Featherweight contender Garry Tonon is unstressed by Russia’s massive influx into the ONE Championship. In fact, the great American-born wrestler embraces it and looks forward to the challenge.
Russian fighters are making a statement in other divisions, including Ilya Freymanov and Saygid Izagakhmaev in the lightweight division. Last weekend, Shamil Gasanov became the latest fighter in the country to go big.
At ONE on Prime Video 3, Gasanov scored an impressive submission just 2:09 into the first round against Kim Jae Woong. This victory earned him a performance bonus of $50,000. “The Cobra” then named Tang Kai and Garry Tonon as potential opponents for their next release.
“The Lion Killer” heeded the call and responded on Twitter with an element of nationalism, writing:
“@shamilcobra says I can’t last 5 minutes with him. What do you think? Do I succumb to the Russian Mixed Martial Arts invasion🇷🇺? Or do I break his leg, use it to fly our flag and make Ronald Reagan and the American people proud 🇺🇸💪? @onechampionship.”
Shamil Gasanov vs. Garry Tonon in a featherweight showdown?
Shamil Gasanov is undefeated in professional MMA. “The Cobra” impressed many new international fans in its promotional debut at ONE on Prime Video 3 with a quick win.
The Russian-born athlete is a double European grappling champion and world grappling champion. With a 79% success rate per submission, “The Cobra” is an apt name.
“The Lion Killer” Garry Tonon, meanwhile, is already considered a great wrestler. The American is 6-1 in MMA and 72-26-2 in grappling competitions. He has won several BJJ tournaments at national and international levels.
After competing in the 2022 ADCC World Championship, Tonon will now focus on MMA again as he looks to add more limbs to his mantle.
The American grappler sees himself at the forefront of defending American pride. Don’t be surprised if “The Lion Killer” soon looks to challenge himself against the dangerous Russian.