Liam Harrison heralds ONE Championship as UFC’s genuine competition
ONE Championship and the UFC have long been recognized as the titans in the world of martial arts, but Liam Harrison sees a shift in the balance of power.
He believes that ONE’s strategic decision to expand its offerings beyond MMA, particularly into Muay Thai and kickboxing, has given the Asian promotion a significant edge over its Western counterpart.
“ONE and the UFC are the top two organizations at the moment. Obviously, the UFC is one of the biggest fight promotions in the world, and it always will be, but ONE is coming forward with it,” Harrison said.
In 2018, ONE made a bold move to open its doors to various stand-up disciplines. Five years later, the world’s largest martial arts organization has become the premier destination for elite strikers.
Its roster consists of the who’s who in both Muay Thai and kickboxing. This list includes the likes of Rodtang Jitmuangnon, Superlek Kitamoo9, Jonathan Haggerty, Chingiz Allazov, and Superbon Singha Mawynn.
In 2022, ONE formed a groundbreaking partnership with the Royal Thai Army. This led to the inception of the weekly ONE Friday Fight series held at the iconic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, throughout 2023.
Harrison is fully convinced that this venture has paid off handsomely for ONE, especially in its head-to-head competition with the UFC.
“ONE is coming out with the striking side. We’ve got these ONE Friday Fights events every week, and they’re getting massive names for people like Rodtang. They’re becoming worldwide names,” he said.
“So, I think what ONE has done, especially for Muay Thai and striking this year, has been unbelievable. I think it’s incredible what they’ve achieved.”
ONE Championship expands beyond fighters like Liam Harrison
ONE Championship has built on its success in the striking arts with fighters like Liam Harrison. Now it has extended its reach into submission grappling.
The promotion aims to replicate the same magic that has been characterized by its efforts to push Muay Thai and kickboxing at the mainstream level.
Since 2022, ONE has crowned four World Champions in submission grappling. They are a cast of outstanding athletes such as Mikey Musumeci, Tye and Kade Ruotolo, and Danielle Kelly.