Garry Tonon

Garry Tonon – “(Striking) is very foreign territory for me”

International martial arts superstar Garry Tonon of the United States is set to see action this Friday night, 27 July on the main card of ONE: REIGN OF KINGS which takes place at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila, Philippines.

Once again, ONE Championship’s finest athletes will electrify the Mall of Asia Arena with explosive, action-packed contests. In the main event, hometown hero Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon of Baguio City, Philippines will take on two-division ONE World Champion Martin “The Situ-Asian” Nguyen of Sydney, Australia.

Ticket information for ONE: REIGN OF KINGS is available at www.onefc.com.

Multiple-time No Gi BJJ World Champion Garry “The Lion Killer” Tonon of New Jersey, USA began his martial arts career as a wrestler, competing extensively throughout grade school. He was introduced to Brazilian jiu-jitsu at age 14, enrolling at Tom DeBlass’ Ocean County BJJ and became one of DeBlass’ most dedicated students. He won his first BJJ world title in 2008 in the juvenile blue belt division. Today, he is one of the world’s most decorated grapplers, having won multiple tournaments across the globe. He is a former IBJJF World Champion, two-time IBJJF World No-Gi Champion, and four-time Eddie Bravo Invitational Champion. He made his professional mixed martial arts debut in early 2018, stopping Filipino Richard Corminal by second-round TKO. Tonon now makes his way back to face Rahul Raju.

Find out what Garry Tonon had to say ahead of the blockbuster matchup this Friday night:

“It’s a little more similar (this time around). It’s a different country, the travel, the organization, the people you’re working with, the grappling and the hands — all these things that have happened previously. It’s happening all over again. Everytime it happens, it’s just a little bit more comfortable and normal.”

“My last fight, that’s my only real experience, not only in mixed martial arts but also any striking in general. It’s very foreign territory for me. So building confidence in my abilities it’s a big struggle, to say the least. That’s why we spar pretty much everyday. This isn’t something that I’ve been doing for my entire life. Jiu-Jitsu has, and I’ve been in martial arts for a long, long time — for most of my life — but the striking is so new. I’m just trying to get the rounds in every single day. I pretty much spar everyday leading up to the fight.”

“I think one thing that fans can expect from me this time is a little more confidence, more sense of direction. So now I can become a little more creative when it comes to the striking, instead of just using barebones basic, prerequisite skills that I was working on in the previous fight. But I’m still very green, I still have a lot to learn. I think you’re going to see some interesting strategy when it comes to striking for this fight. You may even see a submission, we’ll see. I’ve been toying around with the idea in my head. It’s always a possibility, especially if I feel like I’m going to be in danger. If you’re in danger, you’re under high stress, you’re always going to try and go back to what you know. We’ll see what happens there.”

“My end goal is to take everything that I have learned and relay it to the next generation. That’s where I see my career going. I don’t see my career ending with just a professional career. I think that’s a means to an end for me. It’s for me to get the experience and the perspective I need to be able to communicate this knowledge and these skills to the next generation and help them out. We have a guy like Renzo Gracie competing on the card, who was basically the founder of the organization that I train in. All the guys that are coaching me are guys that sprung from his teachings. I want to be a figure like that. I want to be a figure who people could look up to and say, ‘If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.’ Not for selfish reasons, but that feels good to me. I think it’s a great way for me to contribute all these things that I’ve been given from all these people who went out of their way to spend time and sacrifice their time and to help me out. This is for me to give back to the next generation and help them out.”

ONE: REIGN OF KINGS
Friday, 27 July
Mall of Asia Arena, Manila, Philippines

Main Event
ONE Interim Bantamweight World Championship
Martin Nguyen vs Kevin Belingon
Mixed Martial Arts: 65.8kg (Bantamweight)

Shannon Wiratchai vs Shinya Aoki
Mixed Martial Arts: 77.1kg (Lightweight)

Renzo Gracie vs Yuki Kondo
Mixed Martial Arts: 83.9kg (Welterweight)

Eduard Folayang vs Aziz Pahrudinov
Mixed Martial Arts: 77.1kg (Lightweight)

Garry Tonon vs Rahul Raju
Mixed Martial Arts: 77.1kg (Lightweight)

Armen Petrosyan vs Chris Ngimbi
ONE Super Series Kickboxing: 72.5kg (Catch Weight)

Panicos Yusuf vs Han Zi Hao
ONE Super Series Muay Thai: 65.8kg (Bantamweight)

Joshua Pacio vs Pongsiri Mitsatit
Mixed Martial Arts: 56.7kg (Strawweight)

Chamuaktong Fightermuaythai vs Brown Pinas
ONE Super Series Muay Thai: 68.0kg (Catch Weight)

Rene Catalan vs Stefer Rahardian
Mixed Martial Arts: 56.7kg (Strawweight)

Sor Sey vs Xie Bin
Mixed Martial Arts: 70.3kg (Featherweight)