ONE Championship showed out in its U.S. debut on May 5. The promotion brought its unique brand of martial arts to the 1stBank Center in Colorado and showed the world exciting martial arts action across submission grappling, Muay Thai, and MMA. It delivered as promised.
ONE Fight Night 10, available for free replay on Prime Video, shook up the scene in the U.S. In one of the year’s most important events, the full slate of action was exciting from start to finish, with wild action, knockouts, and submissions. This is what we learned from ONE Fight Night 10.
Johnson’s Greatness Is Unquestioned
“Mighty Mouse” continues to amaze. Demetrious Johnson defeated Adriano Moraes to complete their trilogy and retain the ONE Flyweight World Championship. And he did so by showing the world a masterclass of martial arts.
The Washington native controlled the action in the clinch. He damaged Moraes’ body with short knees, defended takedown attempts, and won the position battles. “Mikinho” tried his best but could not upend the sitting champion.
The performance was another showcase of his immense talent, but more importantly, it was a showcase of his brilliant mind. Johnson has one of the best Fight IQs in the sport’s history, which is why many consider him to be the GOAT. After his latest title defense, he has a great argument for that distinction.
But no matter where you stand on that argument, fans around the world recognize his greatness. His skill set is near-perfect. His mind operates on a different level. He is the complete package, and fans will miss him when he finally decides to hang up the gloves.
America Is Ready For Submission Grappling
Although Reinier De Ridder and Tye Ruotolo squared off earlier in the night, Mikey Musumeci‘s defense of the ONE Flyweight Submission Grappling World Championship against Osamah Almarwai was the jaw-dropping moment of the evening for the sport. The fans not only embraced submission grappling but were on the edge of their seats.
When ONE brought in submission grappling, the promotion made it a point to state they wanted to grow the sport on a global scale. The response from the 1stBank Center audience showed they were accomplishing that goal. When Musumeci locked in the choke, it was an eruption of cheers.
Musumeci is leading the charge. Submission grappling is gaining traction, and fans are buying in. That is an incredible and positive turn for martial arts. It is a well-deserved comeuppance for a sport that has given us so much entertainment over the years without adoration in return. Times are changing.
Stamp, Rodtang Are Superstars
It came as no surprise that Thai stars Stamp Fairtex and Rodtang Jitmuangnon were featured on the card. They are two charismatic athletes that should, and were, promoted on the massive event. However, nobody could have predicted the fervor that hit the 1stBank Center when they made their appearances.
The Colorado crowd embraced both Stamp and Rodtang as if they were longtime fan favorites and not just entering the U.S. for the first time to compete. Stamp charmed the crowd. Rodtang was mobbed as he made his way to the back. This was their breakout moment in America.
The reason the crowd is in love with both athletes is quite simple. They are spectacular to watch. Their star power is matched by their incredible skill and technique inside the Circle. Stamp’s body kick KO and Rodtang’s perfectly timed counter elbow knockout exemplified why fans tune in to watch them compete.
As ONE continues to make inroads into the U.S., Stamp and Rodtang will be central figures. They have to be. The fans want more. And more is likely what they will get in the coming months and years.