ONE Championship could soon have a triple title holder in Martin Nguyen.
Forget Conor McGregor and his measly two titles. ONE Championship featherweight and lightweight champion Martin Nguyen is set to drop down to bantamweight and challenge for a third simultaneous belt. In a press release Wednesday, the Asian MMA powerhouse announced that the champ vs. multi-division champ fight will go down at its upcoming Iron Will card in Thailand. There, Nguyen will challenge current 135lb champion Bibiano Fernandes for bantamweight gold.
In Wednesday’s release, Chatri Sityodtong, Chairman and CEO of ONE Championship, stated that “I am super excited to announce another huge world title bout as reigning ONE Bantamweight World Champion Bibiano Fernandes will face two-division ONE Featherweight & Lightweight World Champion Martin Nguyen at ONE: IRON WILL. It’s a tremendous matchup, and one that the whole world wants to see. I have no doubt that these two warriors will be putting on a great show for everyone watching live in Bangkok.”
Nguyen (10-1), picked up ONE’s featherweight crown when he defeated Marat Gafurov in August. He followed that up in November by finishing Eduard Folayang for the lightweight title. Now on a six fight win streak, Nguyen has not lost since 2015. All six wins have come via finish.
Bibiano Fernandes (21-3), who at one point was flirting with a UFC run (the UFC even announced they’d signed him), has been a standout for ONE. After signing with the promotion in 2012, walking away from the UFC’s offer, he has gone undefeated. Claiming the interim bantamweight title, then undisputed crown, Fernandes has defended his belt six times.
ONE Championship: Iron Will takes place on March 24 at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand.