One FC returned to Singapore Indoor Stadium in Kallang, Singapore, on Friday for One FC 8: Kings and Championships, kicking off what could be a new era of supremacy for Dream, and now One FC, lightweight champion Shinya Aoki.
Kotetsu Boku vs. Shinya Aoki
It took him seven minutes, but it was seven minutes of domination by Shinya “Tobikan Judan” Aoki, as he captured the One FC lightweight championship.
Aoki immediately went to his bread and butter, not taking any chances on the feet with Kotetsu Boku. He drug Boku to the mat in the opening minute of the fight, working submissions ranging from a neck crank to a D’Arce choke to an armbar, but couldn’t find the finish.
The second round was much of the same. Aoki quickly took the fight to the ground, only this time, when he sprung to Boku’s back, he immediately secured a rear naked choke that left Boku with no option for escape.
Aoki’s goal in the fight with Boku was to finish, to keep the fight out of the hands of the judges. He did that. Now he moves on to his long-term goal.
“I am going to be ONE FC champion for a very long time,” Aoki told MMAWeekly.com. “I want to clean out the entire lightweight division in One FC. I don’t care who they sign; I am going to beat all of them.”
Brock Larson vs. Melvin Manhoef
Brock Larson and Melvin Manhoef didn’t provide the explosive finish that many had hoped for, but despite some lulls in the action, particularly at the start of each round, when the action did come, it was fast and furious.
Manhoef showed a few flashes of his powerful striking, landing a head kick in the opening round that had Larson running away in an attempt to recover.
There was some back-and-forth action in the second round, Manhoef trying to land with power again, but Larson got the better of the round, if only doing so in the waning moments. Larson controlled the latter portion of the round on the mat, securing an armbar that likely would have finished the fight if given another 10 seconds, but those seconds weren't there and Manhoef survived.
With Manhoef finally slowing a bit, Larson kicked things up a notch in the final round, putting Manhoef on the mat and dominating with his patented ground and pound game, a barrage of punches and elbows.
Larson couldn’t put Manhoef away, but his near finish in round two and domination in round three earned a unanimous nod from the judges.
“He hits like a truck. Never been hit so hard in my life. He had me rocked. I knew I had to be careful,” Larson said after the fight, explaining the lack of engagement, especially early in the fight.
Larson has bounced back and forth between welterweight and middleweight the past couple of years, but the strategy appears to be working, as his win over Manhoef at 185 pounds improved his winning streak to four consecutive bouts.
Jens Pulver vs. Masakatsu Ueda
Masakatsu Ueda was impressive in his win over former UFC champion Jens Pulver, securing his place in the One FC Bantamweight Grand Prix final opposite Kevin Belingon.
Following a slow feeling out process, Ueda scored a takedown in the first round and then dominated the rest of the fight. He out-positioned Pulver and peppered him with ground and pound, nearly securing a Kimura at the close of opening stanza.
The second round was even more dominant, as Ueda put Pulver on the mat even quicker, and soon opened a cut around his eye. Ueda kept hammering Pulver with punches until he finally opened him up for a fight ending D’Arce choke.
Thanh Vu vs. Kevin Belingon
Wushu stylist Kevin Belingon earned his spot in the One FC Bantamweight Grand Prix final with a victory over Thanh Vu.
Belingon took the fight to Vu from the opening bell, picking him apart with a variety of kicks, and then controlling position on the mat in the latter portion of the first round.
He picked up the pace in round two, rocking Vu early with a couple of head kicks. Noticing his opponent was hurt, Belingon pounced on the opportunity to unleash a brutal assault of knees and punch combinations. He dropped Vu to the mat and the referee immediately stepped in to stop the fight.
Vu argued that he was still trying to fight back, but it fell on deaf ears as Belingon won the fight.
Arnaud Lepont vs. Eddie Ng
Eddie Ng once again proved why he is considered one of the top lightweight prospects coming out of Asia with his sixth finish in his sixth victory.
Ng and Arnaud Lepont went back and forth over the first round of their fight. Ng was very aggressive in both his submission attempts and his striking, but Lepont countered well and remained busy off his back when Ng was able to get him to the mat.
Lepont scored a takedown early in the second, but once Ng worked his way up the cage and returned to his feet, there was no looking back. He scored a takedown of his own, quickly transitioned from guard to side control to mount, forcing Lepont to give up his back. Ng then slid off Lepont’s back and secured an armbar for a lightening quick finish.
It was an important victory for Ng, who made his return on Friday after more than a year out of competition.
It felt good to win, but it didn’t feel good getting there. “Honestly, it doesn’t feel too good because I got hit a few times,” said Ng, the swelling on his face increasing as he spoke.
The victory was Ng’s fourth consecutive, improving his overall record to 6-1, and maintaining his status as a top One FC lightweight contender.
One FC 8: Kings & Champions Results
-Shinya Aoki def. Kotetsu Boku by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) 2:01, R2
-Brock Larson def. Melvin Manhoef by Unanimous Decision, R3
-Masakatsu Ueda def. Jens Pulver by Submission (D’Arce Choke) at 3:52, R2
-Kevin Belingon def. Thanh Vu by TKO (Strikes) at 1:00, R2
-Eddie Ng def. Arnaud Lepont by Submission (Armbar) at 4:45, R2
-Leandro Issa def. Yusup Saddulaev by Unanimous Decision, R3
-Alex Silva def. Rene Catalan by Submission (Armbar) at 4:34, R1
-Bashir Ahmad def. Shannon Wiratchai by Unanimous Decision, R3
-Jake Butler def. Swain Cangco by TKO (Strikes) at 2:52, R1
-Chen Yun Ting def. Ronald Low by TKO (Strikes) at 3:58, R1