New ONE Championship signees Demetrious Johnson and Eddie Alvarez are in Singapore to make their first public appearances with their new employer, and it turns out their paths in the promotion will be similar.
ONE Championship officials today revealed that both fighters will be featured in a pair of upcoming world grand prix tournaments, in both the flyweight and lightweight divisions.
“ONE Championship is a different organization,” ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong said. “ONE Championship is for martial artists, by martial artists. Every fight promotion in the world wants to put on a fight. In ONE Championship, we want to build and unleash real-life superheroes who ignite the world with hope, strength, dreams, inspiration, and courage. We want real martial artists to stand up.
“Martial arts is not about fighting and violence. It is about unleashing your greatness in life. This is the real beauty of martial arts. I want the entire world to look at our heroes and be inspired through their lives because they bare their souls to the world with every triumph and every failure.”
Debut dates and opponents were not announced for the new ONE Championship athletes, but “Mighty Mouse” aid the opportunity to compete in a grand prix will fulfill a dream he’s long held.
“I spent seven years in North America fighting the best in the world,” Johnson saiud. “I’ve never traveled to Asia to fight the best. I think now is the perfect time to do it.
“Now that they just announced a world grand prix for the flyweight division, it’s has always been a dream of mine to actually compete in Asia in a world grand Prix. The biggest thing that you can expect from me for coming over here to compete in Asia is that I’ll do my best. I am taking no shortcuts.”
Meanwhile, Alvarez said he’s happy to return to Asia, where he previously qualified for a DREAM world grand prix final but was unable to compete the championship contest.
“It was in Asia where I made a name for myself and started my career,” Alvarez said. “Everything has come full circle for me. I can’t say how excited and grateful I am to be part of the ONE Championship family. This is where true martial arts lives.
“I’ve been away from Asia so long. It’s good to be back. I feel like I found my way again with ONE Championship. I can respect my opponents, and I can go in and fight like a man. I know my lifelong martial arts journey will be truly appreciated here.”
Johnson and Alvarez will be guests at “ONE Championship 83: Heart of the Lion,” which takes place Friday at Singapore Indoor Stadium. Prelims stream on Facebook and Twitter prior to a main card that streams globally on the ONE Championship app.
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
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