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Mixed Martial Arts

More hybrid rules super fights? ONE boss says ‘Definitely’

The ONE X mega-event couldn’t have gone any better for ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong.

The three-part card celebrating the promotion’s 10th anniversary delivered memorable moments across 20 fights on Saturday, with action ranging from mixed martial arts to kickboxing, Muay Thai, and submission grappling.

The headline attraction also lived up to the hype, as ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion Angela Lee survived an early onslaught from Stamp Fairtex before pulling off a dramatic second-round submission victory.

“It was magnificent. It was everything I thought it would be,” Sityodtong said following the historic show at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

“The main and co-main [event] just blew the stadium away, just blew the whole world away, you know. That was insane, so much fun.”

That co-main event was the special rules super-bout between MMA great Demetrious Johnson and ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Champion Rodtang Jitmuangnon.

Some eyebrows were raised when ONE’s CEO first announced the MMA-Muay Thai hybrid tussle between “Mighty Mouse” and “The Iron Man,” with UFC head honcho Dana White calling the idea “weird” and saying it “won’t work.”

But now, all those doubts and criticism have been put to rest.

Johnson went toe-to-toe with Rodtang in the all-striking first round, as he exchanged fiery blows with the Muay Thai megastar. And in the MMA second round, the 12-time Flyweight World Champion landed a takedown and then put his opponent to sleep with a rear-naked choke.

Because the matchup was well-received, Sityodtong stated that his promotion wants mixed-rules bouts to be a regular fixture at ONE events.

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“One thing that I realized, we’re definitely going to do more special rules super-fights. Definitely. Cause it’s so interesting, you know? So we’ll definitely do more of those in the future,” he stated.

“I literally said to [ONE matchmaker] Matt Hume, ‘Bro, get a creative session together. Let’s all do it. Let’s pick our brains, anybody in the roster, any crazy ideas, any wacky things we could do. We could literally give the fans something – a special treat that no one else can do in the world.’”

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