It may have lasted more than 10 seconds, but “The Underdog” Li Kai Wen scored another incredible knockout to continue his meteoric rise up the featherweight division.
On Friday, 13 July, the Chinese superstar knocked out Emilio “The Honey Badger” Urrutia in an action-filled three-round war at ONE: PURSUIT OF POWER, which excited the crowd inside the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The 22-year-old Tianjin, China native measured his opponent with leg kicks to begin the bout, while Urrutia opted to use punches.
However, it was Li’s punches that made the biggest impact in the opening frame.
A right cross, followed by a left hook, knocked down the 31-year-old American, and Li continued attacking with a flurry of punches and knees.
“The Honey Badger,” however, managed to recover, and even connected with a double-leg takedown.
Once they got back to their feet, Li landed another huge right hand that rocked his foe yet again.
While Urrutia was able to survive the onslaught and get back to his feet, he was visibly wobbly. “The Underdog” tried to take advantage by throwing haymakers, but the bell sounded to end the stanza.
In the second round, Urrutia, a SFC Bantamweight Champion who trains out of Tiger Muay Thai in Phuket, came out with a higher defensive stance – clearly an adjustment to protect himself from Li’s punches.
Meanwhile, the Tianjin Top Team product looked to build upon his momentum as he stalked the American.
An outside leg kick from Urrutia proved effective against Li, and seemed to have turned the tide of the match. “The Honey Badger” landed his punches and continued staggering his nemesis with leg kicks. He could not take down “The Underdog” though, as the Chinese warrior proved elusive and stayed on his feet.
Entering the final round, Uruttia gained more confidence and looked to dictate the pace.
However, Li changed the complexion of the contest with a perfectly-timed left hook, which put “The Honey Badger” on rubbery legs.
The Chinese combatant saw his opening, and connected with a slew of heavy punches to knock Urrutia off his feet. He followed up with a volley of strikes, which prompted the referee to call the bout at the 1:22 mark of the final round.
Li, who returned to action just three weeks after his record-breaking 10-second knockout of Rodian Menchavez in Macau, gets another highlight-reel victory on his résumé.
He improves his record to 9-4, and continues his quest for a title shot rematch against ONE Featherweight World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen.