When ONE Championship broke ground in the Philippines in 2012, one team in the country stood out among the rest.
Team Lakay has been the consistent driving force of the nation when it comes to mixed martial arts, producing five World Champions since storming the ONE Circle.
But what exactly makes this team so special? The answer is not really that complicated.
“Basically, it’s all about teamwork really,” Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang said.
“The bond of the team is really different. As a team, we help each other not just to be better athletes, but better individuals as well.”
Adiwang, who joined the team in 2017, attributes his recent success in ONE Warrior Series – and later the ONE main roster – to just being with the team.
Basically one of the newest members of the team, “Thunder Kid” explained how working with the likes of Eduard “Landslide” Folayang and Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, among others, helped him achieve new heights.
“I think you can say that, joining the team is one of the major factors in me boosting my career,” Adiwang said.
“Working with them every day is an honor for me. You get to train with World Champions, people who have reached the top, and you’ll certainly get pulled up and motivated to be better.”
Reigning ONE Strawweight World Champion Joshua “The Passion” Pacio agrees with Adiwang’s assessment.
The 24-year-old shared that their bond goes way beyond martial arts. They share the same interests outside of the sport and grown fond of each other’s respective families.
“The brotherhood and the familial bond is there,” Pacio said.
“When one loses, we make sure to pick it up. Some teams they don’t, they even start to look down on you, but here, there’s no one left behind.”
And while their run in The Home Of Martial Arts is far from perfect, bouncing back from such setbacks is made easier by simply being on the team.
“Everything is attributed to experience. We always learned from [setbacks],” Pacio said.
“This team has been through ups and downs, and we make sure to always put things in perspective and sort things out as a team.”
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