ONE Update: State of Warriors Preview, Brandon Vera Next Fight Set

ONE Update: State of Warriors Preview, Brandon Vera Next Fight Set

All eyes turn to Yangon, Myanmar on Friday as ONE Championship returns to Thuwunna Indoor Stadium for ONE: State of Warriors.

Oct 4, 2016 by Jim Edwards
ONE Update: State of Warriors Preview, Brandon Vera Next Fight Set

ONE: State Of Warriors This Friday

All eyes turn to Yangon, Myanmar on Friday as ONE Championship returns to Thuwunna Indoor Stadium for ONE: State of Warriors.

In the main event, ONE strawweight world champion Yoshitaka Naito will defend his belt for the first time against undefeated Filipino contender Joshua Pacio. Naito won the title back in May against Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke at ONE: Kingdom of Champions via fourth-round submission.

Naito looked unstoppable when winning the title back in May, however, his opponent on Friday night, Pacio, is determined to bring the title back to the Philippines and keep his own unbeaten record intact.

"I will do whatever it takes," Pacio told "If it's five rounds, I will give it my best and make sure that I will not make a mistake. I am sure that October 7 is the night I will get the belt and bring it home to the Philippines.

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"Bringing that gold strap here to the Philippines and to my family would make me happy, because I know I would make them proud and the Filipino people proud, too."

Also in action on Friday evening, Myanmar national hero Aung La N Sang will return home, with the hopes of the country resting squarely on his shoulders as he faces Polish powerhouse Michal Pasternak in a massive bout for the ONE middleweight division.

Brandon Vera set to defend title in December

After winning the ONE Championship heavyweight title last December at ONE Champion: Spirit of Champions, Brandon Vera has finally had the date set for his first title defense -- December 2.

Vera's title defense will take place 356 days after he beat Paul Cheng via KO in just 26 seconds in Pasay City, Philippines last year.

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The Standard news outlet confirmed on September 29 that a fight for Vera is in the works but that an opponent is yet to be set.

ONE Chairman reaffirms the differences between ONE and the UFC

After ONE Championship CEO Victor Cui spoke out last month about the differences between the UFC and ONE Championship, chairman Chatri Sityodtong reaffirmed the message to the International Business Times earlier this week.

"UFC is a sport, ONE Championship is martial arts. UFC is marketed as a sport, as fighting, with violence, bravado, and arrogance," Sityodtong said. "Look at the stars of UFC. (Conor) McGregor, (Ronda) Rousey, Jon Jones. They are aggressive personalities, very loud, driving Rolls-Royces and disrespecting their opponents. That is the exact wrong recipe to succeed in Asia.

"You look at perhaps the biggest fighting hero in Asia, Manny Pacquiao. Someone who is a super-humble, street kid from Manila who made it to the global stage. Asians value humility, honor, courage, discipline -- these are what our heroes are. At ONE Championship, we celebrate true values of martial arts, our heroes embody those values.

"UFC has done an amazing job. What they do works extremely well in the Western Hemisphere, but it just doesn't work in Asia."