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Ruotolo Brothers Beaming With Confidence Ahead Of ONE Fight Night 21

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Kade and Tye Ruotolo will compete on the same card for the first time since their ONE Championship debut in 2022. It will be a chance for the twins to shine together once more. At ONE Fight Night 21 on Prime Video, Kade will battle Francisco Lo in a 180-pound catchweight submission grappling match, and Tye will defend the ONE Welterweight Submission Grappling World Title against Izaak Michell.

Both men are excited about their matchups. For Kade, he is seeking his first submission since 2022. Tye is taking on one of the most physical grapplers on the planet. It lays the groundwork for two outstanding matches that excite the Ruotolo brothers as they want opponents who bring the action.

“I think the common denominator there is when people come to us to fight, they usually end up getting submitted. Garry [Tonon], Garry came to fight. Shinya [Aoki] was a little bit more defensive, and Reinier de Ridder was a bit more defensive; those matches, we didn’t get the sub. Guys that really come for us, come to attack,” Tye told ONE.

The lack of finishes is weighing on Kade. After defending the lightweight crown in January, he hopes a departure from his division will bring a submission. Although frustrated he cannot get the tap out, he is taking everything in stride and laughing about it all.

“It was the funniest thing because that’s been my ONE Championship curse as of recently. You know, it’s my style, it’s no lack of effort, I’m coming close in almost every match. The Shinya match I had the buggy choke at the end, that was real tight. The Tommy one, I cinched in a triangle that was pretty tight. I was always pushing, and I felt my opponent breaking at the end, but I just wasn’t able to get the finish. Same thing with my Matheus match. It’s funny because ADCC was all submissions, four submissions,” Kade said.

The brothers each share a drive to be the best. They have even competed against each other. And heading into ONE Fight Night 21, each man has their own plans to put in place in Bangkok.

“For me, I want to fight the toughest guys possible. I’ve been calling out [Nicholas] Meregali; it’s the fight I’ve been wanting for a long time. Meregali and Gordon [Ryan]. The Gordon match, I can take some time, I want to get a little bit bigger before I fight him, but Meregali I want tomorrow. I’m not looking past Izaak; I want to take on the biggest, best guys possible. And that’s why I’m fighting Izaak because he’s on that list,” Tye stated.

With two grueling matches at hand, Kade is sure they will both come out on top. The confidence is not just because they are on a run of wins but because their brotherly dynamic has prepared them for this moment. He feels the way they push each other prepares them in a way no one else could ever match.

“My brother and I, we’ve had one-hour slap fighting, basically open-hand punches, black eyes, the whole deal, for just an hour straight. So we know no one is prepared to go to that length with us. That’s that confidence, that mental toughness. No one is prepared to go through that,” Kade said.

ONE Fight Night 21 airs live on Prime Video on Friday, April 5. The action begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT. The event is free for all Amazon Prime members based in the U.S. and Canada.

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Jeremy Brand is an experienced MMA writer and columnist. He is the founder of MMASucka.com, 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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