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Anatoly Malykhin on Amir Aliakbari: ‘He Is Still The Same – Slow’

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ONE Interim Heavyweight World Champion Anatoly Malykhin always has his eye on the competition.

Although the ONE Championship titleholder is looking forward to a unification bout with ONE Heavyweight World Champion Arjan Bhullar, he was locked in on the recent heavyweight action at ONE on Prime Video 1: Moraes vs. Johnson II.

Competing on that card was a familiar face to Malykhin: Amir Aliakbari.

The Iranian picked up a victory and then proceeded to call out Malykhin for a rematch. Malykhin, however, was not impressed with the Iranian’s showing on the global stage.

“I watched his fight against Mauro [Cerilli]. What can I say? Aliakbari did not show anything new. He is still the same – slow. He does not breathe well. I don’t see what he can [do to] oppose my speed and functionality, my pressure,” Malykhin told ONE.

The first match went as planned for the Russian. Malykhin had called for a first-round knockout and delivered on the promise.

Although the result was definitive, Aliakbari’s talk has Malykhin ready to run it back. But he isn’t expecting a different result if a second meeting with the heavyweight grappler comes to fruition in the future.

“I already answered his challenge [for a second match] on social media, so now I have to drop him with the right [hand] – we can add a little variety to our fights,” said Malykhin.

The undefeated Russian has been lights out since arriving in ONE.

He has backed up all of his talk and has every reason to be as confident as he is ahead of his unification matchup.

Malykhin feels he is untouchable right now, and any rematch with Aliakbari would just be another easy night at the office.

“No one has a chance to [beat] me in this division. I am always 100 percent ready. A miracle must happen for someone, including Aliakbari, to [beat] me,” said Malykhin.

“It will not be difficult to drop Aliakbari again. This fight is easy money for me. If there is a second fight, then he will become another highlight [reel].”

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Jeremy Brand is an experienced MMA writer and columnist. He is the founder of, and has represented the company with media credentials at many mixed martial arts fights. Jeremy is also a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, training in BC, Canada.

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