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I can be the new face of MMA in the United States, says Adriano Moraes

LockerRoom Team
26 July 2022

Adriano Moraes’ established his popularity in Asia ever since he won the ONE Flyweight World Championship in 2014. Now, he can make himself even more popular with North American fight fans in his rematch with mixed martial arts legend Demetrious Johnson.

Moraes and Johnson will face each other again for the ONE Flyweight World Title at ONE Fight Night 1, which airs live on Amazon’s Prime Video on 26 August at 9 pm EDT (27 August India). 

It will be ONE’s first card on Prime Video, providing enormous reach for viewers in the United States and Canada. So, it's no wonder the Brazilian is thrilled to be headlining the event.

“I believe this partnership between ONE and Prime Video will be fantastic for MMA fans and everyone who loves martial arts. And for me, it will be an honor to [compete in] the main event on the first Prime Video broadcast. I am very grateful once again,” Moraes said.

He turned heads when he became the first fighter to knock out the mixed martial arts legend in Johnson at “ONE on TNT I” in April 2021. 

Defeating “Mighty Mouse” for a second time will make him a household name in the U.S.

It’s hard to think Johnson will lose twice to the same opponent, so pulling off that feat will elevate Moraes’ status within the combat sports community.

“I have been an ATT athlete for seven years. I have lived in the United States for seven years. It is already my second home. They welcomed me very well here, and I have a lot of fans here in America,” Moraes said.

“I’m a very disciplined MMA and jiu-jitsu athlete, and that’s why I believe I can be the new face of MMA in the United States. I am always waiting for new opportunities and ask God to show me the way. If that’s His will, I’ll surely take it.”

However, he is anticipating fierce resistance from Johnson because he brings something new to the table that enables him to perform better against opponents the second time around. 

Therefore, Moraes might not be able to repeat the knee to Johnson’s face that finished the American in their first contest. Though the stakes are higher this time, he will look for an early finish on the canvas.

“Demetrious Johnson is very smart, very tough, and I know he’s coming in hungry for this rematch. I’m training a lot. I want to show my evolution as an athlete, so I believe I can get a submission in the fourth round,” he said.

In the meantime, ONE Championship returns to action with ONE 160: Ok vs. Lee II on 26 August at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. ONE Flyweight World Champion Ok Rae Yoon will defend the belt in a rematch with former titleholder Christian Lee. Meanwhile, Thanh Le will put the ONE Featherweight World Championship against top-ranked contender Tang Kai.


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