ONE Championship: NextGen Preview

Stamp Fairtex stands in a corner of the ONE Championship ring.
Stamp Fairtex will fight Julie Mezabarba in the main event of “NextGen.” (ONE Championship)

ONE Championship will hold one of their last live events of the year on Friday, presenting six fights from the Singapore Indoor Stadium in Singapore.

While the event was originally set to have a kickboxing title fight in the main event, changes to the card earlier this week made that no longer the case. Instead, the card’s main focus will be the 115-pound Grand Prix, which determine its grand finalists on this card.

Here’s a preview of the entire show.

Main Card (8:30AM EDT / 8:30PM SGT) (Bleacher Report App / Youtube)

Bout 1: Beybulat Isaev vs. Bogdan Stoica (225 lbs) (Kickboxing Bout)

Kickboxing will open the card, as Beybulat Isaev and Bogdan Stoica will fight in ONE Championship’s light heavyweight class.

Isaev earned his first win in ONE earlier this year, scoring a first-round stoppage win over Mihajlo Kecojevic in January.

Stoica, a former GLORY Kickboxing fighter, will be making his ONE Championship debut. He has an experienced record in the sport, having fought over 50 times since debuting in 2009. He has notably fought UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya, losing a bout to him in 2016.

Bout 2: Miao Li Tao (6-4) vs. Jeremy Miado (9-4) (125 lbs) (MMA Bout)

ONE Championship veterans Miao Li Tao and Jeremy Miado will fight in a rematch on Friday.

Miado has fought on the ONE roster since 2017. He currently has a negative record in the promotion of three wins and four losses. His last fight, a win over Miao in 2019, saw him earn a first-round stoppage victory. Another win against Maio would even his promotional record for the first time.

Maio started his ONE run with a strong three-fight winning streak, but he has since struggled by losing three of his last four. He started his year by avenging a loss he took against Ryuto Sawada but has since taken a loss against Alex Silva.

Bout 3: Kirill Grishenko (4-0) vs. Dustin Joynson (6-0) (265 lbs) (MMA Bout)

Undefeated heavyweights Kirill Grishenko and Dustin Joynson will meet on Friday’s card.

Grishenko won his ONE Championship debut earlier this year, becoming the first fighter to defeat Oumar Kane (also known as “Reug Reug”) in MMA.

Grishenko is just a few days removed of no longer being a rookie in MMA. His first three pro wins came within a small window of time, earning victories in October and November of 2020.

Joynson was originally set to make his ONE debut in April, but his first appearance for the promotion is actually coming now. His last fight was roughly a year ago, picking up a decision victory over veteran Carl Seumanutafa on a CFFC card.

Bout 4: Anderson Braddock Silva vs. Iraj Azizpour (265 lbs) (Kickboxing Bout)

While Iraj Azizpour was initially set to challenge for a championship this weekend, he will instead face Anderson Braddock Silva in a kickboxing bout.

Azizpour was originally brought in as a short-notice opponent to face Roman Kryklia in the main event of “NextGen.” Since ONE Champion Kryklia withdrew from the card earlier this week, Azizpour’s chance at becoming a champion was taken away Friday. However, he at least gets to remain in the lineup with the new fight.

Azizpour will be making his ONE Championship debut in the fight. He is best known for his fights in the Chinese kickboxing promotion Kunlun Fight, where he fought Kryklia twice, resulting in a win and a loss each.

Silva will be fighting to break a losing streak on Friday. He has lost his past two kickboxing appearances in ONE, getting beat by Andrei Stoica and Murat Aygun. He appeared under MMA rules most recently, getting submitted by grappling ace Marcus Buchecha last month.

Bout 5: Ritu Phogat (6-1) vs. Jenelyn Olsim (5-2) (ONE MMA Atomweight Grand Prix) (115 lbs)

In the first of two Grand Prix bouts Friday, Ritu Phogat will fight Jenelyn Olsim. The tournament has been nearly gutted in recent weeks, as quarter-final winners Ham Seo Hee and Itsuki Hirata had to withdraw from their respective bouts.

Hirata is being replaced by Olsim in this specific fight. The undefeated prospect announced her withdrawal from the tournament earlier this week, citing a non-COVID-19 related fever as why she left the lineup.

Olsim’s entrance into the tournament gives her a chance to build upon a strong year thus far. She has scored two wins since being called up to ONE’s flagship event series earlier this year, submitting Maira Mazar and earning a decision win over Bi Nguyen.

Phogat won in the first round of the tournament, defeating the experienced Meng Bo via unanimous decision.

Bout 6: Stamp Fairtex (6-1) vs. Julie Mezabarba (9-2-1) (ONE MMA Atomweight Grand Prix) (115 lbs)

The main event of Friday’s card will see Stamp Fairtex face Julie Mezabarba for a spot in the finals of ONE Championship’s 115-pound grand prix.

Stamp avenged a loss in the opening round of the tournament, earning a split decision victory over Alyona Rassohyna. She had fought Rassohyna earlier in the year, taking a controversial submission loss in that instance.

Mezabarba became the bracket’s official alternate last month, scoring a decision win over veteran Mei Yamaguchi. The fight was Mezabarba’s promotional debut, which came after a strong five-fight winning streak from the past three years.

CORRECTION: A previous version of the article stated that “NextGen” will be ONE Championship’s final event of the year. This error has been corrected.

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