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Top-notch mixed martial arts action aired on S+A

Top-notch mixed martial arts action aired on S+A.....»»

Category: sportsSource: thestandard thestandardJan 12th, 2017

ONE Championship partners with gaming powerhouse

A new partnership has been forged between Predator Philippines and ONE Championship to bring Philippine gaming to new heights. Set at High Grounds Café, an other-worldly gaming café decked out in Predator G1 and G3 gaming units, Predator Philippines and ONE Championship challenged Filipino gamers to prepare for modern combat. “Gaming is so much more than cool graphics and great sound effects – it’s about every gamer transforming into their characters and conquering new worlds in any galaxy and in any battle,” said Ray Gozon, Predator Philippines Senior Marketing Manager. “Serious gamers have intense skill, focus, and fury if they are to destroy their enemies. This is why ONE Championship is the perfect partner for us – ONE Championship fights and fighters embody the intensity that our gamers experience on Predator machines.” With an audience of Philippine media and gaming fanatics, Predator Philippines presented the Predator 21 X, a 21-inch gaming laptop with a curved screen that makes for fluid gaming. This powerful machine enables gamers to completely immerse themselves in the future of gaming with G-SYNC technology – it lets gamers see all their opponent’s movements without delay so they can respond swiftly and decisively to any threat. With custom-engineered five-fan cooling, top-of-line power for the fastest gaming in the world, HiFi quality sound, and Cherry MX keyboard for advanced controls with PredatorSense, the Predator 21 X is the ultimate weapon to annihilate any opponent. Two powerplugs-in for two 330-watt bricks allow anyone with this weapon to game hard for as long has he can survive. “Predator doesn’t only CONQUER NEW WORLDS of gaming, but it CONQUERS NEW WORLDS of gamers themselves,” said Gozon. “It’s all about making the experience as real as possible.” Bringing the experience of combat to life are ONE Heavyweight World Champion Brandon “The Truth” Vera and ONE Championship VP & MMA Legend Rich “Ace” Franklin with a thrilling demonstration of the basics of MMA fighting. They then went head-to-head with a team of media and Predator fans for a round of Overwatch, putting their combat skills to the test in the world of PC gaming. 'Our objective is to create as much excitement and public exposure as possible for our partners as ONE Championship continues to extend the boundaries of mixed martial arts (MMA) in Asia by maximizing our reach to fans of the sport. The growth of MMA is one of the key elements in helping our partners gain endless opportunities,” said ONE Championship CEO, Victor Cui. “We are thrilled to be in partnership with Predator this year as ONE Championship brings its unique brand of MMA action to an MMA-adulating country like the Philippines for the tenth time. Predator is a world-class brand and just like ONE Championship, it aims to bring no less than the best to its fans and followers. Together with Predator, we will serve top-notch entertainment and an unforgettable night of action to our loyal fans on April 21st.' Predator is the official partner of ONE: KINGS OF DESTINY happening on April 21. Predator will be sponsoring one of the main card fights of the day, which is the fight right before the title fight of Folayang and Ting battle for the ONE Lightweight World Championship. The winner of this main card fight will receive the ultimate gaming laptop, the Predator 21 X, helping this fighter to conquer not only the ring but any world he chooses through Predator. Predator is also expected to create a whole spectacle during the match as they reveal the new brand ambassador for Predator Philippines. “On the outside, MMA is extremely physical, but it is as much a mental game as it is a physical sport,” said Gozon. “The level of professionalism that goes into fighting in the ring and gaming in a new world is often understated. A lot of strategy comes into play, and you see these fighters go into beast mode as soon as they step into the ring. This is how gamers are – they may be everyday Juans on the streets, but as soon as they sit behind that screen, they unleash their inner fighters and immerse themselves into these worlds they enter. “So what do we do? We give them the ultimate weapon, and that is the Predator,” Gozon concluded. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 19th, 2017

More details emerge surrounding death of ONE Championship fighter Rocky Batolbatol

The mixed martial arts world mourned the loss of one of their own, Sunday, when headlines broke that Filipino ONE Championship fighter Rocky Batolbatol had passed away after being involved in an accident in his hometown of Cagayan de Oro.  Batolbatol, 32, was supposed to fight on ONE Championship's inaugural event in Surabaya, Indonesia, but the event ended up being postponed due to logistical issues.  Details surrounding Batolbatol's tragic death has surfaced, revealing that he and his cousin, Geinar Ponce, were travelling on-foot along Gusa Highway when they were 'accidentally bumped' by a taxi being driven by Jerson Bersabal, according to the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office.  In a morbid twist of fate, the incident happened right in front of the Capitol University Medical Hospital, a private hospital, but the Batolbatol and Ponce were instead taken to the J.R. Borja public hospital which was reportedly over five kilometers away. Batolbatol and Ponce were both declared Dead on Arrival.  Batolbatol amassed a 5-3 professional record over his six-year MMA career. He last saw action back in May of 2016 in a loss to Christian Lee.    We here at ABS-CBN Sports are one in mourning the loss of Rocky Batolbatol, and would like to extend our prayers and sympathy to his family, friends, and loved ones.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 24th, 2017

ONE Championship: Ev Ting decisions Kamal Shalorus, calls out champ Eduard Folayang

strong>10 February 2017 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia /strong>: The largest sports media property in Asian history, ONE Championship™ (ONE), has once again electrified the capacity crowd at the Stadium Negara in Kuala Lumpur with another exciting evening of world-class mixed martial arts. The absolute best in local and international mixed martial arts stars took the ONE Championship cage by storm, delighting fans in Malaysia with non-stop action. In the main event, Ev “E.T” Ting emerged victorious over Kamal “Prince of Persia” Shalorus to win by split decision in a high-octane catchweight encounter. In the main event of the evening, lightweight contenders Ev Ting of Malaysia and Kamal Shalorus of Iran put on an absolute show to delight fans in attendance. For three rounds, Ting flaunted his tremendous striking, hammering Shalorus with lashing strikes on numerous occasions. Shalorus tried his best to take Ting to the ground, where he had the upper hand. However, he was unable to do so. In the end, Ting continued his winning streak, doing just enough to earn a split decision victory over Shalorus, who was unable to overcome Ting's sharpness. After the bout, Ting took the chance to thank the fans at the jam-packed Stadium Negara and called for a title shot against reigning ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard Folayang. “Eduard Folayang, I am coming to your home to take your belt. See you on April 21st,” he said in his post-fight interview. In the co-main event of the evening, Malaysia’s very own Agilan “Alligator” Thani authored one of the most spectacular finishes of ONE: THRONE OF TIGERS, submitting Jeff Huang of Chinese Taipei with an astonishing rear-naked choke. Thani put on a masterful performance, pacifying Huang’s striking advantage in the early proceedings as the hometown favorite utilized his impeccable ground game. The young Malaysian prospect executed a flawless transition into a rear-naked choke that left Huang no choice but to submit in the second round. Malaysian female MMA superstar Ann “Athena” Osman captured a satisfying victory in front of a jubilant hometown crowd by routing Cambodia’s Vy Srey Khouch. After a long feeling-out process between the two fighters from a toe-to-toe stance, Osman shifted gears and took Srey Khouch to the ground, where her opponent was at a stylistic disadvantage. Securing a full mount, Osman rained down heavy shots. Srey Khouch tried her best to survive the onslaught, laying back mostly on the defensive. However, Osman was simply too much for her Cambodian foe, claiming the stoppage with two seconds left in the first round. Russia’s Movlid “Killer” Khaibulaev accomplished a major victory in his maiden assignment as a ONE Championship athlete by marking the first defeat in the professional record of Brazilian featherweight standout Herbert “The Blaze” Burns. Khaibulaev showcased his pinpoint accurate striking early on, peppering Burns with stinging right hands and spinning back-kicks in the first two rounds of the featherweight showdown. Khaibulaev took matters on the mat in the third round, where he tagged Burns with telling blows and maneuvered his cage counterpart easily on the ground to get the unanimous nod from the three judges at cageside. Previously-unbeaten Pakistani featherweight prospect Ahmed “The Wolverine” Mujtaba experienced the first loss of his career as he went to battle against Malaysian mixed martial artist Keanu Subba. Both fighters started out aggressively, but it was Subba who showed a more capable set of grappling skills, locking in a deep guillotine choke in the first round to the roar of his hometown crowd. In a clash of high-caliber strawweights, Alex “Little Rock” Silva of Brazil extended his impressive winning streak to four bouts by mustering a scintillating submission conquest of Philippine boxing champion Roy Doliguez. Knowing the risk in the stand-up exchanges with Doliguez, Silva relied on his world-class Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu pedigree as he spun a web of crafty grappling to dominate his Filipino foe. In the third round, Silva was finally able to fasten an armbar to force the tap. Saiful “The Vampire” Merican of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia exhibited stellar form, proving himself a top bantamweight competitor with a stoppage victory over Filipino fighter Burn “Hitman” Soriano. Showcasing tremendous power with every strike and drawing cheers from the crowd after each landed blow, Merican’s thunderous kicks and punches proved too much for Soriano as the Filipino was unable to continue after the first round bell. Merican was awarded a technical knockout for his efforts. Singaporean prospect Tiffany “Soul Crusher” Teo notched her second-straight victory inside the ONE Championship cage by defeating Wushu Sanda gold-medalist Priscilla Hertati Lumban Gaol of Indonesia via unanimous decision. Muhammad Aiman of Malaysia kicked off a spectacular evening of world-class mixed martial arts action at ONE: THRONE OF TIGERS with a technical knockout victory over debuting Brazilian combatant Eduardo Novaes. Aiman finished the job with finesse in the first round, launching a perfectly-executed kick to the body before punctuating it with follow-up blows on the ground.   u> strong>Official results for ONE: THRONE OF TIGERS /strong> /u> Catchweight bout (79.8KG): Ev Ting defeats Kamal Shalorus by Split Decision (SD) after 3 rounds Welterweight bout: Agilan Thani defeats Jeff Huang by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 2:10 minutes of round 2 Catchweight bout (58.7kg): Ann Osman defeats Vy Srey Khouch by TKO (Strikes) at 4:58 minutes of round 1 Featherweight bout: Movlid Khaibulaev defeats Herbert Burns by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds Featherweight bout: Keanu Subba defeats Ahmed Mujtaba by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 2:56 minutes of round 1 Strawweight bout: Alex Silva  defeats Roy Doliguez by Submission (Armbar)  at 2:36 minutes of round 3 Bantamweight bout: Saiful Merican defeats Burn Soriano by TKO (Strikes) at 5:00 minutes of round 1 Strawweight bout: Tiffany Teo defeats Priscilla Hertati Lumban Gaol by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 3 rounds Bantamweight bout: Muhammad Aiman defeats Eduardo Novaes by TKO (Strikes) at 2:50 minutes of round 2 br />  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 10th, 2017

ONE Championship: Bigdash retains title; Catalan, Subora victorious

ONE Championship returned to the Jakarta Convention Center for another evening of world-class mixed martial arts (MMA) action. ONE: QUEST FOR POWER set the tone for what will be an amazing 2017 for ONE Championship with a series of compelling bouts featuring the absolute best in local and international MMA talent. In the main event, ONE Middleweight World Champion Vitaly Bigdash retained his title, defeating top contender “The Burmese Python” Aung La N Sang by unanimous decision after five rounds. div>  /div> div>In the main event of the evening, ONE Middleweight World Champion Vitaly Bigdash of Rostov-on-Don, Russia impressed with a great show of strength in a dominant performance over “The Burmese Python” Aung La N Sang of Myanmar. Throughout the bout, Bigdash kept N Sang at bay with his sharp combinations, while on the mat he connected with multiple elbows. After five rounds of action, it was a clear win for Bigdash who met very little resistance in outlasting the durable N Sang to remain undefeated, retaining his ONE Middleweight World Championship. /div> div>  /div> div>In the co-main event of the evening, 27-year-old Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen of Sydney, Australia authored one of the most spectacular finishes of the evening, stopping Japanese MMA veteran Kazunori Yokota with strikes to win by technical knockout just past the midway point of the first round. Yokota stalked Nguyen, looking to throw combinations but Nguyen timed Yokota with an overhand right that dropped him to the canvas. From there, Nguyen jumped on his foe and rained down punches from the top to earn the stoppage victory. /div> div>  /div> div>Lightweight contenders Vincent “MagniVincent” Latoel and Vaughn “The Spawn” Donayre put on an exciting show for fans in attendance, tagging each other with intense combinations for the majority of the three-round lightweight contest. On the mat, Donayre showcased his grappling skills, threatening with various submissions off his back. Latoel however was more consistent throughout and scored points with his takedowns and cage control. All three judges saw the bout in favor of Latoel to win by unanimous decision. /div> div>  /div> div>The highly-anticipated lightweight showdown between Georgi Stoyanov of Bulgaria and Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev of Russia ended on an unfortunate note, as the bout resulted in a No Contest ruling. Although Arslanaliev swarmed Stoyanov from the beginning of the bout and completely outclassed the Bulgarian, an ill-advised technical ground kick landed for Arslanaliev and Stoyanov was unable to continue. /div> div>  /div> div>Dutch featherweight standout based in Jakarta, Anthony “The Archangel” Engelen, put on a masterful performance, stopping Malaysian fight veteran A.J. “Pyro” Lias Mansor in under two minutes in the first round of a scheduled three-round bout. Engelen pressed Mansor up against the cage fence with a combination before a beautiful right hand felled Mansor, earning Engelen one of the most spectacular knockouts of his career. /div> div>  /div> div>Fans were treated to an action-packed clash of colossal light heavyweights as Igor Subora of the Ukraine and Sherif Mohamed of Egypt pushed each other to the limit in a tremendous three-round show of determination from both fighters. Subora effectively used his reach advantage to keep the smaller, stockier Mohamed at bay with his boxing throughout the bout. In the third round, both fighters fought through sheer exhaustion to make it to the final bell as Subora did just enough to outlast Mohamed to earn the unanimous decision. /div> div>  /div> div>Local martial arts hero from Jakarta, “The Terminator” Sunoto, brought the crowd to its feet with a riveting performance to defeat Cambodia’s Chan Heng by technical knockout just a little under three minutes into the first round. Sunoto wasted no time in taking the fight directly to Heng, challenging the Khun Khmer practitioner to a striking showdown at the center of the ONE Championship cage. Sunoto however, proved too much for the Cambodian after he gained mount and unleashed the ground-and-pound. /div> div>  /div> div>Unbeaten Indonesian flyweight prospect Stefer Rahardian defeated Jakarta-based Liberian fighter Jerome S. Paye via unanimous decision in the second preliminary bout of the evening. Rahardian showcased tremendous cage-control for the majority of the fight, smothering Paye with a consistent attack that left the Liberian stifled throughout the contest. The 30-year-old Rahardian left very little openings for Paye who just couldn’t get his offense going. In the end, Rahardian had just enough in the tank to complete a comprehensive three-round performance, earning the nod on all three judges’ scorecards. /div> div>  /div> div>Strawweights Rene Catalan of the Philippines and Adrian Matheis of Indonesia kicked off ONE: QUEST FOR POWER with a spirited display of mixed martial arts action, on a bustling Saturday night in Jakarta. After a dominant first round from Catalan, one that saw the Filipino attempt various finishes, the end came swiftly in the second when Catalan was able to execute an armbar to earn the submission victory. /div> div>  /div> div> strong>COMPLETE RESULTS /strong> /div> div>  /div> div>MW Title: Vitaly Bigdash defeats Aung La N Sang by Unanimous Decision /div> div>  /div> div>Featherweight bout: Martin Nguyen defeats Kazunori Yokota by TKO (Strikes) at 3:36 minutes of round 1 /div> div>  /div> div>Lightweight bout: Vincent Latoel defeats Vaughn Donayre by Unanimous Decision /div> div>  /div> div>Lightweight bout: Georgi Stoyanov, Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev (No Contest) /div> div>  /div> div>Featherweight bout: Anthony Engelen defeats AJ Lias Mansor by Knockout (KO) at 1:42 minutes of round 1 /div> div>  /div> div>Light Heavyweight bout: Igor Subora defeats Sherif Mohamed by Unanimous Decision /div> div>  /div> div>Bantamweight bout: Sunoto defeats Chan Heng by TKO (Strikes) at 2:30 minutes of round 1 /div> div>  /div> div>Flyweight bout: Stefer Rahardian defeats Jerome S. Paye by Unanimous Decision (UD) /div> div>  /div> div>Strawweight bout: Rene Catalan defeats Adrian Matheis by Submission (Armbar) at 2:08 minutes of round 2 /div>.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 15th, 2017

ONE Championship gets cash for major growth

em>By Greg Beacham, Associated Press /em> ONE Championship has secured a major equity investment from venture capital firm Sequoia India and investment firm Mission Holdings, positioning the ascendant mixed martial arts promotion to increase its presence throughout Asia. The investment means ONE Championship has raised over $100 million in total capital less than six years after its first show, according to Chatri Sityodtong, the promotion's chairman and CEO. Sityodtong told The Associated Press on Wednesday that ONE Championship plans to stage up to 30 events in 2018 and will financially compete to sign the world's best fighters, all while concentrating on its primary goal of being Asia's dominant MMA brand. To that mission, Sityodtong intends to expand the Singapore-based promotion's reach next year into Japan, South Korea and eventually India. 'Already we're the largest martial arts organization in the history of Asia,' Sityodtong said. 'All the pieces suggest that we have a big, big runway of growth ahead of us and that we're just scratching the surface of our potential.' The growth is already visible: In the final five months of 2017 alone, ONE Championship has 11 scheduled shows spread among Macau, Malaysia, China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Myanmar. After doing 18 events this year, Sityodtong projects 24 to 30 shows for 2018. The increase will include aggressive expansion into China, where ONE Championship is already staging events this year in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, just north of Hong Kong. ONE Championship already claimed it was the largest sports media property in Asia before the latest round of investment, with video programming seen in 128 countries and live shows attracting large crowds throughout the Eastern hemisphere. The promotion received capital last year from Heliconia Capital Management, which is owned by Singapore's sovereign wealth fund. Sityodtong is a Harvard-educated entrepreneur and a lifelong martial artist who left a lucrative career as a hedge fund manager to start ONE Championship as a showcase for homegrown Asian martial artists. He is looking forward to utilizing Sequoia's expertise on business expansion while he plots his still-young promotion's next moves. 'It's been a whirlwind,' Sityodtong said. 'Just six years ago, this was a PowerPoint presentation, and now we arguably have the most blue chip shareholder base for any sports property out here in Asia.' The UFC, the sport's richest and most prominent promotion, is striving to increase its presence in Asia with shows in Singapore, Japan and China this year. UFC fights are watched avidly across Asia, and the promotion has a healthy number of fighters under contract with Asian ethnicity, but Sityodtong claims ONE Championship already has 'a massive lead over the UFC' in the fight for Asian fans. 'We're very focused on Asia, with Asian content that really resonates,' Sityodtong said. 'So it's very different scale. It would be like ONE Championship coming to America with Asian heroes and trying to ignite American audiences without any Americans on a show. It's hard to do so.' ONE Championship's talent pool is Asian-focused, but not exclusive. Its champions include Filipino-American heavyweight Brandon Vera, Wisconsin-born welterweight Ben Askren, Brazilian light heavyweight Roger Gracie — and Angela Lee , the Canada-born, Hawaii-raised atomweight who has become one of the promotion's most popular fighters. While ONE Championship's roster of fighters probably doesn't measure up to the UFC's group on pure overall talent, Sityodtong's promotion is about much more than blood and belts. Although he has the money to bid for top free-agent fighters alongside the UFC and Bellator, Sityodtong is more interested in creating a product that suits ONE Championship's conception of the Asian audience's sensibilities. 'The UFC has done a wonderful job in the Western hemisphere and deserve their success, but they focus primarily on the fighting, on the violence, on controversy, on disrespect,' Sityodtong said. 'You know, Conor McGregor, in your face, F-this, F-that. We've chosen to focus on Asian values, and that kind of stuff just doesn't fly. ONE Championship is a true celebration of martial arts, which is Asia's greatest cultural treasure, and we want to honor the Asian values of humility, kindness, integrity, strength and discipline. So it's a very different approach.' Sityodtong believes that cultivated, clean-cut image has the side benefit of attracting corporate sponsors and deep-pocketed partners — including Sequoia India, a branch of the famed U.S. venture capital firm that invested in Apple, Google, PayPal, YouTube, Instagram, Yahoo!, WhatsApp and countless other foundational technology companies. 'ONE Championship has been a pioneer and major driving force of the martial arts industry in Asia, with surging popularity across major countries,' said Shailendra J Singh, the managing director of Sequoia Capital (India). 'It has played an incredible role in nurturing local talent and developing local stars, led by a wonderful, mission-oriented team. We are delighted to join the team in their pursuit of developing the leading martial arts franchise for Asia's 4.4 billion people.' br />     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 20th, 2017

Mayweather-McGregor set for T-Mobile after deal with Big3

em>By Brian Mahoney, Associated Press /em> Floyd Mayweather's boxing match against Conor McGregor will be held at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas after promoters reached an agreement with Ice Cube to move the championship game of his Big3 basketball league. The final game of the 3-on-3 season of former NBA players will now be held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Aug. 26, with a 4:30 p.m. Eastern start. The bout is at night. The Big3 said Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) it reached a financial and promotional deal with MGM Resorts, Mayweather Promotions and UFC. Terms weren't disclosed, with the rapper-actor and Big3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz simply calling it a 'generous offer that we could not refuse.' 'We are happy we could work together to create an opportunity for our fans to experience both events, making Aug. 26 the most exciting day in sports and entertainment Las Vegas has ever seen,' they said in a statement. Mayweather and McGregor are set to begin a four-city tour this week to promote the fight. Mayweather will be returning from retirement to face the Irish mixed martial arts star and UFC President Dana White had said the match would be held at T-Mobile, the largest venue in Las Vegas. But the arena had continued to list the basketball game on its schedule of events. Opened in 2016, T-Mobile Arena lists a capacity of 20,000 for boxing, about 3,000 more seats than the MGM Grand Garden Arena. The game will be shown live on Fox. Games have been taped and shown a day later on Fox Sports 1 on Monday nights during the season. The Big3 says those who have purchased tickets will earn priority seating for the MGM Grand Garden Arena event, with additional ticket information to be announced in the coming days.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 12th, 2017

Ice Cube: Big3 open to moving venue for Mayweather fight

em>By Brian Mahoney, Associated PRess /em> Before getting to Conor McGregor, Floyd Mayweather has to deal with Ice Cube. Mayweather is supposed to fight McGregor on Aug. 26 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in what could be the richest boxing match ever. Problem is, Cube already has the venue booked for the championship game of his 3-on-3 basketball league. The rapper-actor said Thursday the sides are in discussions and the Big3 is open to moving. He believes an agreement is near. 'But until then, we're still in the T-Mobile Arena,' Cube said during a conference call. 'So I think we're close, but until we get over the finish line, we're just close.' Opened in 2016, T-Mobile Arena is the biggest venue in Las Vegas, listing a capacity of 20,000 for boxing. The backup venue, the MGM Grand Garden Arena, would hold about 3,000 fewer seats. 'I'm pretty sure the fighters want that money, the promoters of the fight, so that being said we just got to be treated right,' Cube said. The undefeated Mayweather will be ending his retirement to face McGregor, the popular mixed martial arts star, and would be fighting at T-Mobile for the first time. UFC president Dana White has said the match would be there. But T-Mobile's website still lists the Big3 championship game on Aug. 26 on its calendar of events, with no mention of Mayweather-McGregor. While Cube said arena officials could ultimately do what they wanted, they couldn't do so without breaking a contract with his league. 'We will have to come to an agreement and we will be working to do so, but we do have the arena under contract,' Big3 CEO Amy Trask said. If the Big3 moves, it would go to the MGM Grand Garden Arena. That game is scheduled to begin in the afternoon and the fight is at night, and Big3 executives think the increased attention and all the celebrities the pay-per-view attraction will bring to the Strip will benefit the league of former NBA players as it wraps up its inaugural season. 'So it's turned out to be an incredibly good thing and there's a lot of people from both sides that are friends and we really are just trying to work out what's best for both parties,' Big3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz said. 'It's not a big deal because we have two amazing arenas.'   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 7th, 2017

With Rousey s support, Browne determined to end loss streak

LOS ANGELES (AP) — While Travis Browne's relationship with Ronda Rousey blossomed, his mixed martial arts career wilted.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJul 6th, 2017

With Rousey's support, Browne determined to end loss streak

em>By Greg Beacham, Associated Press /em> LOS ANGELES (AP) — While Travis Browne's relationship with Ronda Rousey blossomed, his mixed martial arts career wilted. Once considered a surefire heavyweight title contender, Browne has lost three straight fights. After losing just once in his first 18 professional bouts, he has lost five of his last seven in a skid that began shortly before his high-profile relationship with Rousey, the most famous woman in their sport. Yet Browne is eager to correct anybody who might think his slump in the cage is connected to his domestic bliss with the former bantamweight champion, who accepted his marriage proposal in April. Browne said his new fiancée is the biggest reason he's still in there swinging as he prepares to face Oleksiy Oliynik at UFC 213 on Saturday in Las Vegas. 'My personal life is better than it's ever been,' Browne said. 'Being with somebody who understands the game, being with somebody who's there to support you as a partner in life instead of being that person who draws that energy out of you ... I wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for that. I'd be pretty low in my career right now, so having that personal backing has made all the difference in the world.' Browne (18-6-1) has regularly fought in main events during his seven-year UFC career, but he's meeting Oliynik (51-10-1) on the preliminary card before the pay-per-view portion of UFC 213 at T-Mobile Arena. The 6-foot-7 Hawaii-born heavyweight knows he has to rebuild his reputation as a fearsome contender after going winless since January 2016. 'This last year has been a tough one,' Browne said. 'I was on a steady downward slope. But every fight, you've got to go out there and prove yourself, so it doesn't deter me from going out there and putting in the work. I feel like I have yet to really show the best of me, and ... I'm done talking about it. I just need to go out there and perform. I just need to shut up and just go out there and do it.' Browne's recent struggles include stoppage losses to Cain Velasquez, Andrei Arlovski and Derrick Lewis, who knocked out Browne in February and then made rude comments about Rousey in his post-fight interview while also referencing unproven allegations of domestic violence by Browne's ex-wife two years ago. Browne realizes such scrutiny is part of his life now with Rousey, whose fame and fortune attract attention that neither fighter desires. Browne is also eager to protect his two sons from the fallout of his divorce, which was finalized one month after his last victory. Those concerns were far away when Rousey and Browne got engaged under a waterfall in New Zealand. He was more nervous about the proposal than he has ever been about getting in the cage. 'I wanted everything to be perfect, and the least she deserves is me being perfect,' Browne said. 'That was the pressure I put on myself. After I proposed, she was like, 'I knew something was up with you. You were on edge, and we're on vacation.' Because usually I'm the most laid-back guy, but I just had this thing in my mind.' Browne and Rousey have moved inland from Venice Beach, California, to Rousey's native Riverside, where they tend a large garden and eat the 400 pounds of meat stored in their freezers from Browne's extensive exploits as a bow hunter. Browne aspires to the isolationist, survivalist lifestyle that appeals to many MMA fighters, but he also can't imagine completely dropping off the grid and abandoning his sport forever. He intends to keep fighting as long as he can, although he knows a fourth straight loss could put him in danger of release from the UFC. Rousey has shown no indication of being interested in re-starting her own MMA career after two straight losses, including a brutal first-round stoppage last December by current champion Amanda Nunes, who fights Valentina Shevchenko in the main event of UFC 213. Browne supports whatever Rousey decides to do, but he isn't pushing or prying. 'That's one thing we set up early on as being a couple,' Browne said. 'She (has) her own work. That's her baby. What I do is my baby, and outside of that, we have an amazing relationship.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 6th, 2017

AND NEW! Aung La Nsang decisions Vitaly Bigdash to become ONE middleweight champion

30 June 2017 – Yangon, Myanmar: The largest sports media property in Asian history, ONE Championship™ (ONE), electrified the Thuwunna Indoor Stadium with another blockbuster evening of authentic martial arts. The beautiful city of Yangon played host to ONE: LIGHT OF A NATION, which showcased the absolute best in local and international martial arts talent. In the main event, Aung La N Sang was crowned the new ONE Middleweight World Champion with a unanimous decision victory over Vitaly Bigdash. In the main event, Myanmar national icon “The Burmese Python” Aung La N Sang brought the crowd up to their feet with a spectacular performance, defeating Russia’s Vitaly Bigdash to be crowned the new ONE Middleweight World Champion. In the first round, Aung La staggered Bigdash with a blistering combination that had him reeling against the cage fence. Bigdash, in a display of incredible toughness and warrior mindset, survived the round to the best of his ability. The rest of the bout saw both competitors each have their moments in what was a very close contest. In the end, all three judges scored in favor of Aung La who took home a hard-earned unanimous decision victory. “AGD Bank is proud of our national hero Aung La N Sang for his tremendous achievement tonight. He has united the nation and serves as an inspiration to all of us. We are also very proud of the Myanmar athletes who have fought tonight. I hope this is the start of a golden era of Myanmar Lethwei martial arts athletes excelling on the international stage,” said Htoo Htet Tay Za, Managing Director of AGD Bank. In the Yangon Flyweight Tournament Final, Saw Min Min captured the championship trophy, earning the respect of his hometown crowd with a spirited performance against compatriot Shwe Kyaung Thar. Saw Min Min finished his opponent via guillotine choke just under two minutes into the first round to be crowned Tournament Champion. It was a delightful showcase of local talent, one that promises a bright future for Myanmar’s budding martial arts ecosystem. In a back-and-forth battle between two former ONE world title challengers, Japan’s Mei “V.V” Yamaguchi and Chinese Taipei’s Jenny Huang brought the crowd up to their feet with a spectacular performance. It was a battle of two well-rounded competitors who each had their moments in a tough bout. After a first round which saw Yamaguchi take Huang down to the canvas with her wrestling, the Japanese martial artist opened up the second round looking to put on the finishing touches. Using her experience, Yamaguchi took Huang’s back and sunk in a rear naked choke to force the tap. Former Brazilian jiu-jitsu No Gi world champion Bruno Pucci scored the first technical knockout victory of his career, stopping Filipino featherweight Jimmy “The Silencer” Yabo with a volley of strikes from full mount. As soon as the bout began, Pucci wasted no time in hunting for the takedown which he got on the first attempt. On the mat, Pucci easily passed guard, earning the finish shortly after. In a stunning battle between two former Lethwei practitioners, local bantamweight Tha Pyay Nyo made very quick work of opponent Htet Aung Oo to win by shocking knockout. As soon as the bell rang, the two warriors collided at the center of the cage looking to throw haymakers. Tha Pyay Nyo then connected on a picture-perfect right straight to send Htet Aung Oo crashing to the canvas, ending the bout just 16-seconds into the very first round. South Korean prospect Kevin “Oldboy” Chung made his ONE Championship debut opposite Chinese warrior Zhong Qing Ya in an action-packed affair. In the first round, Chung used his speed and power to connect on a handful of thudding strikes on Zhong who defended well against takedown attempts. In the second round, Chung finally took Zhong down with a double-leg and went straight to work on the ground-and-pound, landing a series of sharp elbows. Referee Yuji Shimada called a halt to the contest in round two after Chung connected cleanly on two knees from side control. In two tough contests, the Yangon Flyweight Tournament kicked off all the action at ONE: LIGHT OF A NATION with explosive semi-final matchups. Saw Min Min won the first bout, knocking out opponent Kyar Ba Hein, while Ye Thway Ne battled Pat Kyaw Lin Naing in the second bout to win by unanimous decision after two rounds.   u> strong>COMPLETE RESULTS FOR ONE: LIGHT OF A NATION /strong> /u> ONE Middleweight World Championship bout: Aung La N Sang defeats Vitaly Bigdash by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 5 rounds Yangon Flyweight Tournament Final bout: Saw Min Min defeats Shwe Kyaung Thar by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 1:43 minutes of round 1 Women’s atomweight bout: Mei Yamaguchi defeats Jenny Huang by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 4:00 minutes of round 2 Featherweight bout: Bruno Pucci defeats Jimmy Yabo by TKO (Strikes) at 2:12 minutes of round 1 Bantamweight bout: Tha Pyay Nyo defeats Htet Aung Oo by Knockout at 0:16 minutes of round 1 Catchweight bout (68.0kg): Kevin Chung defeats Zhong Qing Ya by TKO (Strikes) at 3:37 minutes of round 2 Yangon Flyweight Tournament Semi-Final bout: Ye Thway Ne defeats Pat Kyaw Lin Naing by Unanimous Decision (UD) after 2 rounds Yangon Flyweight Tournament Semi-Final bout: Saw Min Min defeats Kyar Ba Hein by Knockout in round 1 .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 1st, 2017

The real thing in boxing is Canelo vs Triple G

em>By Barry Wilner, Associated Press /em> NEW YORK (AP) — Think about this as the real fight. Forget that 'event' three weeks earlier that is making such a splash. The middleweight bout in Las Vegas on Sept. 16 between Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez is all about boxing. Showdown, not showtime. Sure, Floyd Mayweather is coming out of retirement to face mixed martial arts champion Conor McGregor on Aug. 26 in a matchup that has generated tremendous buzz. But for true fans of the 'sweet science,' Golovkin-Alvarez is the most anticipated fight since Mayweather outpointed Manny Pacquiao two years ago. One that figures to be a lot more of a fight than Mayweather-Pacquiao, too. 'Conor is not a boxer, he's a UFC fighter,' Golovkin said Tuesday. 'That is a big commercial show, it's show business. It's not boxing and people understand if they want a true boxing show, a classic, it is Sept. 16.' That would be when the undefeated Triple G (37-0, 33 knockouts) puts his middleweight belts on the line against Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs, the loss to Mayweather in 2013). 'The fact it's three weeks before the major boxing holiday of Sept. 16 and a classic fight between two great champions doesn't affect it a bit,' adds promoter Oscar De La Hoya. 'If people want to see a real fight, then tune in on Sept. 16.' Golovkin-Alvarez has been a long time in the making. There were claims the fighters (and their promoters) were ducking each other, or that top money wasn't there. But after Golovkin outpointed Danny Jacobs — his first fight going 12 rounds — and Alvarez destroyed Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. earlier this year, the bout was made. At 35, Triple G is nearly nine years older than Alvarez. He doesn't see that as significant. 'I feel like 25,' Golovkin told The Associated Press. 'I believe on Sept. 16, I will have my peak. It will be amazing for boxing.' Alvarez, who wasn't quite ready for a tactical master like Mayweather in their 2013 fight, believes he's matured now. Of course, Mayweather never has punched like Triple G does. 'I was very young against Mayweather. I didn't have the experience that I possess now, the wisdom I can display when I'm in the ring, the total fighter I've become,' he said. 'It's all very different. I was 22, 23 in that fight. I was a bit immature with my boxing to face someone like Mayweather, but we fought and that was the outcome. 'But I learned a lot of stuff. Things about being in the ring and outside the ring. It all motivated me more. I always crave to be the best and I'm the best right now.' That will be proven — or disproven — three months from now. What is unquestioned is that Alvarez has a strong following in Las Vegas, where Golovkin has never fought. He also looked far better in his most recent win than did Golovkin, though the difference in quality of opponent was vast. Then again, Triple G might have benefited from going the distance with Jacobs, another hard puncher. 'I needed that fight with Danny. He brought me to the 12th round,' Golovkin said, a smile creasing his face. 'I needed the experience of the decision. I needed the decision part to show it is the second step (besides winning by knockout).' Alvarez doesn't expect any decisions in this fight. As De La Hoya notes, more than 75 percent of their fights have ended in KOs. Neither is interested in having the judges decide a winner. 'We'll have a knockout in all likelihood due to the heavy punch of both, the style of both,' Alvarez said. 'And obviously it is that they will raise my arm at the end of the fight.' Or Triple G's. Regardless, both the Mexican Alvarez and the Kazakh Golovkin see themselves as heroes, inside the ring and out. This fight is about more than owning some belts. 'There have been great fighters in Mexico, so many great legends. And I respect all of them,' Alvarez said. 'Every fighter has their history. I'm writing mine. This is my era, I'm taking care of mine. 'I'm 26 and I've been part of some of the greatest fights. I've broken records. I'm already part of history, but I have so much to attain and I have no intention of wasting a single opportunity.' Golovkin, also an Olympic silver medalist, hasn't been one to let great opportunities slip by. 'This is special for both of us,' he said. 'We are national heroes and boxing heroes. I don't know who is close to us in boxing. 'I know Canelo is a hero of his country and his city, and we have the same situation. I feel big support and not just as a national hero, but for the whole world.' Then, laughing, Triple G added: 'Like Superman or Batman or Ironman.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 20th, 2017

Floyd says McGregor duel is what people want

LOS ANGELES – Boxing legend Floyd Mayweather says he has no problem coming out of retirement to fight mixed martial arts star Conor McGregor in what some are.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJun 18th, 2017

McGregor backers: Mayweather fight is no sideshow

SINGAPORE (AP) — Conor McGregor's fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Aug. 26 has been described by critics as a novelty and a sideshow, among other things. McGregor's camp doesn't care what it's called, promising only that it'll be a contest. 'Keep doubting us. We love it,' McGregor's agent, Audie Attar, said in an interview Friday with Sports News Television. 'The human element of sport is that anything can happen.' Mayweather, who retired in 2015 after winning all his 49 professional fights as a boxer, is back in training at age 40 after accepting an offer he couldn't refuse from the mixed martial arts fighter who has never had a pro boxing fight. 'These are two world-class combat sport athletes,' Attar said. 'Yes they come from different disciplines. Yes there are going to be different rules, so it's going to be confined within those set of rules and we understand that. But I don't think you can take away from (McGregor's) ability, his power, his reach, his ... all these different attributes that I think he will bring to the table.' Las Vegas oddsmakers immediately made Mayweather an 11-1 favorite when the fight — scheduled for 12 rounds in Las Vegas at 154 pounds in a boxing ring and under boxing rules — was announced. McGregor, the wildly popular UFC star, is 21-3 in UFC fights, and is coming off a win in November against Eddie Alvarez. Although he hasn't boxed professionally, McGregor did box while growing up and is known for his striking expertise. 'Floyd's been an amazing tactician in term of his quickness, his ability to get in there, his ability to elude punches,' Attar said. 'But I think on Aug. 26, I'm bullish on the idea that that's going to change and he is going to meet someone that is going to have the physical attributes that will potentially catch him and be that one, 49-1.' Attar said Mayweather was arguably the greatest boxer of all time, 'but there's some things that he hasn't faced before and Conor brings those ... unique differentiation attributes and strategies. 'Both of their styles will cause them to engage differently than Floyd's other competitors before Conor. And in my opinion, that's going to yield a different result. 'I'm more confident on the idea that we're gonna be that one. 49 and one.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 16th, 2017

Mayweather, McGregor seal megafight

LOS ANGELES –  Boxing legend Floyd Mayweather and mixed martial arts icon Conor McGregor confirmed plans for a long-awaited showdown on Wednesday, triggering.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJun 15th, 2017

Mayweather-McGregor superfight made official for August 26th

TIM DAHLBERG, AP Boxing Writer br /> LAS VEGAS (AP) — Floyd Mayweather Jr. and UFC star Conor McGregor will meet Aug. 26 in a boxing match that will feature two of the top-selling fighters in the world. The two fighters both announced the fight Wednesday, after months of speculation about whether Mayweather would come out of retirement at the age of 40 to face a mixed martial arts fighter who has never had a pro boxing match. Oddsmakers immediately made Mayweather a big 11-1 favorite in a fight that will take place in a boxing ring and be governed by boxing rules. br /> 'It's official,' Mayweather said on Instagram next to a video poster of both fighters. 'THE FIGHT IS ON,' McGregor tweeted several minutes earlier, posting a picture of himself next to one of Mayweather's father, Floyd Sr. Mayweather, who retired in September 2015 after winning all 49 of his pro fights, will face the Irish UFC superstar at the MGM Grand arena. He had tweeted a picture of himself sparring in recent days to show he was already getting ready for the bout. 'This is really an unprecedented event,' said Stephen Espinoza, who heads Showtime Sports, which will handle the pay-per-view. 'Really we haven't seen anything in modern history that resembles it, it's impossible to predict how many sales this will do.' Espinoza said the fight came together quickly after McGregor and the UFC reached agreement last month on their end of the deal and Mayweather's team pushed for the fight in recent days. 'All parties were motivated and reasonable and thrilled we could get everything done,' he said. 'The sky's the limit on this.' Mayweather will fight at the relatively advanced age of 41 in a bout that McGregor has been pushing for months. It finally came together and Nevada boxing officials on Wednesday approved the date for a Mayweather Promotions bout. Though oddsmakers make Mayweather a big favorite, the thought of the fight has excited many in the MMA world. It has also intrigued some in boxing, though most dismiss McGregor's chances under boxing rules against one of the greatest defensive fighters in history. Even if the actual bout may not shape up as a great matchup, the run-up to the fight will. Both fighters are noted for their ability to sell their fights, and both have exchanged in trash talking and more to promote their bouts. 'As with every Mayweather and McGregor fight part of the appeal is the spectacle and outsize personalities who are participating in it,' Espinoza said. The pay-per-view revenue for the event would likely gross tens of millions of dollars. It comes less than a month before Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez meet in a highly anticipated fight Sept. 16 that could rival it for pay-per-view buys. br />   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 14th, 2017

Ex-MMA fighter War Machine gets 36 years to life in kidnap, beating case

LAS VEGAS — The former mixed martial arts fighter known as War Machine was sentenced Monday (Tuesday Manila time) to 36 years to life in Nevada state prison.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsJun 6th, 2017

Ex-MMA fighter War Machine gets 36 years to life in kidnap, beating case

KEN RITTER, Associated Press   LAS VEGAS (AP) — The former mixed martial arts fighter known as War Machine was sentenced Monday to 36 years to life in Nevada state prison for kidnapping, beating and sexually assaulting his porn actress ex-girlfriend and attacking her male friend at her Las Vegas home in 2014. Jonathan Paul Koppenhaver, 35, offered an apology full of self-loathing during his sentencing on 29 felony and misdemeanor charges in the attacks on Christy Mack and Corey Thomas. He called himself a 'very lost, very empty person' who hated his aggressive impulses and 'should have killed myself by now.' 'Sometimes I didn't realize what I did until I'd already done it,' Koppenhaver told Clark County District Court Judge Elissa Cadish. 'I hate that this happened.' Koppenhaver will be 71 before he's eligible for parole. His lawyer, Jay Leiderman, said Koppenhaver tried to hang himself in jail in January, but that he has turned to religion and wants to become a role model behind bars. The Associated Press normally does not identify people who say they are victims of sexual assault, but Mack gave AP permission to use her name. She has spoken publicly about her experience with domestic violence. Her legal name is Christine Mackinday. She, her mother and Thomas also spoke during a lengthy sentencing hearing that Leiderman tried to avoid altogether. The judge rejected Leiderman's bid for a new trial based on an obscure 1911 state law that the defense attorney said would have let Koppenhaver tell the jury that he 'just lost it' and fell into a blind rage amounting to unconsciousness during the attacks, and therefore could not have known he was committing a crime. Leiderman said later he would appeal to the Nevada Supreme Court. Koppenhaver didn't testify at his two-week trial on 34 charges. The jury in March failed to reach a verdict on two attempted murder charges. The jury acquitted him of three lesser counts — battery with intent to commit sexual assault, burglary with a weapon and sexually motivated coercion. Leiderman characterized Koppenhaver at trial as a 'raging bull' with brain injuries from his fighting career and emotions inflamed by the use of steroids and non-prescription stimulant and antidepressant drugs that could have caused mood swings and violence the defense attorney termed 'roid rage.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 6th, 2017

Holloway stops Aldo in 3rd, wins featherweight belt

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Max Holloway claimed the undisputed UFC featherweight title on Saturday night, stopping long-reigning champion Jose Aldo in the third round of an impressive upset victory. Holloway (18-3) won the belt in Aldo's native Brazil with a dynamite finish. The interim 145-pound champion floored Aldo with a big right hand, getting on top and raining down punishment until referee John McCarthy stopped the bout with 47 seconds left in the round. The Hawaii-born Holloway earned his 11th consecutive UFC victory and claimed the title held by Aldo for most of the past six years. Aldo lost the belt to Conor McGregor in December 2015, but regained it last year. Aldo (26-3) is the most accomplished featherweight in mixed martial arts history, but he has lost two of his last three bouts after winning 18 consecutive fights from 2006-15. Top Brazilian strawweight contender Claudia Gadelha recorded an impressive first-round stoppage of Poland's Karolina Kowalkiewicz, and Vitor Belfort also won a debatable unanimous decision over Nate Marquardt, thrilling the Brazilian fans of the 40-year-old former UFC champion from Rio. But in the main event, Aldo couldn't capitalize on his home-crowd advantage after the opening round against Holloway, who didn't waste his first shot at the undisputed title. Holloway clawed his way to this stage with a lengthy unbeaten run since his loss to McGregor in August 2013, capped by his stoppage win over Anthony Pettis for the interim belt last December. Aldo's hand speed and overall quickness were confounding early on for Holloway, whose normally crisp striking struggled to match Aldo's movement. After Aldo controlled the first round, Holloway found his rhythm in a tight second, matching Aldo's famed work rate and aggression. Holloway then decked Aldo with a ferocious right in the third, sending the champion to the ground and allowing Holloway to get into mount. Holloway rained down punches on Aldo and nearly landed a rear naked choke during the prolonged scramble. Holloway was relentless, and Aldo couldn't figure out a way to escape before getting finished. Aldo was the strong favorite at Jeunesse Arena in his adopted hometown. He was fighting in Rio for the fourth time in his last eight bouts.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 4th, 2017

ONE Championship: Dynasty of Heroes to air on S+A

The youngest ever mixed martial arts (MMA) world champion Angela “Unstoppable” Lee puts her Women’s Atomweight title and her perfect record on the line in ONE Championship’s “Dynasty of Heroes” fight card this Friday (May 26), airing LIVE from the Singapore Indoor Stadium at Kallang, Singapore on S+A at 8:30pm. The submission artist (7-0; 5 Submissions) will take on challenger Istela Nunes (5-0; 2 KOs) and will rely on her unparalleled ground combat skills and grappling techniques to subdue her seventh challenger. Nunes, meanwhile, hopes to goad the champion into a stand-up fight to snatch the belt. In the night’s other main event, it’s another battle of the undefeated as Ben Askren tries to bring the “Funky” to the “Alligator,” Agilan Thani, in a welterweight brawl everyone is waiting to see, with the ONE Welterweight world title on the line. Askren has been undefeated in 15 fights. Thani, on the other hand, considered one of the rising welterweight stars in ONE Championship, packs a perfect 7-0 record. Meanwhile, Filipino cage warrior and Team Lakay representative Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio (8-5) is on a comeback trail as he takes a second crack at fierce rival Anatpong “Mak” Bunrad (5-2) in the undercard. Eustaquio o hopes to avenge his earlier loss to Bunrad and keep Team Lakay’s winning streak inside the ONE Championship arena. Curiously, Eustaquio’s last loss came at the hands of submission specialist Toni Tauru, who was clobbered to oblivion by fellow Team Lakay fighter Kevin Belingon in “Kings of Destiny.” Don’t miss the explosive brawls headlined by ONE Atomweight World Champion Angela “Unstoppable” Lee and ONE Welterweight World champion Ben “Funky” Askren on “ONE: Dynasty of Heroes” LIVE on S+A this Friday (May 26), 8:30pm beaming straight from the Singapore Indoor Stadium.  For more information and stories, go online visit ABS-CBN’s sports hub sports.abs-cbn.com, and follow their official social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter (@ABSCBNSports). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 25th, 2017

ONE Championship's Angela Lee chases MMA stardom outside UFC

GREG BEACHAM, AP Sports Writer   Angela Lee is a citizen of the world. Born in Canada and raised in Hawaii by her South Korean mother and Singaporean father, the 20-year-old has lived her short adult life in constant movement around the Pacific Rim and to innumerable points beyond. When asked how she defines herself geographically, Lee can't pick just one identity. 'I feel like I'm comfortable in any of those areas, any of those countries,' Lee said. 'I think it's a blessing to have so much mixed culture.' Lee also doesn't fit into any particular box as one of the world's most intriguing up-and-coming mixed martial artists. The daughter of two martial arts instructors is a gifted wrestler, a strong striker and a prototype for the next generation of well-rounded MMA prospects. And she didn't need the UFC to reach the precipice of international stardom, either. Lee (7-0) fights for ONE Championship, a Singapore-based promotion that dominates the burgeoning Asian market for professional MMA. She defends her 115-pound title for the second time Friday in a headlining bout against Istela Nunes at Singapore Indoor Stadium. Lee's fame is already remarkable around Asia, where her combination of talent and charisma has inspired comparison to Ronda Rousey. In just two years as a professional, the former Hawaii state wrestling champion is building buzz while expanding non-Asian MMA fans' UFC-centric perception of the sport. 'I'm maturing as a fighter, but I still have so much to learn,' Lee said. 'That's the exciting part. I feel like I'm not even close to my peak or my potential yet.' Lee was the first woman to headline a ONE Championship show last year when she won the promotion's atomweight — called strawweight by the UFC — title. Her show this week is the second ONE event headlined by a woman, and she praises both her promotion and Asian fight fans for embracing the women's game so quickly. 'When I first started my fighting as an amateur, there were still a few critics saying women shouldn't be fighting, this and that,' Lee said. 'Just in these two years, it's really been amazing to see the mindset change for people, and how they're looking at these women who are stepping into the cage. We definitely get a lot more respect now. We've come a long way, and I'm excited for all the progress that is still to come.' The UFC has never found a solid foothold in the Asian market despite numerous attempts over the years. The promotion is trying again next month with a show at Singapore Indoor Stadium featuring several Asian contenders on a card headlined by former champion Holly Holm and ex-title contender Bethe Correia. Lee isn't sure whether she will attend the UFC show next month, since she might be home in Hawaii. 'I'm curious to see what the turnout is going to be like in June,' Lee said. 'I don't know too much about how dominant they (could be) on this side, but I know for sure that ONE Championship sells out stadiums every single time they host an event here. So definitely, I'd say ONE Championship has a lockdown on Asia and the Asian market.' To answer a question posed to her almost weekly for the past two years, Lee thinks she could handle herself against anybody on the UFC's 115-pound roster. That includes long-reigning champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk, widely considered the top pound-for-pound fighter in the women's game. 'I would be so game to fight Joanna or any of the UFC girls,' Lee said. 'I'm very confident in my skill set against theirs. I have no problem stepping into the cage with any of them.' But ONE is building a stable of world-class talent to compete with Lee, and she intends to keep up her pursuit of stardom and sponsorships from her home base in Singapore. There is a major downside to pursuing a professional fighting career in Singapore, however: One of the world's greatest food cities isn't a great place to be in the final days of a weight cut. She believes she can fight off her current cravings for a huge burger until after her bout. 'It's definitely a struggle for me, especially when my family wants to go out to eat, and of course I'm not going to make them suffer with me,' Lee said with a laugh. 'I'm like, 'You guys go ahead.' It's very torturous for me to be eating my salad and then having them feasting in front of me, but it's just more motivation for me to get the job done on fight night.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 25th, 2017