ONE Championship: Big Bang 2 Preview

Chen Rui ONE Championship
Chen Rui vs Roman Alvarez Credit: ONE Championship

The premier Asian MMA organization returns with ONE Championship: Big Bang 2 on Friday. The main card will feature two kickboxing bouts, and one Muay Thai bout. In addition to those, there will be three mixed martial arts fights mixed in, offering up a little bit for everyone.

Let’s take a closer look at those competing in MMA. Opening the main card, young prospects will square off when Ali Motamed (7-4) faces Rui Chen (8-1). Next, the experienced Tetsuya Yamada (26-7-2) takes on Korean lightweight Jae Woong Kim (10-4). Then, the last MMA bout of the night takes place between the undefeated Masoud Safari (6-0-1) and the heavy handed Anderson Silva (3-1).

Ali Motamed vs. Rui Chen

Fast twitch strikers are always exciting to watch, and both Motamed and Chen share that trait. This should be a bout circled on fan’s calendars as these two strikers represent some of the sharpest in ONE Championship. Each has different specializations. First, Motamed predominantly uses feints to set up his strikes. Conversely, Chen uses feints too but definitely focuses more on footwork. For example, in REBEL FC 8 against grappling specialist Yad Singh, Chen was constantly moving. Similar to the way Dominic Cruz moves, Chen is effective in getting his head off the center line. Overall this fight promises to be aesthetically pleasing, and certainly has the chance to steal the show at ONE Championship: Big Bang 2.

Tetsuya Yamada vs. Jae Woong Kim

Southpaw Yamada presents nice feints to set up his vicious body kick. However, he also uses range finding kicks to let his hands go. Specifically, he displayed this skill in a headliner against Anton Kuivanen at Cage 38 Helsinki. Another reason his strikes are so effective is due to keeping his hands low to disguise his attacks. Facing the tricky striker, Kim will need to either close the distance, or modulate range to get the best result. Yamada likes mid or long ranges to launch his power kicks, but if the gap is closed, the power will fade. Additionally, a viable route to victory for Kim is to keep Yamada on the back foot, something most strikers tend to struggle with.

Featured ONE Championship: Big Bang 2 – Masoud Safari vs. Anderson Silva

A stand and bang striker with a marauding style, Safari is an imposing figure inside the cage. Specifically, his left high kick is one of his most powerful strikes, and he displayed it well against Maziar Yari at IFC 2 in the main event. Also a potent counter striker, Safari likes to strike from close distances, making his kicks hard to anticipate. Despite mainly competing in kickboxing, Brazilian heavyweight Silva is a force in the division. Similar to Safari’s style of counter striking, Silva is adept at the slip and rip. Since he is able to lean back to get his head off the center line, his counters are deadly, especially his overhand right. One thing is for sure, at ONE Championship: Big Bang 2 these two heavyweights will be throwing bombs at each other.