Asia’s number one sports brand is now grappling its way into the US market.
Mixed martial arts brand ONE Championship launched its US open workout tour in Los Angeles on Tuesday, greeted by hundreds on fans including a few Filipinos.
ONE will be televising its events on basic US cable channel TNT and through the Bleacher Report app.
As ONE looks to find its place in a market dominated by UFC, it’s brought in several former UFC fighters, and familiar faces also make up its front office.
Vice President’s Rich Franklin believes that American fight fans will enjoy watching many of the top asian fighters especially Pinoy fighters.
“The Lakay guys are very unorthodox styles and stuff like that and I think a style like that can be very appealing to a US audience you consistently seeing these guys lay spinning back kicks in the ring and stuff when the fans are exposed to these kinds of styles it’s gonna grab attention for sure.”
Of the 11 world champions three are Filipinos, including heavyweight champ Brandon Vera, team Lakbay members lightweight Eduard Folayang, and bantamweight Kevin Belingon.
Former UFC and Bellator lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez says he looks forward to challenging for the landslides title.
“I’m competitive by nature I’ve already been watching their fights Eduard, Timothy, Aioki all the guys in my division so I got my eyes on everyone.”
Johnson and Alvarez will make their ONE debuts on March 31st at ONE’s A New Era in Tokyo, where Folayang and Belingon will also defend their world titles.
Despite a larger television and online reach, ONE will also personally meet with fans, the One championship open workouts will head to America’s fight capital of Las Vegas later this week.