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MMA in Asia


Recently,  it was announced that Canadian-based MMA fighter Kultar "Black Mamba" Gill has signed a four fight contract with SFL, cementing the most prominent fighter of Indian ethnicity as a staple in the India-pased promotion.  Now SFL announces that his Canadian fans will be able to watch him on home turf as well.  SFL has formed a partnership with Canada's Fight Network and will begin airing SFL events as soon as July 19th.  

Here is the official press release from Super Fight League:

Fight Network Announces Broadcast Partnership with Indian MMA Promotion Super Fight League

Toronto – Canada’s Fight Network, the world’s premier 24/7 television channel dedicated to complete coverage of combat sports, has become the official home for Super Fight League events from India.

One of the fastest growing international mixed martial arts entities, Super Fight League has already hosted three successful events, which will be premiering Thursdays on Fight Network, beginning with SFL 1 on July 19 at 9 p.m. ET.


A personal anniversary THANK YOU to all of our supporters:

One year ago this month, Asia MMA on Facebook, the MMA in Asia website, and our twitter account were launched.  It was apparent that the great sport of MMA was about to skyrocket - both in Asian interest and international interest in the Asian market.  We realized that there was no concise and thorough source to supply information, news, and connections focusing solely on all Asian promotions and fighters. Believing that our friends, the fighters, needed this support, we jumped into the effort with both feet.
Tracy Lee, (she makes cakes too)

The result has been positively overwhelming.  Thank you to everyone who loves this sport and has supported our efforts by reading, forwarding, and interacting with our platforms.  Deep gratitude goes out to our friends, the fighters; you warriors who choose to follow such a grueling lifestyle in a sport that is the extreme of emotional and physical stress, you deserve the highest respect.  Thank you to those warriors' support network of family, coaches, and gym mates who toil behind the scenes for another's glamor during victory, and remain the pillars of strength in moments of defeat.  Thank you to the upstanding and proven promoters who build the statuses, provide the battlefields, fund the livelihoods, and protect the safety of the athletes in this incredible high-octane sport.

Thank you to our sponsors throughout the year: Jaded MMA gear, Triquest MMA, POSS compression wear and - without you, this wouldn't be possible.

It is our pleasure to announce that big things are happening with our platforms this month.  A new and vastly improved website will be launched that will provide the features and resources we first envisioned one year ago.  Our list of correspondents from all corners of Asia will grow, and our ability to supply information to all countries will grow along with it.  The website may be down at some point while we carry out the upgrades, so please bear with us.  We'll be done with our business soon.  And yes, that is a toilet cake of the Asian persuasion.  Thank you Google (and thank you - we always try to quote our sources).


The first Ultimate Fight Alliance - UFA- was held and recorded live at  Shaanxi TV Station Channel 7 with support of ShaanXi Sheng Wu and Coach Zhao Xue Jun of the Xian Sports Institute.  Eighteen MMA competitors came from all across China - from the Xian Sports Institute, Jiang Long Yun’s team from Hei Long Jiang, Ao Hai Lin’s from Beijing, Liu Guo Qi from Guang Zhou, and also fighters from Wuhan, Kunming.

The event was a hit with the audience, who were very actively cheering on the fighters.  Future details about monthly shows and international broadcast will be released shortly.  This event will give the opportunity for aspiring MMA fighters from all across China gain exposure and grow the sport within the country.

Here are the unofficial results:
9. Yang Liang defeats Sheng Er by decision, points
8. Qing Ge Le defeats Ar Ri Si Len by ground and pound
7. HaSi Ti Er defeats Guo Wen Shuo by decision, points
6. Xuan Peng Fei defeats Yu Yi Jiang by KO, Kicks
5. BaiEEr Dun Cang defeats Chen YiBiao by KO, fist position
4. Han Jian Guo defeats Cai Dong Yang by decision, points
3. Zhao Ya Fei defeats Bao Ge Bao Da by decision, points
2. Jia Er Ken defeats Bao Yin Na by ground and pound
1. Shang Zhi Fa defeats Zhong Guo Wei by triangle choke


It's not Asian, but it is MMA.  And hometown heroes Riki Fukuda and Dong Hyun Kim will be giving Asian fans more of a reason to watch.  But the fight everyone is polarized over is the Middleweight Championship - Anderson Silva versus Chael Sonnen.  Here's a variety of quotes on the matter from the pro's around Asia - and beyond.

Shinya Aoki: I think Silva will win!!

Arvind Lalwani: Going with Sonnen this time. He's f'ed up Silva's head.

Jacob Mills: Uncle Chael

Rodrigo Ribeiro Ximbica: Silva for sure!!!

Ronda Rousey: I think that Anderson Silva pissed off and healthy is going to destroy Chael.

Chatri Sityodtong: I think Silva is going to take it. Chael's takedowns won't have improved since 2 years, but Silva's takedown defense will.

Eddie Bravo: My mind's telling me Silva, but my body, my body's telling me Chael.

Bloodstain Lane: Silva is gonna get wrecked tomorrow.


Coach Zhao from the Xia'an Sports Institute has been a staple in the Chinese market for producing many of the best MMA athletes culled from his camp of literally hundreds of young Sanda fighters. From Art of War to Legend FC and RUFF, Xi'an Sports Institute has yielded top guys like Bao Li Gao, Zhao Zhi Long, Na Xun, Qing Ge Le, Dai Shuang Hai, Ao Hai Lin, and Wang Guan.  Beginning with an association with Art Of War in 2005 to produce some of the first events in China and culminating in fifty events under the UMAC banner, the Institute is now proud to announce the inaugural event for the Ultimate Fight Alliance - UFA 1.


As the month of July rounds out with two events in Taiwan - The Taiwan BJJ International and PROFighting MMA - we see the second half of the year heating up with both MMA and BJJ competitions.  In Southeast Asia, Ramadan approaches (July 18 - August 19) so the schedule takes a hiatus.  Kicking off the BJJ scene will be the BJJF Philippines event on August 11th, followed by the (in)famous SEABJJ Bangkok Open on October 27th, and the ADCC Asia-Pacific World Qualifying Trials in Manila on November 3rd.  Check out for everything BJJ in Asia.  Looking north again and reflecting back on the mixed BJJ/MMA scene in South Korea, correspondent Inseung Hwang of Blackbelt Korea shares some results from the recent Motorone Jiujitsu Competition:


In mid-June, what started out as two Korean fighters missing their flight home turned into the stuff of pure legend.  And as fortune would have it, I was right smack in the middle of it all, at home in Hong Kong.

Legend FC held their ninth event at the City of Dreams casino resort in Macau on June 16th.  I spent the following day recovering from the after party poolside at the Hard Rock Hotel.  Hair-of-the-dog and volleyball were the doctor's prescriptions.  A ferry ride back across the Pearl River Delta got me home in time for a good night's sleep ahead of a busy Monday back at work.  Or so I thought.

Fresh off a three-round battle with Taiyo Nakahara that resulted in a split decision loss, bantamweight tournament contender Jo NamJin and his corner missed their flight back to Seoul and got stuck for a few days extra in Hong Kong.  I had the pleasure of putting off more work and playing tour guide for them.   NamJin is "Crazy" in the ring, but outside of it he is a very humble, quiet, and polite guy with a great work ethic and a desire to better himself constantly.


Press release:

MMA is far from being dead in Thailand or Banned! In spite of recent news Phuket Top Team is setting up their first in house Promotion called IFN - Island Fight Night.  The event will be held on Saturday 7th July.

There will be Amateur Muay Thai, Pro Rules Boxing, Amateur MMA, and even the new fighting style TK1 fights (K-1 rules with mma gloves in the cage). In the near future as well IFN will be also putting on Pro Rules MMA Fights as well.
In house gym fights are not new to Phuket, many gyms in Phuket host in house fights for their members.  But what makes IFN different is that anyone can sign up and come to compete to gain experience from any gym in Phuket or Thailand. Also IFN will be streaming live online via UStream so anyone around the world can tune in and watch. (Please go to the IFN website or Phuket Top Team FB for more info on how to watch.)


Players from HEAT will take part in a "friendly Sino-Japanese national exchange" MMA event held in  in Shandong, China on July 25 and 26.  The matches will take place in a cage in the 3,000 capacity Dezhou City Gymnasium.
◆ 7/25: China vs Thailand; Thailand vs Brazil
■7/26: China vs Japan HEAT, Team trophy

MMA rules participants: Kiichi Strasser Kunimoto, Cobra Kai; Yoshida Koji Sone Kazuma, Shimura Dojo
Kick rules participants: Merry Sakai, Shimura Dojo; Hosoe Toshihiro


For the first time in history, the people of Inner Mongolia get to use their amazing indoor stadium to host an MMA event.  The cards at RUFF are starting to include higher levels talent each show, and despite losing the Andy Wang versus Rodrigo Caporal BJJ black belt showdown due to Wang's training injury, and now Juma "Bieke" Tuerxun versus Song YaDong battle due to Song's "documentation issues", the card is still impressive.   Given the history of Mongolian culture, their penchant for combat sports, and the popularity of MMA around the world, putting a RUFF event together in Inner Mongolia should be very well-recieved.

Most important to watch for will be undefeated "Dongbei Tiger" power striker Wang Guan versus Brazil’s BJJ black belt and Capoeira master Sando da Silva.  They are locked into the million RMB championship, and the purse is so big that no one even mentions the belt the champ takes with it!   There are all sorts of distractions when fighting, but a purse that big will throw off some guys in the competition for sure.   Only the most focused will advance to the next fight.


The latest press release:

Super Fight League is proud to announce the signing of:
Jeff Monson
Satoshi Ishii
Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou
Michael Page

Signed for 4 fight exclusive deals


(Mumbai, 24th June 2012) Super Fight League (SFL) is proud to announce the signings of: Jeff Monson, Satoshi Ishii, Rameau Sokoudjou and Michael Page for four fight exclusive deals.  India's top MMA Organsiation, Super Fight League continues to add to its impressive fighter roster with this second wave of signings, adding to its current stable of fighters which includes; Todd Duffee, James Thompson, Paul Kelly, Trevor Prangley and Professor X.

Jeff Monson

Fighting out of American Top Team, UFC Heavyweight Title Challenger and vet of DREAM, PRIDE and Strikeforce Jeff 'the Snowman' Monson (46 - 13- 1) is considered one of the world's top grapplers. Two-time Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Champion and No Gi Brazilian Jiu Jitsu World Champion, Monson also holds the Heavyweight titles in the International Sport Karate Association and the Strength & Honor Championship. A BJJ Blackbelt and submission artist, Monson also holds a Masters Degree in Psychology.

With victories over Roy Nelson, Sergei Kharitonov, Mark Kerr and Ricco Rodriguez, Monson is an impressive addition to the SFL Heavyweight division.  SFL CEO Ken Pavia said: 'Jeff has achieved a high level of success fighting all over the world. We are very excited to add him to our roster and test him in our elite HW division. He is always entertaining and is one of the true personalities of the sport."


Sports: athletic, enthusiastic, exciting, emotional, polarizing. Sports is also big business. We recognize and value teams competing on an international level that reflect our social, economic, and regional ideals and preferences. From the team and the coach on down through the sponsors, and ultimately the players, we are consumed by what makes the machine run effectively and successfully. We read about it, we watch it, and we bet on it.

Combat sports introduce another level of obsession into the sporting compendium. These are single individuals competing against one another, therefore we inject more of our own emotions, desires and empathies into identifying with these warriors because we intrinsically see ourselves in the arena. We celebrate their wins or deeply mourn their losses as our own.

Yet be it EuroCup teams or ONE FC fighters, there is a unifying element that all athletes need to succeed: a good coach.

In Asia, the sport of MMA is most well-developed in Japan where the concept of a good coach's directive of team training is not only accepted but imperative. Many great gyms have fostered athletes able to compete on an international level because of the eye and guidance of their coach. Reaching further across Asia, there is an innovator who understands the dynamic and has been willing to chance it outside the confines of the 'safe' Japanese market.

He is the inimitable Chatri Sityodtong.

Courtesy Daniel Koh


Press release:

Complete RUFF 4 Fight Card Released

Having already announced the main events for the upcoming RUFF 4 on Saturday, June 30 at Hohhot’s Inner Mongolia Indoor Stadium, the Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation (RUFF) is now releasing the complete fight card for this second fight in the year-long Super Fight series.

In addition to the previously-announced featherweight matchup between Macau-based Brazilian Sandro da Silva and Xi’An Sports University’s Wang Guan, the lightweight battle between BJJ black belts Rodrigo Caporal and Andy Wang, and the highly-anticipated rematch between bantamweights Irshaad Sayed and Ayideng Jumayi, the RUFF 4card for will feature eight more fights featuring some of China’s top MMA fighters.

Bantamweight Jumabieke Tuerxun will continue his march toward the 2013 Super Fight, putting his undefeated record on the line against RUFF newcomer and BJJ blue belt Song YaDong, while lightweight Zhang LiPeng looks to bounce back from a majority decision loss at RUFF 3 in his showdown with Muay Thai specialist Arthit “A Ting” Hanchana.


ROAD FC 008.FINAL4 - Bitter Rivals
Result (경기결과)

7th bout : Kyunh-ho Kang vs. Andrew Leone
(Kyung-ho Kang won by Rear-Naked Choke / Round 2)

6th bout : Denis Kang vs. Hye-seok Son
(Denis Kang won by TKO / Round 1)

5th bout : Jong-dae Kim vs. Bob Sapp
(Jong-dae Kim won by TKO / Round 2)

4th bout : Doo-won Seo vs. Toru Harai
(Doo-won Seo won by Decision / Round 3)

3rd bout : Soo-chul Kim vs. Sato Shoko
(Soo-chul Kim won by TKO / Extra Round 1)

2nd bout : Kyung-ho Kang vs. Je-hoon Moon
(Kyung-ho Kang won by Rear-Naked Choke / Round 3)

1st bout : Andrew Leone vs. Min-jong Song
(Andrew Leone won by Decision / Round 3)



Top Chinese welterweight Li Jingliang holds off Australian Dan Pauling in co-main event

Macau, June 16, 2012 (Saturday) — A lively capacity crowd at City of Dreams witnessed top-ranked Japanese fighter Koji Ando defeat Australian brawler Rob Hill by judges’ decision after three rounds in the main event of City of Dreams exclusively presents Legend 9.  Koji has now won five of his last six fights. With this win, Ando has earned the right to face reigning champion Jadamba Narantungalag for the Legend Lightweight Title at Legend 11.

“I’ve got the title in my sights,” said Ando. “I’m looking forward to proving that I have what it takes to beat Jadamba!”


After the weigh ins, we had the chance to catch up with a few of the Korean and Chinese fighters on the card.  Here are a few of their thoughts ahead of Legend FC 9.


How do you feel to be back fighting in Legend FC?

First, I'm so happy because I'm back.  I trained so much.  I'm glad to show my ability.

What do you think about your opponent (Rob Lisita)?

My opponent is strong, but his skill is not specific.  So I have a way to defeat him.

After coming back from a long lay off, how was your weight cut?

I feel dizzy, and it was hard to cut.  I had no match for one year.  But I want to keep my promise.

What do you think about your opponent's missing weight?

I'm disappointed because as a professional, he didn't keep his promise.  But I think he will succeed.

How do you think the fight will finish?

Whatever.  But it will end in the second round.  I won't let it go to the third.


Legend FC 9 weigh ins are over and out of 20 fighters, 8 did NOT make weight on the first go.  After 2 hours, only co-main event Li Jingliang didn't drop the needed amount, ending up 200g over and giving 20% of his purse to Dan Pauling.  

Legend FC Commentator Vaughn "Blud" Anderson was on hand and doing his preliminary interviews.  He shares the fighters' last-minute looks at their fight camps, opponents and how they see tomorrow's action going down.

Muhammed Hanif Bin Zainal 66.34 versus Diego Cuenca 66.32

Bin Zainal is the Predator.  Won his first gold medal in TKD at 5.  Started MMA because of video games.  Trains at Muayfit.  Doesn’t respect Diego’s striking.

Diego Cuenca said, "I will push the pace in this fight.  I am equally dangerous on the feet and the ground."  He won BJ Penn's contest, won a trip to Hawaii, trained for 6 weeks, fought a Hawaiian in amateur MMA and won, and then didn't get the video.  "MMA is therapy for me," Diego says, "It's much better to punch a bag or person than a clock."  Seven years of BJJ.


With Legend FC 9 right around the corner on June 16th in Macau at City Of Dreams, Commentator Vaughn 'Blud' Anderson (and 16-1 pro MMA fighter, coach, jiujitsu fiend, world traveler, man-in-the-know and all around badass) is studying up on the next card.  Here's his look at the fighters and how he sees the bouts going down.  You won't get a better understanding of the action, unless your ringside.

Koji Ando vs. Rob Hill

This is Hill’s second fight during his ‘year off to study accounting’ (LOL!). Not sure how that idea EVER entered his head, but glad he has come to his senses and is back pulling off bonus-winning performances. The Aussie’s weird tricks look totally fluke at times, but he insures they are all just too technical for me to comprehend- either way, they work and win for him.

Ando looks huge for 70 kgs and held his own on the feet with KO sensation Wang Guan for the full 15 minutes! Then he came back and pulled off a beautiful sub-of-the-night triangle transitioned from back mount. He has earned his spot across from Hill.

Rob leaving the ring with bonuses is more common than not now. But, just like in video games, the further you get in Legend, the scarier your challenges become. Ando is the monster on this level and he will put Hill’s funky escapes to the test. Both recent sub-of-the-night winners, both excellent strikers- this could easily be one of the best fights ever.


The ONE Asia MMA Summit held from June 1st through 3rd, 2012, presented an opportunity for promoters, sponsors, gyms, and media from around the Austral-Asian region to network and collaborate on the growth of MMA in Asia.  ONE Fighting Championship hosted approximately 150 people at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.   Speakers from across the industry were organized into panels and break out sessions to cover a variety of important issues.  On Day 2 of the Summit, these panel sessions commenced with an introduction by ONE FC CEO Victor Cui.  This article focuses only on the first panel session as the event was quite comprehensive and informative; future columns will detail the remaining topics.


Chatri Sityodtong, CEO of Evolve MMA

The frog under the coconut shell digs his way out and sees the world.

Chatri has become a name synonymous with MMA in Asia.  He's a highly successful businessman who has turned his focus to MMA, developing one of the most recognized brands in Evolve MMA and assembling a stellar fight team.  Chatri understands that the future does not need to be observed, but driven.  The core of his speech was not 'if' MMA in Asia will succeed but 'how' it will.  Starting out with a bang, he produced very simple powerpoint slides that read:

"How big will MMA be in Asia?  VERY BIG."


SHANGHAI, June 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --  The Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation (RUFF) continues to establish itself as a top power in the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) world, signing a deal with U.S.-based Excel Sports Management to handle all sponsorship sales and marketing.

Through an increased presence on television and comprehensive print and online campaigns, RUFF aims to reach well over 600 million Chinese consumers by summer 2012. By enlisting Excel Sports Management to lead its corporate consulting and rights representation, RUFF ensures it will be well positioned to form valuable partnerships during this rapid expansion.

"We are thrilled to work with such an elite agency," commented RUFF co-founder Saul Rajsky. "Excel's industry experience and global reach make them ideal partners as we engage this vast new audience and introduce them to our exhilarating product."

Excel Sports Management, which represents some of the most respected and talented athletes in professional sports, including Tiger Woods, Derek Jeter and Blake Griffin, views RUFF as a future cornerstone of televised sports entertainment in China. RUFF's unparalleled access to the nation's untapped MMA market will stimulate growth surpassing the sport's impressive rise in the United States.


Just released for the next card:

Sandro da Silva versus Wang Guan
Rodrigo Caporal versus Andy Wang
Irshaad Sayed versus Ayideng Jumayi

RUFF 4 set for Inner Mongolia, road to Super Fight continues

The Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation (RUFF) will return to action with RUFF 4 on Saturday, June 30th, when China’s top Mixed Martials Arts (MMA) fighters square off at Hohhot’s Inner Mongolia Indoor Stadium.
The second event in RUFF’s year-long Super Fight series, RUFF 4 will feature many of RUFF’s top fighters, along with a new crop of contenders, all of whom will vie for the chance to become China’s first MMA National Champion.


ONE   It represents a single entity, sometimes referred to as unity.

ASIA   Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent. It covers 30% of the Earth's land area and hosts 60% of the world's current human population. Given its size and diversity, Asia "is more a cultural concept" incorporating diverse regions and peoples than a homogeneous physical entity. - Wikipedia

MMA   Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a full contact combat sport that allows the use of both striking and grappling techniques, both standing and on the ground. The roots of modern mixed martial arts can be traced back to the ancient Olympics. - Wikipedia

SUMMIT   1. The highest point or part; the top.  2. The highest level or degree that can be attained.  3. a. The highest level, as of government officials.  b. A conference or meeting of high-level leaders, usually called to shape a program of action

The words above each symbolize powerful concepts.  When placed together, they galvanize an entire community into action.  The ONE Asia MMA Summit, held in Singapore over the weekend of June 1st through 3rd, 2012, brought approximately 150 people from around the Austral-Asian region together to educate, collaborate, elevate, and shape the future of the sport.  It was a remarkable historic achievement.

The event was sponsored and hosted by ONE Fighting Championship, whose increasing star power attraction and aggressively forecast international schedule have made it the behemoth of MMA in Asia.  Aside from the first ever MMA summit in Asia, ONE FC aims to be the first and only promotion to create and manage a cross-promotional network, an exclusive gym network, and an official fighter-sharing collaboration.  It is neither slowly nor conservatively approaching these objectives - ONE FC is doing it BIG.  Owner and CEO Victor Cui stated, "I have no doubt that in the next few years, MMA will be a household word everywhere in Asia."  That's big.  In the words of panelist and industry-driver Chatri Sityodtong, CEO of Evolve MMA,
"How big?  VERY BIG."


ONE FC's impending MMA Summit will bring together a major representation of industry professionals from across Asia.  One of the topics of discussion will be "Developing a Professional Fight Team".  Two of the three of the panelists announced for this topic are Heath Sims of Evolve MMA and Boyd Clarke of Phuket Top Team.  The third is Mark Sangiao of Team Lakay.

Team Lakay is one of the most recognized, decorated, consistent, and humble MMA teams in all of Asia.  Coach Mark has actively developed his stable of fighters since 2006.  The Lakay trademark red satin shorts his fighters wear are now equally recognized and respected.   Mark's love of and dedication to the development of combat sports have made a huge contribution to the sport of MMA in Asia.  These contributions - bother personally and through his stable of 15 pro and 50 amateur fighters - makes Coach Mark an ideal candidate to speak on the topic of developing a professional fight team.

The following article was written by Ofelia Empian and published in the Baguio Chronicle, issue October 30-November 5, 2011 and online here.

Champions are not born. They are made. 



ONE FC to hold massive invitation-only event this weekend

Ft. Lauderdale, Florida (USA): It was recently announced that Apex Sports Agency (ASA) CEO Jason Chambers is slated to host ONE Asia Summit 2012, which is scheduled for this weekend, June 1, 2012 through June 3, 2012, at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. Created and promoted by ONE FC, the largest MMA promotion in Asia, the Summit is garnering a significant amount of buzz in the world of mixed martial arts.

Chambers will serve as the Master of Ceremonies, and will participate in the sessions as a panel moderator. In addition, he will be in charge of facilitating the Q&A sessions. Asia’s top MMA promotions, gyms, sponsors, and media outlets will be represented at the Summit, which is designed to be a clearinghouse that will help promote networking and expansion opportunities for all those involved. With ONE FC at the helm, the event has drawn the interest and attention of MMA pundits across the world.


In the lead up to the coming weekend's ONE FC Summit, we will be posting various articles on the topics that will be discussed at the summit. Here is an extremely in-depth article on MMA sponsorships: how the sponsors think, how the deals operate, and what a fighter can expect. This piece, by Ben Fowlkes, was published on MMAFighting here.

The Truth About Fighters and Sponsors

To the fan, it's just logos. It's background scenery, hardly worth noticing.

It's a shirt some fighter wears to the cage and then struggles to pull back on to his sweaty torso in time for the post-fight interview. It's a banner his cornermen unfurl behind him during the pre-fight introductions. It's a website on the seat of his shorts.

You see it, even if you never think about it. But because you see it, because you're watching, fighters are getting paid. They might make anywhere from a couple grand that's barely worth mentioning after their manager takes a 20 percent cut, to hundreds of thousands of dollars on an endorsement deal that will change their lives forever.

For many fighters, sponsor money means everything. It's the difference between prospering and just getting by. It's something they talk about among themselves, but rarely in public. It's the hidden undercurrent of the MMA economy.


The coming weekend of June 1st, 2012 heralds what could be the most influential event for MMA in Asia... ever.  Under the organization and sponsorship of ONE Fighting Championship, a Summit will be held at Marina Bay Resort in Singapore to bring together a broad spectrum of professionals in the industry to explore, discuss, and promote the growth of MMA.  Panels consisting of leading professionals will provide insights and education across many facets of the MMA sports industry.  

Some of the sessions will feature prominent long-time figures on the MMA scene such as Bubbles Aguilar of the URCC, Chatri Sityodtong of Evolve MMA, Anthony Lim of Fairtex Group, and Matt Hume, world-renowned MMA fighter, coach, promoter, and official.  They will speak about what they see to be the future of MMA in Asia, developing the safety of the sport alongside its remarkable growth, and maintaining a finger on the pulse of what drives it: the fans.

There will be further educational panels on sponsorships, media, developing a fight team, and opportunities for gyms.  These will target the needs of gyms, coaches, and fighters and provide much needed background information on and support for achieving future success.  It will be a lot of information to cram into a very short timeframe, so auditors are encouraged to be eager and learn as much of the information presented as possible.  Sharpen your pencils, guys.  And remember, this weekend is all about absorbing the stuff that is flying at you - not deflecting it!

The Lead Ups

Each day this week, will post an article pertaining to one of the topics on the Summit agenda.  This will provide readers with background on issues that will be covered, and prepare auditors to  receive the information flying at them.  

An Announcement and a Personal Thank You

It is my pleasure to announce that the ONE FC Summit will provide a breakout session to explore the development of an international amateur MMA league.  ONE FC's founder Victor Cui deserves commendation for seeing the need for amateur athletics, providing a platform at the Summit to discuss it, and for supporting its development.  Additionally, I am humbled to have been chosen as a co-facilitator for this break out session, and I am eager to speak face to face with all of you whom have expressed a deep desire to get amateur MMA developed throughout Asia.  Together, we are going to accomplish something AMAZING! - Lee Li


When I first saw the name "Kim Hock" announced as a match on the ONE FC 3 card as a rookie, I thought "Who the heck is this guy?"  Apparently I said it out loud, because my friend Vaughn Anderson answered.  "Oh, I trained with him some at Juggernaut Fight Club in Singapore.  He's a boxer.  That kid is tough - he is strong."  Aside from the fact that Blud knows practically everyone in MMA from Beijing to Tasmania, he possesses an excellent eye for talent and ability.  So I decided to keep my own eyes on this "Kim Hock" kid.

I found out that he does indeed have some sharp boxing skills, attested to by the fact that he took gold at the Singapore National Boxing Championships in 2010 and again in '11, plus the gold in the Invitational Boxing Championship the same year, after dropping a weight class.

Check out this video of one of Quek's amateur fights that showcases this self-proclaimed "ex-fat kid's" mean left hook, laser-site focus, and inability to concede to "backing up".  A 21-year old with this much punching power is an exciting prospect to look out for in the future.

In the same busy year of winning two boxing golds, Kim Hock made his foray into MMA at the Naksu amateur MMA competitions in Thailand in 2011, winning a Grand Prix by TKO.  The videos of his fights in Naksu show his limited grappling knowledge yet sharp self-preservation instincts, and a devastating grasp of ground and pound.  After watching the Naksu video below, then learning that he started MMA competitions after only six weeks of MMA training, I completely forgave him for getting mounted.  The Thai crowd goes absolutely mad for his striking.  It's such a shame that shortsighted bureaucracy has banned MMA in that combat-loving country.


Top Chinese welterweight Li Jingliang to face Australian Dan Pauling in co-main event

Macau, May 17, 2012 (Thursday) — Top-ranked Japanese fighter Koji Ando will face Australian brawler Rob Hill at City of Dreams exclusively presents Legend Fighting Championship 9 on Saturday, June 16, 2012, at City of Dreams, Cotai, Macau. This is a critical match-up for both men as the winner will fight reigning champion Jadamba Narantungalag for the Legend Lightweight Title.

Koji (1-1 Legend, 6-3-2 overall) has won four of his last five fights including a dramatic “Submission of the Night” victory over Damien Brown at Legend 7. Always entertaining fan favorite and Australian knockout artist Rob Hill (2-2 Legend, 11-5-1 overall) will aim to derail Ando’s title hopes. Hill is coming off his own “Submission of the Night” performance against Yusuke Kasuya at Legend 8 and will be looking for another statement victory en route to a title shot. selects FightMetric for Data Provider

Our newest sponsor,, is a Shanghai start up introducing a brand new concept in the world of MMA: an application that lets fans score fights live.  The platform will also be used in Big John McCarthy's COMMAND officials course.  As one of hopefully many press releases to come regarding the launch of this exciting new app, here is the most recent information concerning their selection of FightMetric:

iJudgeFights ( is pleased to announce that we have selected FightMetric as our fight data provider of choice.
Shanghai,China- (May 15th, 2012)

iJudgeFights .com allows fans to score fights live, round by round, anywhere in the world and compare their scores with other fans and the real judges. One of the goals of is to improve judging in MMA through education and analysis.

“When fans boo a decision it’s either because they see that the judges got it wrong, or the judges got it right and the fans don’t understand why. Our job is to close the gap in understanding by seeing how and why fans AND judges score fights differently. It’s also a lot of fun!” said Jordan Morley, Co-Founder and CEO of


Outsiders at Outsider circa 2010
The month of MMAy is all about BJJ this year.  Although the MMA scene is sparse this month, it started off with a bang via two of the craziest promotions in Asia.  Super Fight League - the promotion gaining more and more notoriety for its Bollywood production and Baroni's color commentating - saw its sophomore outing in India.  And today was another RINGS Outsiders event in Japan, a promotion started by Akira Maeda to give society's "outsiders" a ring to duke it out in, rather than the streets.  More than the listed bouts can occur between opposing camps all tattooed and smoking ringside.

Aside from the pro events, the amateur MMA scene is starting to kick off across Asia in a big way.  MMA Academy in will hold their second amateur competition on May 19th in San Perdro, Philippines.  Taiwan's Shen Wu will hold their second as well at the end of the month on the 26th. Impakt Singapore will also hold an in-house competition on the same day.  Then it's back to the Philippines as One Mindanao announces amateur tryouts for the Fury Fight League on May 27th.

The lull in professional events means that more of Asia's Brazilian Jiu Jitsu-based MMA fighters can be seen participating in the very active BJJ competition month of May.  Starting off the calendar was the Copa de Hong Kong at the very beginning of the month.  Today saw the second day of competition at the Pan Asian tournament in the Philippines.  Finally, the next installment of the China Open will take place in Shanghai on May 19th.  BJJ is definitely growing around Asia!  And of course, there was the live streamed


The Copa de Hong Kong took place on the first day of May.  About 150 competitors entered from all across Asia - China, Taiwan, Singapore, Japan, the Philippines.  Vincent Sit of POSS Performance Apparel (check out Vaughn Anderson's last fight for a look at their compression spats) took some great pictures of the action and posted in a Facebook album here.  Our own album can be found on Facebook as well.  Adrian Wong of JADED MMA traded his own MMA shorts for his first competition in the kimono.

Terrence Chan, pro poker player and now pro MMA fighter on Legend FC, also donned a gi.

And Big Dean Thompson dons one of his own STORM kimonos to battle it out in the purple division.

Rodrigo Caporal ran the black belt divisions (again) in preparation for the Pan Asians, and probably as a warm up for his next MMA fight in RUFF.  For the full results, see this link on BJJ Asia.


Jerry Legaspi, URCC and PXC veteran, sported three gold medals for his time on the mats.

Black belt Leandro Issa has a fight camp to consider for his battle against fellow black belt Masakazu Imanari in Next month's ONE FC, but he still took time out to coach and support his Evolve MMA team.

When his opponent pulled out, Ray Elbe saw his first match against Caporal.  As Ray stated on his blog following the match:

"Winning the first round bye I was “awarded” a silver medal as a contestant prize. Would have been nice to have had a few matches before Caporal, however the real reward here is the experienced gained from competing and the training I put towards preparing for the event…I’m better tomorrow because of today."

As the results get posted, check back here for updates.


One of the Superfights was between to guys who had just run the rounds giving seminars throughout Asia, so it was a treat to see them meet each other in this match.  Jeff Glover versus Caio Terra!

And everybody already knows Nick Diaz was a no-show against Braulio Estima.  Here's what Braulio had to say on his Twitter account here:

"Unfortunately the so expected super fight Estima vs Diaz didn't happened. I'm very sad as I did everything possible for it to happen. I weighed in at 180lbs this morning at 10 am as agreed and asked to see nicks weighing too but I was informed by Cesar his Coach that he was 180lbs in the previous night and that he ate and is over 180lbs even though I just let it go an still showed up to fight. What pisses me off the most is that he was telling he was going to give his purse to charity for the childrens hospital and than don't show up. What kind of person is that. Shame. Ps. I'm sorry for all the ones who stayed up to watch this fight but I'm sure the prelims fights was amazing. Thank u all for the support aways."


Six weeks out, ONE FC is beginning to announce matches that will make up their freshman debut in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur on June 23rd.  Originally scheduled for late April, then May, the date was pushed back to June due to elections and logistics.

First bout announced:
Babalu Sobral (36-9) versus Tatsuya Mizuno (11-7)

ONE FC is beginning to flesh out the light heavyweight division with some remarkable talent.  Following a highly anticipated clash between Melvin Manhoef and Yoshiyuki Nakanishi that ended up a no-contest due to mutually received leg cuts, here come two more apt entries.