Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen, 29, of Australia and Vietnam will become the first ever three-division world champion in the history of mixed martial arts if he wins at “ONE: Reign of Kings.” But instead of accomplishing such a feat, he may suffer defeat if his weakness is successfully exploited by his opponent.
The SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines will place host to “ONE: Reign of Kings” on July 27, 2018. In the main event, Nguyen will compete for the ONE Interim Bantamweight World Champion belt against hometown hero Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, 30, from Team Lakay.
“There is no underestimating this guy but I think his biggest weakness is his speed, especially in this fight,” Belingon said of Nguyen. “He is not faster than me. I think this will come down to who gets there first.”
Since losing to Bibiano “The Flash” Fernandes, 38, of Brazil for the ONE Bantamweight World Champion belt on January 23, 2016, Belingon has won five consecutive matches, routing the best contenders that the division has to offer. For the Team Lakay fighter, he could finally become an MMA champion, the goal he has been chasing since he made his professional MMA debut on June 30, 2007.
“Becoming the champion has been my goal since my career started,” Belingon stated. “It is a lifelong dream for me. I need to win my next bout to turn my dream into a reality.”
“This is going to be a very exciting match,” the Team Lakay fighter added. “To take on an elite athlete like Martin, it will only be good for my experience. I look forward to testing my skills against him.”
Sharing the cage with a dynamic knockout artist like Nguyen, Belingon asserted that he likes his chances versus the two-division world champion and shared his thoughts as to how things would play out at “ONE: Reign of Kings.” For the Filipino superfighter, his Vietnamese-Australian opponent has “very good, high-level skills.”
“His wrestling is very strong, and so is his boxing,” Belingon said of Nguyen. “He is aggressive, and he punches with power.”
Belingon is known for his explosive striking, massive knockout power, and fearlessness to engage and is prepared to go the distance with Nguyen. The former said, “I am training very hard to make sure I am well-equipped with everything I need to face any situation.”
“If I have the opportunity to finish him, I will not hesitate to grab that chance,” Belingon added. “But I am prepared for this fight to go full five rounds as well.”
“ONE: Reign of Kings” will have two co-main events. Renzo Gracie, 51, of Brazil and Yuki “Sora” Kondo, 43, of Japan will compete in the welterweight division while Shannon “OneShin” Wiratchai, 29, of Thailand and Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, 35, of Japan will compete in the lightweight division.
In Belingon’s most recent bout, which was at “ONE: Heroes of Honor” on April 20, 2018 at the SM Mall of Asia Arena, he defeated Andrew Leone, 28, of the United States. Watch their bout here: