ONE Featherweight World Champion Thanh Le has been enjoying his reign as the new divisional king, but he could soon find himself tested by a top grappler in ONE Championship.
None other than ONE Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong stated that a challenge from Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon could be the next logical move in the featherweight division, especially since the former Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu star is undefeated in the organization.
Le is intrigued about the matchup for his own reasons.
“Garry is a super-dangerous grappler, obviously. That’s always an interesting matchup, right? We have a grappler-versus-striker type of situation,” he said.
Having said that, Le isn’t discrediting Tonon’s striking, nor is he downplaying his own grappling abilities. Overall, he feels the two would be evenly matched no matter where the bout unfolds.
“Garry’s comfortable on the feet,” Le continued. “He’s getting better with his striking. You’ll see that he has some confidence in the way he moves his head and the way he closes the distance.
“I don’t think if he stands with me for 10 seconds, he goes straight to sleep. And I don’t think if I grapple with him for 10 seconds, I go straight to getting heel hooked or submitted.
“It’s an interesting matchup because we’re both competent in the other art, but we’re so dominant and such a specialist in our specific realms that it presents a problem for the other person.”
Moreover, the ONE Featherweight World Champion believes his dynamism will present a lot of challenges for the American should they meet in the Circle.
“You’ve got a lot of fighters that give you the movement but don’t bring the heat. And then you’ve got a lot of guys that bring some heat but don’t move well and can’t vacate spaces, disappear, cut angles, and make you miss on shots. So, I think it’s a weird mix that I bring in,” Le said.
Now that ONE’s Chairman and CEO has hinted at a desire to make this fight happen, Le is eager to showcase his skills against a man with a very different style. Ultimately, he knows the fans would be the biggest winners.
“I think it’s going to bring a big, exciting clash of styles. That’s always interesting, fun, and motivating, to be able to fight a specialist in an area that I’m not a specialist in,” Le said.
Download the ONE Super App for more martial arts action!
Read More From ONE Championship: