Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A Battle for Asian Supremacy: One FC and Legend FC Go Head-to-Head this Weekend

Two fast-rising Asian promotions will stage major events this weekend. Thailand-based One FC and China's Legend FC have events scheduled for Saturday, February 11. Both organizations are primed for leading roles on the Asian mixed martial arts scene. One FC is set to present their second show, which boasts familiar names like Bob Sapp, while Legend FC looks to make their seventh go-round with two title fights rounding out the card.

So, it's definitely a big MMA weekend in Asia, but who will fans be watching? Better yet, which show is worth watching???

Well, it all boils down to what you're looking for, and between these two cards, you have two very different options.

For One FC, the name Bobb Sapp says it all. I'll do all I can to avoid using the term "Freak Show" in describing One FC 2, but I find that hard to do when describing any show that Sapp appears on these days. It's very obvious that One FC is pressed for mainstream appeal. When they first stepped on the scene last year, One FC initiated a huge media push. They were being touted as "the next Pride", a description they took much glory in. But, to be frank, One FC has not lived up to the hype...

When you look at Legend FC's card, as well as all of their previous cards, it is clear that this organization is carefully selecting their fighter when arranging their cards. The matchmaking aspect of Legend FC is not concerned with "Freak Show" appeal. One example is last October's Jadamba Narantungalag vs. Adrian Pang bout a fight that was widely overlooked for 2012 'fight of the year' honors. Narantugnalag vs. Pang was an all out, action-packed slug fest, and it really opened my eyes to what Legend FC. This organization isn't into punchlines and gimmicks. They let the competition speak for itself.

I realize that Legend FC has a few more cards under the belt than One FC, but One FC has simply devoted too much energy to the marketing aspect of their business model, and looking at the card, I'm forced to say that One FC's next event, much like their last, is all hype. One FC could take a real business lesson from Legend FC, and stick to the slow grown model that continues to fuel the emergence of LFC.

Besides, One FC's PPV will run you $10. LFC, on the other hand, is free. Now you make your pick!

Anyway, our good friend Johor Bahru at MMA News Asia does an excellent job of breaking down the two event cards.

For entertainment purposes these cards should both get the crowd moving but if we start to delve deeper, I would have trouble making a case for ONE FC’s card against Legends based on fighter quality.

ONE FC have four Indonesian fighters none of whom have any current MMA experience of any level, a couple of Malaysian’s who have in one case only fought in local events and the other who has just had his first fight in six years. And a URCC champion who will tackle a much lower level fighter and will walk to victory.

The stand out fight is Alex Silva against Geje Eustaquio, which is a good enough match up to make a main card at either event.

Legends card as we have just seen, features many fighters who have fought at high level events in the Philippines, Australia and elsewhere, including a few ex Martial Combat fighters (the precursor to ONE FC which boasted ‘Asia’s Ultimate Mixed Martial Arts Fighting Championship’). Outside of three fighters Silva, Eustaquio and Rafols, I can see nobody on the ONE FC undercard who could fight at Legend and have a realistic chance of winning.

This may be the weakness in the early days of ONE FC as they try to spread their events around the region and seem to feel they have to please a local crowd by picking local fighters. Fighters who under any other circumstances do not really belong on the fight card of an event of an organisation that claims it’s ‘Asia’s Most Prestigious Mixed Martial Arts Event’.

Legend of course does not have to please any local crowd beyond providing exciting fights and they seem to be able to access good quality fighters including champions from other Austral-Asian organisations just as ONE FC are able to do.

If ONE FC do get to Manila this year, to Macau (Legends home turf) and to Bangkok as they have been talking of, well…… then shit could get serious!

For now on this undercard at least it’s the longer established organisation that has the quality and the braggart new boy who has got his ass spanked.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Guys, Many thanks for being kind enough to use and more importantly acknowledge my article. However a couple of points on that, as I like to keep the facts straight. My article ( is only talking about the undercard (I do cover the main cards on other posts) Also, Both undercards can be viewed for FREE on the internet Via facebook (ONEFC) and You Tube (Legend) - On the main cards I had both organisations fairly even except for the joke that is Gracie Vs Sapp, A Gracie that did nothing for the family name on his one and only UFC showing and Sapp who for his last seven fights is 1-6 ! After this win or loose Sapp will be off to Super Fight League, India's bright new organisation to be a headliner - imagine a 1-7 headliner!