History was made at ONE Fight Night 16: Haggerty vs. Andrade on Prime Video when a pair of reigning ONE World Champions squared off for two-sport supremacy and an inaugural king was crowned in the submission grappling ranks.
However, that was just the cherry on top of the martial arts sundae in U.S. primetime last Friday, November 3.
Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok once again hosted a lineup of unforgettable combat sports action. With so much at stake, the athletes gave everything they had and left every ounce of energy on the canvas.
Following the exciting 10-bout card, here are five major takeaways from ONE Fight Night 16.
Jonathan Haggerty Is Bantamweight’s Best Striker
The ONE Bantamweight Kickboxing World Title belt officially has a new home. It will be placed alongside the ONE Bantamweight Muay Thai World Title strap on Jonathan Haggerty‘s mantle following his highlight-reel win over Fabricio Andrade in the main event.
After a competitive first round, Haggerty stunned the reigning ONE Bantamweight MMA World Champion with a quick left high kick. Sensing a finish was near, the British superstar blitzed Andrade until the job was done.
It was a commanding performance from “The General,” who left no doubt that he’s the best bantamweight striker in the world right now – and one of the best pound-for-pound. But could he take aim at Andrade’s MMA title, as well?
Being comfortable in 4-ounce gloves and training in MMA since his youth, Haggerty could be even more deadly in a rematch under the all-around rule set if his grappling can hold up.
Tye Ruotolo Is A Top Pound-For-Pound Grappler
Over the course of 10 minutes, Ruotolo showcased his dynamic and dangerous submission game with multiple catches from a variety of positions. The 20-year-old BJJ superstar nearly locked up an arm-in guillotine, a D’Arce choke, and an armbar.
All Abdulkadirov could do was defend one-way traffic from the Atos virtuoso. It made for an easy call from the judges, who were unanimous in their decision for the American.
With his fifth straight victory in ONE, Ruotolo claimed 26 pounds of gold and more validation that he is one of the best pound-for-pound grapplers on the planet.
Halil Amir Is A True Lightweight MMA World Title Threat
After two victories under the bright lights of ONE Championship, Halil Amir propelled himself to the #4 contender spot in the lightweight MMA division. Following his first-round TKO of Ahmed Mujtaba on Friday, the Turkish star is proving he’s ready to contend for the belt.
The matchup with Mujtaba went a long way in showing how Amir handles adversity. The Pakistani finisher threatened with multiple submissions, but Amir defended and responded when he was able to escape.
Then in the closing moments of the first frame, fans saw why the 29-year-old is known as “No Mercy” – as he showed none to Mujtaba. After Amir hammered away until the bell sounded, his opponent remained on his stool between rounds, forcing referee Herb Dean to call off the bout.
The Amir Team representative upped his professional MMA record to 10-0 with nine finishes and made his case for a chance at gold in 2024.
Ben Tynan Announces Arrival In Heavyweight MMA Division
“Mighty Warrior” Kang Ji Won has put together an impressive run in ONE, including stoppage wins over top-tier opponents, but Ben “Vanilla Thunder” Tynan had no concerns that his name would be added to the South Korean’s list.
That confidence was evident early, as Tynan quickly took Kang down to the canvas and controlled the match from top position. The former NCAA Division I wrestler then continued that trend in the second round.
To his credit, Kang defended well over the first 10 minutes of the heavyweight MMA battle. But after another takedown in the third round, his defense finally opened and gave “Vanilla Thunder” his chance to extend his 100 percent finishing rate with an arm-triangle choke.
With an accomplished wrestling background, a perfect MMA record, and a dominant ONE debut, Tynan has quickly put himself on the radar to become a future World Title threat in the weight class.
Battle-Hardened Veterans Upset Prodigies
Rising stars Zhang Peimian and Anna “Supergirl” Jaroonsak wanted to show out in U.S. primetime. Instead, they found that veterans Rui Botelho and Cristina Morales were unwilling to be their stepping stones.
In the first three minutes of his strawweight kickboxing battle, “Fighting Rooster” looked sharp with an array of offense. However, Botelho’s veteran savvy saw him turn the page in the second to assume control before turning up the heat on his 20-year-old Chinese foe in the final frame.
Meanwhile, Morales wasted no time in her atomweight kickboxing meeting with “Supergirl.”
The three-time Kickboxing World Champion pressured from the outset and battered her 19-year-old opponent with fierce combinations until the Thai phenom showed no more interest in taking the punishment.
There was no changing of the guard on this day, as Botelho and Morales turned away the two bright prodigies and stood firm at their posts.