ONE Championship is getting its 2018 calendar of events started with another thrilling show in Indonesia.
The promotion will hold its first spectacle of the new year, ONE: KINGS OF COURAGE, live from the Jakarta Convention Center on Saturday, 20 January.
In the main event, Singapore’s Tiffany “No Chill” Teo is scheduled to meet Chinese martial arts prodigy “The Panda” Xiong Jing Nan for the inaugural ONE Women’s Strawweight World Championship.
ONE Championship never disappoints when it comes to non-stop martial arts action, especially with so many proven finishers in the organization. With that in mind, here are three knockout artists who will be gunning to steal the show.
Xiong Jing Nan
China’s Xiong Jing Nan (13-1) is as fierce as they come on the feet. Nicknamed “The Panda,” she is a former professional boxer and a China Open BJJ Champion. While the 30-year-old certainly has the submission finesse, she also has an affinity for landing the KO.
In fact, over half of her thirteen victories come by way of strikes. She demonstrated this punching power in her promotional debut last month at ONE: WARRIORS OF THE WORLD, where she stopped the Philippines’ April Osenio in the very first round with a storm of fierce punches.
The hype around “The Panda” is real, and at ONE: KINGS OF COURAGE, she will square off against a fellow boxer in Tiffany Teo. You might not want to blink when this main event goes down.
Nova União is known as one of the world’s most feared gyms when it comes to strikers. They are renowned for their precision, power, and especially their kicks. And though he is highly-regarded as a five-time BJJ world champion, Leandro Ataides (10-3) is quickly becoming known for his knockout ability.
The 31-year-old Brazilian, who also spent a few years under the guidance of Evolve MMA’s many Muay Thai world champions, has won half of his bouts via knockout or TKO. That includes his 47-second destruction of Japan’s Tatsuya Mizuno, and his flying knee knockout of Mohamed Ali, which earned him the honor of ONE’s Best Knockout of 2016.
Most importantly, the fact Ataides has not overly-relied on his world-class submission game shows the tremendous self-confidence in his striking ability. At ONE: KINGS OF COURAGE, he draws Vitaly Bigdash (9-1), who himself is as dangerous as they come.
Russia’s Vitaly Bigdash (9-1) may be displaying more of his grappling as of late, but the 33-year-old originally made his name in the striking department.
Having started out in his martial arts journey with Kyokushin karate, Bigdash won several tournaments in tough discipline before transitioning to Muay Thai in 2012. In that same year, the Rostov-on-Don native made his cage debut, and racked up eight consecutive victories en route to capturing the ONE Middleweight World Championship in October 2015.
Of his nine wins, four of them have by strikes, including his thrilling knockout of ONE Middleweight World Champion Igor Svirid to capture the title. In that bout which has come to be widely-regarded as the most exciting in ONE history, Bigdash showed both his ability to absorb and dispense damage, coming back from several Svirid knockdowns to TKO the champion.
Although he has since dropped the belt to Aung La N Sang, Bigdash is on the comeback trail, and the first opponent in his path to redemption is Leandro Ataides.