Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon, 26, of the United States made his ONE Championship debut on May 26, 2017 in a grappling bout against Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, 34, of Japan. Almost a year after beating Aoki, Tonon will make his debut as an MMA fighter.
On March 24, 2018, Tonon will face Richard “The Notorious” Corminal, a Filipino stalwart now based in Malaysia. The two will compete in the lightweight division on the main card of “ONE: Iron Will” at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand.
“I do not know what will happen in the match, but I am so excited because I like challenges,” Tonon pointed out. “Success is a future for only those able to see the value in facing challenges. Surely, I will exert tremendous effort in this new career path of mine.”
On the mat, Tonon owns notable victories over mixed martial artists, such as Aoki, Dillon Danis, Beneil Dariush, Marcin Held, Gilbert Burns, Vinny Magalhaes and Ralek Gracie. With an illustrious grappling career behind him, Tonon seeks to emulate the success of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners like BJ Penn, Royce Gracie and Demian Maia, who rose to prominence by trading their Gis for four-ounce gloves.
“When I found Jiu-Jitsu, I realized that if I wanted to be good at this, I needed to put the actual work in,” Tonon stated. “I will do the same thing in the new chapter of my martial arts career because I really do want to be the best at this.”
As the sport continues to evolve with the rise and incorporation of other martial arts disciplines, Tonon made it clear that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will always have a high regard for him. He declared, “By heart, I will always be a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner.”
“There are so many great athletes who paved the way for young competitors like me and made these two sports what it is today,” Tonon noted. “I will represent the art of Jiu-Jitsu with pride inside the cage.”