3 Things We Learned att ONE: NextGen II
Bouts across all three sports, kickboxing, Muay Thai, and mixed martial arts, helped to fill out the event with nonstop action. New contenders emerged, and thrilling debuts wowed a global audience. But what else can we take away from the show?
Here are three things we learned following ONE: NextGen II.
Saemapetch vs. Rittewada Needs To Happen Again
Rittewada Petchyindee Academy made a successful debut against #1-ranked bantamweight Muay Thai contender Saemapetch Fairtex, but while he got the TKO finish, it only made fans want a rematch even more.
Why? Because of Saemapetch’s early success.
The Fairtex Gym representative was hammering Rittewada early and even looked like he was near a finish. He was asserting himself as the better man in the opening round and was connecting in the second as well.
However, this is to take nothing away from Rittewada. The Petchyindee Academy star showed his grit by overcoming the early assault and got his elbows going, which was what led to the stoppage by the doctor. If anything, his performance confirmed his status among the elite of the division.
And that’s why we need to see the rematch. After sharing the Circle with one another, a rematch could be epic and give the division its definitive #1 contender.
Tang Kai Is A Legitimate Title Threat
China’s Tang Kai had a mission in Singapore. He wanted to finish Yoon Chang Min and continue his ascent up the ranks. That mission was accomplished in a major way, and Tang Kai should be ranked in the next official ONE athlete rankings.
Tang has been untouchable in a very tough featherweight division thus far in ONE. He’s undefeated in the promotion, and the win over his South Korean rival moved his career finishing rate to 85%.
Tang wants to prove himself against the elite, and following a crisp finish of a formidable opponent should give him that opportunity. While he may be another match or two away from a title shot, he’s earned the right to square off against the upper echelon of the division.
Smokin’ Jo Nattawut Could Be A FWGP Spoiler
It is not uncommon for an alternate to get into the main field of any tournament, and at ONE: NextGen II, Smokin’ Jo Nattawut emerged as the top choice following a first-round knockout.
Nattawut landed a clean shot on Yurik Davtyan and left him on the canvas. Although Dovydas Rimkus looked solid in his bout later on the card, Nattawut’s power shot put him in the driver’s seat. And should he get in, don’t be surprised if he can complete upsets to capture the tournament crown.
Nattawut has excellent technique, great power, and good length for the division. Those factors could aid him in a run toward the silver belt at the end of the road. However, he can only get there if one of the semifinalists drops out. Time will tell, but Nattawut showed out on the global stage to show why he’s a huge threat in the division.