, man. DJ is good. Hell yeah, he’s good – he’s got the world-class ability and just look at his World Title reign. It’s a no-brainer to pick DJ, but Danny Kingad is on another level.
He hits hard, he moves well, he’s very explosive, and he held on against a very high-level grappler [against Reece McLaren]. Watching his last few fights, he’s just getting better and better every time.
Agilan “Alligator” Thani – Former ONE Welterweight World Title Challenger
I have a feeling that Demetrious Johnson will take it. I think Demetrious just knows what he wants, and he will get what he wants from any opponent.
If somebody wants to defeat Demetrious, you need very good grappling and stand-up. When he’s on the ground, he’s unstoppable.
Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang – ONE Warrior Series Contract Winner
DJ has been considered one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world, but I believe in my teammate.
He is really prepared for this, and his will to win is burning. We all know that DJ is very well-rounded, and his movement is very unique. However, we have a game plan against DJ, and I hope it’s the key to defeating him.
Looking at it from an outside perspective, I think that DJ’s weaknesses are Danny’s strengths, which makes this an interesting match-up. Danny needs to impose his will, and I believe that he has a huge chance of winning this if he does.
“Kru Rong” Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke – Former ONE Strawweight World Champion
DJ is outstanding and well-rounded, and I think he will win.
Muhammad “Jungle Cat” Aiman – MIMMA Featherweight Champion
[This is] another nerve-wracking clash, but my pick is “Mighty Mouse.” I think he’ll win against the Philippines wonder kid.
I fought Kingad before. It was a long time ago, [and] he has improved so much now, but I still think Demetrious has more skills and experience than Kingad, in addition to being such an intelligent athlete.
I’m predicting that the American will finish it off by the third round, or maybe Kingad might prove me wrong and go the distance.
Honorio “The Rock” Banario – Former ONE Featherweight World Champion
DJ is very active inside the Circle, and if Danny can keep up with his activity, then they can be on an even footing.
However, he must be ready to go the distance with DJ. Danny is tough, and is not easily submitted, so I can see this stretching out because of them being so evenly-matched, with Danny squeezing out a win.
Eko Roni Saputra — Multiple-Time Indonesian Wrestling Champion
Demetrious will win the bout with a submission. We all know that he is very aggressive and agile.
Stefer Rahardian — ONE Indonesia Flyweight Tournament Champion
My take is that DJ is still the best in his class. With his extraordinary all-round skills and experience in being World Champion for years, he can earn the World Grand Prix Championship Title in Japan.
Nevertheless, Danny Kingad is one of the top contenders that cannot be taken lightly with his win streak in ONE Championship. I do believe this will be an explosive and technical bout, and I will not predict the outcome, since it’s 50-50 between the two.
Amir Khan – Record-Holder For Most KO Wins In ONE
I feel DJ will get it done within two rounds. Danny is a good, well-rounded fighter. He’s up-and-coming, and he has a chance, but I feel DJ’s experience will play a big part.
In the first round, Danny will come in explosively and try to put everything in his shots. DJ will play it smart using his footwork, take him down, control Danny, and I feel he will get the submission in the second round.
Tokyo | CENTURY | ONE Championship’s 100th Live Event | Tickets: Purchase here
- Watch PART I in USA on 12 October at 8pm EST and PART II on 13 October at 4am EST
- Watch PART I in India on 13 October at 5:30am IST and PART II at 1:30pm IST
- Watch PART I in Indonesia on 13 October at 7am WIB and PART II at 3pm WIB
- Watch PART I in Singapore on 13 October at 8am SGT and PART II at 4pm SGT
- Watch PART I in the Philippines on 13 October at 8am PHT and PART II at 4pm PHT
- Watch PART I in Japan on 13 October at 9am JST and PART II at 5pm JST
ONE: CENTURY is the biggest World Championship martial arts event in history with 28 World Champions featured across various martial arts. No organization has ever promoted two full-scale World Championship events on the same day.
The Home Of Martial Arts will break new ground as it brings multiple World Title bouts, a trio of World Grand Prix Championship Finals, and several World Champion versus World Champion matches to the famous Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo, Japan on 13 October.