For the third time in 2018, ONE Championship™ (ONE), the largest global sports media property in Asian history, brought their exciting brand of martial arts action to Philippine soil and once again, it brought the house down. “ONE: Reign of Kings” was held at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, Metro Manila on July 27, 2018.
Featuring a stacked card from top to bottom, “ONE: Reign of Kings” was headlined by top Filipino bantamweight contender Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon of Team Lakay and reigning ONE Featherweight and Lightweight World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen. After five rounds, the hometown hero became the new ONE Interim Bantamweight World Champion.
Aside from the massive main event that featured two of ONE Championship’s top athletes, a handful of other big names also saw action at “ONE: Reign of Kings.” Among them were martial arts legends Renzo Gracie and Yuki “Sora” Kondo and former ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landsliade” Folayang.
From as early as the opening bout of the night, fans had already filled up more than half of the seats at the state-of-the-art arena in Manila, and even as event night progressed, more people continued to gather outside the arena, hoping to make their way in to catch the action. By the end of the night, the SM Mall of Asia Arena was packed to the rafters with passionate martial arts fans.
“The Philippines has always been one of the best countries to hold our events, so it’s no surprise that ‘ONE: Reign of Kings’ in Manila produced that kind of turnout,” said ONE Championship founder and Chairman Chatri Sityodtong. “Filipino fans are some of the most passionate fans, not just in Asia, but in the whole world, and that’s because every Filipino, deep inside, has that warrior spirit.”
“They celebrate and they embrace that warrior spirit that they see in their heroes,” Sityodtong added. “Look at Manny Pacquiao, who’s possibly the biggest Filipino martial arts hero of them all, look at guys like Eduard Folayang, look at their new champion, Kevin Belingon, these guys are warriors and these guys are champions, and that’s why they’re beloved in the Philippines.”
The fourth and final ONE Championship event in the Philippines in 2018 is “ONE: Quest of Champions,” which will take place at the SM Mall of Asia Arena on November 23, 2018. Meanwhile, here is a “ONE: Reign of Kings” recap: