Undisputed: Team Lakay Showed Us They’re the Best Team in Asia

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Team Lakay Now has Three ONE World Champions in Their Roster

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One night after Team Lakay bagged four awards in ONE Championship’s Global Martial Arts Awards, Kevin Belingon outworked Bibiano Fernandes to become the new undisputed ONE bantamweight world champion. Winning by split decision, he joins Lakay teammates Geje Eustaquio and Joshua Pacio to hold three belts in Asia’s largest mixed martial arts organization. And, two weeks from now, Eduard Folayang has the opportunity to reclaim his belt and make it four out of the 11 available belts strapped around a Lakay’s waist.

ONE Championship was Damn Right in Giving Mark Sangiao Coach of the Year

The main event at ONE: Heart of a Lion was nothing short of a Fight of the Year candidate. Bibiano Fernandes came out to win, bringing the fight to Kevin Belingon with his trademark grappling, working to finish the fight with several submission attempts. On the other hand, as expected Belingon did his best work on the feet, punishing Fernandes with body kicks and combinations that left marks on the former bantamweight king’s face as the decision was read. Easily, Bibiano won Round 3, while Belingon took Round 5. The rest of the rounds, we could argue ’til kingdom come.

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Most people’s light bulb memory of Kevin Belingon was his flash knockout of David Aranda at ONE: Moment of Truth. Personally, Kevin Belingon’s loss to Masakatsu Ueda is the memory I always refer to pertaining to ‘The Silencer’. Sure, he lost that bout, but it was an excellent performance as he used all his available tools to keep the Japanese grappling stalwart at bay. My favorite was his strategy of timing a knee whenever Ueda would dive for a takedown.
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Matches to Make After UFC 187

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Stepping Into Joe Silva’s Shoes

 

Traditionally, the UFC produces one of its four best cards during Memorial Day Weekend. This year’s UFC 187 did not disappoint! Even with the Jon Jones situation and Khabib Nurmagomedov getting injured, the main card in particular served up stellar performances from Joseph Benavidez, Andre Arlovski, Donald Cerrone, Chris Weidman, and Daniel Cormier. Also, Travis Browne, Vitor Belfort, and Anthony Johnson gave us intense moments to cheer or bite our nails for, depending on where you placed your bet.

With champions and contenders populating the fight card, it’s but natural that experts and fight fans began speculating about potential matches for the victors (and losers) moments after the event concluded. So what are the matches that would make sense in the near future?

John Dodson vs. Demetrious Johnson 2

Sidelined by an ACL injury, Dodson knew that he had to show the world that he was ready for another shot at the title. While unable to vanquish his foe in the usual clobber-knocker style we’ve known him for, John fought hard to earn a unanimous decision victory against former Bellator bantamweight champion Zach Makovsky.

Crediting ring rust for his uninspired showing, Dodson’s lightning fast speed and crisp technique brimmed nonetheless in this fight. “The Magician” is now on a three-fight win streak and is the clear choice to face the champion again.

Dodson Johnson

Two years ago, Dodson gave Demetrious Johnson the fight of his life during their first meeting. Since then, “Mighty Mouse” has practically wiped out his entire division, and Dodson with his dynamite hands is the only foreseeable threat to DJ’s title reign.

Joseph Benavidez vs. Henry Cejudo

Joseph Benavidez’s spot in the flyweight division is a very confusing and frustrating place to be in. He has already lost to the champion twice, but he still beats everyone else in the division. He’s practically a gatekeeper in one of the shallowest divisions in the UFC. Given his peculiar situation, he’ll probably serve as the litmus test for all would-be contenders.

This match makes a lot of sense because it’s obvious the UFC is setting up Henry Cejudo to get a title shot in the near future. As you may know, Henry Cejudo is an Olympic gold medalist in wrestling. And what better way to test that Olympic-level wrestling than to pit him against a beast like Benavidez.
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After UFC 187 win, is title rematch next for Filipino-American John Dodson?

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A Look at the UFC Flyweight Division’s Top 10

 

The Ultimate Fighter Season 14 bantamweight winner, and current number-one ranked flyweight contender John Dodson came back from a knee injury to fight close friend and fellow top 10 flyweight Zach Makovsky at UFC 187.

Dodson did just enough to take the decision win, with 29-28 on all three judges’ scorecards. It was not a fight with the usual frenetic action fans have come to expect from “The Magician”, but Dodson explained that he had some ring rust after almost a year on the sidelines, and still believes he should be the next one to challenge for Demetrious Johnson’s flyweight title.

Johnson and Dodson have met in the Octagon before, with Johnson outpointing the challenger 48-47, 49-46, and 48-47 back in January 2013.

The son of an African-American father and Filipino-American mother, Dodson first established his presence in the UFC by scoring a TKO over T.J. Dillashaw to win his season of The Ultimate Fighter, a feat made even more impressive considering the fact that Dillashaw is currently the UFC bantamweight champion.

Dodson then promptly dropped down to flyweight, where he established himself as one of the most powerful strikers in the division. His flyweight record now stands at 5-1, his lone loss to the champion.

Even with his latest win being an unexciting and contentious one, Dodson is still arguably the most viable title challenger when you compare him to the rest of the top 10 UFC flyweights:
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