This weekend, Jarred Brooks takes on Bokang Masunyane at ONE 156 this weekend. “The Monkey God” feels he’s just a fight or two away from a title shot against the current champion, Joshua Pacio. The flyweight talent, who has fought in nearly every major promotion, looks to show Masunyane a different level of fighting and make a huge statement this weekend.
Watch or listen to the interview with Jarred Brooks on YouTube or via podcast below!
Coming to ONE from the UFC, Jarred Brooks is the product of a wrestling family. Often in the United States, when one in the family wrestles, it is pretty much a family affair. It is just that for Brooks as he came out of a family who fought for fun as well.
“My dad pretty much, my whole family, we’re a bunch of fighters. My dad, my uncle, my great uncle, all state champions from Indiana wrestling. They were just down to scrap in the streets. They pretty much paved the way for me to go in and do what I do now. My dad is really big into the UFC, he’s always been big into the UFC, the old Shooto fights, PRIDE, so I grew up watching it. Just like kids watched Stone Cold Steve Austin, I was watching Bas Rutten, Kevin Randleman, and all those guys.”
Fans will recall Brooks from his short run in the UFC. He went 2-2 in the UFC before the great flyweight purge at the onset of the ESPN deal in 2018/2019. He had tough fights against Shorty Torres and Deiveson Figueiredo. He did win two fights against Eric Shelton and Roberto Sanchez before being cut. Some say that the UFC rid the division of the wrestlers and opted for more strikers in a fan friendly approach to the division. Jarred Brooks says that the people who don’t care for the wrestling in mixed martial arts and how much it’s been a part of the sport since the beginning.
“That just comes down to the fans not knowing mixed martial arts enough. When you look at the OG days, the people that were running the UFC were the Midwest wrestlers. I guess as far as promotional wise, I get where they’re coming from. But you’ve got to give people a chance at the end of the day to really hone their skills and be the fighters that they were meant to be.” Continuing, Brooks says, “My theory personally is the reason why it was ‘boring’ is because we had so many good fighters. Inside the flyweight division everything was so close. If you get two good wrestlers in the NCAA finals, it’s going to be a 2-1 match and it’s going to go to triple overtime. In wrestling that’s actually stuff people like to see because they know wrestling. At the end of the day, no disrespect to any of the flyweights that are in there, they kind of watered it down. They watered it down for somebody like Deiveson Figueiredo, somebody that I beat in my opinion. He’s knocking people out left and right. Now it comes down to Brandon Moreno but he wasn’t even in the top ten when all of us were in there.”
Jarred Brooks and ONE Championship: A Match Made in Heaven
But his entire focus now is on ONE Championship and being the best fighter for his new promotion. Brooks feels that the UFC is actually starting to follow suit with trends in ONE Championship more and more now and points to that as the proof he needs that ONE will be the best promotion in the world before long.
“I don’t really care at this point, I’m more looking into ONE because I feel that is the future of mixed martial arts. The UFC is actually copying ONE in a lot of things. They’re copying the fan bonuses and stuff like that. I think that they’re going to be doing mixed promotional stuff like kickboxer vs. MMA kind of deal. ONE is striding and making its way into being the best promotion in the world.”
Brooks is right at home in ONE Championship. Going into ONE 156, he can’t help but laugh at American fans seeming distaste for the smaller fighters even though they’re the ones that are non-stop action.
“The Asian fans, they love that. But the average American fan is like five foot nine and 160 pounds and he thinks he can beat my ass. He’s like ‘Oh, these midgets I don’t want to see these midgets fight when I can beat their asses.’ They want to see the guys that can beat their ass’ and those are the big, stout guys. But you go into the gym with me and it’s a different story.”
So why tune in to ONE 156 and watch Jarred Brooks fight? Brooks says he brings it every fight and this fight will be no different. He’s already 2-0 in ONE and looks to make a great statement on the night to prove that he is one of the best and that Pacio should watch his back.
“They can expect the same thing they’ve been seeing: total aggression, willpower and force coming at you a million miles an hour. That’s the way I like to do it and luckily my opponent likes is a good dancer as well so let’s do the tango.”
Finally, Jarred Brooks has his goals set on proving the UFC’s decision to cut him a folly and that he is one of the best, and even the best, flyweight on the planet. He dreams of a point to where his former promotional home needs ONE and he goes in there to show how cutting him was, in fact, a mistake.
“My future goal is to get to that point where the UFC is at a standstill in the flyweight division and the whole promotion. ONE Championship is growing so much and we cross promote and I fight Deiveson Figuredo again. Or whoever the champ is, Brandon Moreno, Askar Askarov, all those guys. And just let me at them and I’ll show that I’m the best flyweight in the world.”
Tune in to ONE 156 this weekend as Jarred Brooks takes on Bokang Masunyane in a flyweight bout that’s sure to thrill.
In addition to covering the ONE Championship for My MMA News, Blaine Henry, the author, also analyzes fights from all combat sports across the globe.
Your friendly neighborhood fight fan. I watch way too many fights and my wife lets me know it. Also, Cowboy Cerrone is the GOAT.