WATCH: Five of the year’s best finishes from ONE Championship’s Filipino stars

Published December 29, 2021, 2:58 PM

by Manila Bulletin Sports

Team Lakay’s Stephen Loman (Stephen Loman’s Facebook page)

ONE Championship experienced a thrilling 2021. 

And while impressive victories were abundant throughout the year, it’s the memorable finishes that will live on in organization’s highlight reel for years to come. 

Having said that, let’s look back at some of the most impressive finishes by fighters from the Philippines. 

5. Jenelyn Olsim vs Maira Mazar 

Submission wins are rare for Filipino athletes because they’re more known as devastating strikers. 

But Jenelyn Olsim completed one of the most stunning finishes of the year during her ONE debut by forcing Brazilian grappler Maira Mazar to tap out. 

Despite Mazar’s resistance, Jerry Olsim’s younger sister locked a power guillotine choke out of nowhere. While it was a textbook move, its swift execution made it worthy of inclusion on our list. 

4. Lito Adiwang vs Namiki Kawahara 

Lito “Thunder Kid” Adiwang made amends for his first loss in ONE with an explosive bounce-back performance. 

The pride of Baguio City vented his frustration on former DEEP Champion Namiki Kawahara with a booming left hook that knocked the newcomer out. 

Adiwang landed the strike perfectly on an incoming Kawahara, proving that he could generate plenty of power in his hands. 

3. Joshua Pacio vs Yosuke Saruta III 

Joshua “The Passion” Pacio promised to put a lid on his trilogy with Yosuke “The Ninja” Saruta in style, and he delivered.  

The ONE Strawweight World Champion caught one of the Japanese man’s kicks and responded with an overhand right, which sent “The Ninja” backpedaling.  

“The Passion” chased Saruta and dismantled him with left and right hooks, prompting the referee to stop the contest. Pacio’s dominant TKO victory was his record-setting ninth win in the division. 

2. Mark Abelardo vs Emilio Urrutia 

Mark “Tyson” Abelardo connected at will for most of his match against Emilio “The Honey Badger” Urrutia. But it was a tomahawk elbow near the end of round two that ended the Bangkok-based American’s night. 

The Fil-Kiwi striker controlled the bout from start to finish as the American offered no resistance against Abelardo’s stand-up game. 

Abelardo’s flurry of elbows almost finished the contest during the first round, but the 35-year-old competitor somehow survived. But those strikes primed Abelardo for a one-shot elbow finish in the second round. 

The finish was so emphatic that ONE commentator Mitch Chilson gave him a new nickname – Elbowlardo. 

1. Stephen Loman vs Yusup Saadulaev 

Topping this list is none other than Stephen “The Sniper” Loman, who made a rousing debut at ONE: WINTER WARRIORS II by knocking out Yusup “Maestro” Saadulaev in the first round. 

The five-time mixed martial arts champion perfectly timed a crushing counter left hand as Saadulaev lunged forward, ending the night early. 

Loman’s power sent the #3-ranked bantamweight face-first into the canvas. Saadulaev tried to regain his bearings but to no avail. 

Read More From ONE Championship:  

Joshua Pacio Shakes Off 2021 Pressures, Looks Forward To Big 2022 

Jarred Brooks ‘Seeing Tunnel Vision’ As He Aims For Pacio In 2022 

Buoyed By Stellar Debut, Jhanlo Sangiao’s Goal Is World Title Gold 

 
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