ONE FC 16 to feature Ben Askren’s inaugural bout against sambo champ Bakhtiyar Abbasov


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ONE FC has announced Ben Askren’s date for the next Singapore card on May 30, 2014: it will be ProFC Grand Prix Champion Bakhtiyar Abbasov of Azerbaijan.

Abbasov is a World Champion in Combat Sambo and Pankration, as well as a Azerbaijan National Champion in both judo and sambo. In MMA, he has spent much of his career at middleweight and has solid wins over Charles Andrade and Lazlo Soltesz. His last fights were in a one-night tournament where he demolished two lesser men by arm bar. Abbasov may not be a recognizable name to international MMA audiences, but this guy puts on crazy fights. He is fast, powerful, and stays active, which should be interesting if he can apply the game plan to grinder Askren. However, Abbasov’s comfort off his back might be his undoing.

Also announced for the card is a bout between Caros Fodor and Willy Ni, both of whom need to avenge their last performances at ONE FC. Fodor was manhandled by Vuyisile Colossa, and Ni’s comeback fight was anything but remarkable as Vincent Latoel made quick work of him. Evolve MMA’s Bruno Pucci will welcome Martin Nguyen from Australia. In the light heavyweight division, two prospects to watch face off as Jake Butler returns against Pane Haraki.

ONE FC 16 : Honor and Glory
May 30, 2014
Singapore Indoor Stadium

Ben Askren (12-0) vs Bakhtiyar Abbasov (11-2)

Caros ‘The Future’ Fodor (8-4) vs Willy Ni (15-8)

Bruno Pucci (3-0) vs Martin Nguyen (3-0)

Jake Butler (3-1) vs Pane ‘The Punisher’ Haraki (3-2)

Press release:


07 April 2014 – Singapore: ONE Fighting Championship™ (ONE FC), Asia’s largest mixed martial arts organization with a 90% market share, has confirmed it will return to Singapore on 30 May with a blockbuster event titled ONE FC: HONOR & GLORY. Undefeated welterweight and collegiate wrestling legend, Ben Askren, makes his highly anticipated ONE FC debut against Bakhtiyar Abbasov, who is currently riding a nine-fight winning streak. Veteran Caros Fodor takes on top prospect Willy Ni while Jake Butler returns to action against New Zealand’s Pane Haraki.

Tickets for ONE FC: HONOR & GLORY in Singapore are on sale now at Sports Hub Tix ( Ticket categories begin with the full Red Carpet and cageside experience for VIPs at S$348 followed by Arena S$148, Terrace S$68 and Balcony S$38. Prices exclude ticketing fee. Pre-sale packages are available from now till 27 April.

CEO of ONE Fighting Championship™ Victor Cui stated, “After months of anticipation, ONE FC will return to Singapore with another explosive night of world-class mixed martial arts action. Fans around the world have been eagerly awaiting the ONE FC debut of top welterweight, Ben Askren. He faces the toughest test of his career when he goes up against another top welterweight, Bakhtiyar Abbasov. ONE FC is redefining the mixed martial arts landscape and close to 12,000 fans will pack out the arena to witness history at ONE FC: HONOR & GLORY!”

Ben Askren is a legend in collegiate wrestling with four All-American awards. He finished his wrestling career at the University of Missouri with a record of 153-8. He has won 91 of those bouts with pins, third most in NCAA Division I history. He also wrestled in the US Olympics team in 2008 before transitioning to mixed martial arts. Since his mixed martial arts debut in 2009, he has won 12 bouts in a row in dominating fashion, winning multiple championships and earning recognition as one of the best welterweights in the world.

Bakhtiyar Abbasov is the best mixed martial artist to ever emerge from the eastern European country of Azerbaijan. He has defeated the best in Europe and has decided to come to Asia in search of new challenges. He will get all he can handle in wrestling legend Askren. The balanced knockouts and submission victories on his record is a testament to his versatility and predatory instincts, which will come in handy as he tries to become the first man in history to defeat Askren in a mixed martial arts bout. He has traditionally competed as a middleweight but has set his sights on the ONE FC Welterweight division.

Caros Fodor was one of the top Lightweights in Strikeforce where he ran up an impressive record and was on course for a title shot. A Muay Thai champion and submission grappling champion, he has gone to battle with some of the best in the business and wants to introduce himself to fight fans in Singapore with a spectacular performance.

Willy Ni is a Shooto veteran from the Netherlands. He has faced some of the best Lightweights in Europe, including British slugger, Dan Hardy. He is especially proficient with his grappling skills, having finished nine of his opponents by submission. He gets an opportunity to add another big name to his resume when he takes on the versatile and exciting Fodor.

Jake Butler has firmly established himself as one of the top light heavyweights in the division. He has earned all of his victories by finishes, and possesses some of the best wrestling acumen in the sport having honed his skills as the captain of the Princeton wrestling team. Butler has been unstoppable when he utilizes his signature wrestling techniques, but he has also improved his striking skills while training with Muay Thai world champions at Evolve MMA.

Pane Haraki is the best light heavyweight in New Zealand. A Muay Thai champion who has an arsenal of devastating kicks and elbows, he now gets an opportunity to shine on Asia’s largest stage and has a stiff test in front of him. This is a classic matchup of striker against grappler and Haraki will be determined to ensure that the striker reigns supreme.

Fans in Asia can catch all the action live on STAR Sports. Check your local listings. Also, fans from around the world can witness the action online via live streaming at The event will be available for purchase at just US$9.99.

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