ONE Championship promised something groundbreaking for their tenth anniversary show ONE X, which is scheduled for December 5, and boy have they been living up to expectations.
ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong announced three of the card’s bouts on Thursday morning (Manila time) on Ariel Helwani’s “The MMA Hour,” but it’s the Muay Thai-Mixed Martial Arts hybrid megabout between Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson and ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Champion Rodtang “The Iron Man” Jitmuangnon that’s been getting all the attention.
“It’s going to be the biggest and most unique show in the history of the company. I think it’s going to be something crazy fun all over the world,” Sityodtong said.
The men will battle under a unique ruleset, competing in three, four minute rounds where the disciplines change with each round.
In the first round, Rodtang and Johnson will compete under Muay Thai rules before the match moves to a mixed martial arts bout in the second round.
If both survive each other’s expertise in the first two rounds, then the match will return to Muay Thai once more in the third before ending with mixed martial arts in the fourth.
Pitting two of the best athletes of their respective sports against each other in a hybrid match like this is an exciting way to banner a milestone night.
“Rodtang – his record is 267 wins and 42 losses in Muay Thai – he’s literally the hottest KO striker on the planet when it comes to striking arts right now. He’s 10-0 in ONE and he’s the World Champion, and he has three minutes to knock out DJ,” Sityodtong said.
“But then if [DJ] survives, in the next round, Rodtang has to survive three minutes of DJ’s explosive wrestling and submissions. I don’t think DJ is going to strike with him. DJ has that pressure. [He has] to sub him in three minutes. The same thing for Rodtang in the first round. [He has] to knock him out in three minutes.
“We want to do something fun that would commemorate martial arts in a way that celebrates all of mixed martial arts and history, not just our ten year history.”
Almost lost in the conversation are two equally massive World Title matches.
Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes defends his ONE Bantamweight World Title against #1-ranked John “Hands Of Stone” Lineker while ONE Featherweight World Champion Thanh Le goes toe-to-toe with #3-ranked BJJ No Gi World Champion Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon.
In the meantime, watch ONE: REVOLUTION live on One Sports or One Sports+ beginning with the lead card at 6:30 p.m. Philippine Standard Time (PHT) on Friday, September 24.
The full event stream will also be available on ONE’s YouTube channel and the ONE Super App.