Last December, UFC veteran Brandon Vera won the vacant One Championship heavyweight title with a thunderous first-round knockout of late-replacement Paul Cheng. Almost a full year later, Vera finally defended that title. He did so against the 43-year-old Hideki “Big Body” Sekine – who is also nicknamed “Shrek” – in the main event of One Championship: Age of Domination in the Philippines.
Sekine, for those unfamiliar, has a build like Rousimar Palhares, which provides him an incredible amount of leverage when locking up arms and legs for submissions. At just 5’7, however, he surrendered a massive height and reach disadvantage to his towering opponent.
These physical disadvantages were on full display as Sekine attempted to navigate a striking battle with the Muay Thai specialist Vera. Though he was able to lock up a clinch for a moment, he had an incredibly difficult time getting close enough to the champion to drag things to the mat. Eventually, he paid for his inability to ground the fight, as he was first wobbled by a head kick, and then polished off with a kick to the body and a swarm of ground strikes. The stoppage occured at 3:11 of the first round.
With the win, Vera improves to 3-0 since being released from the UFC, with all of those wins occurring in the first round. The quality of his competition outside the UFC, of course, has been somewhat questionable. Regardless, he’s now 15-7 overall.
Sekine, meanwhile, experienced his first pro loss against Vera. After beginning his career with 7-straight wins, he’s now 7-1 in sum.
Also on this latest One Championship card, unheralded bantamweight great Bibiano Fernandes defended his strap with a split decision defeat of Reece McLaren, while Brazil’s Leandro Ataides scored an unforgettable, flying knee KO over Mohamed Ali.
What do you think of Brandon Vera’s latest win? Sound off, Penn Nation!