ONE 165 featured several entertaining moments, including a kickboxing war between Superlek Kiatmoo9 and Takeru Segawa, John Lineker shockingly fighting Shinya Aokia on an hour’s notice, and Kade Ruotolo retaining his submission grappling world title.
On Sunday, January 28, ONE Championship traveled to the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan, for a stacked pay-per-view event. There were many reasons to watch ONE 165, but the most talked about matchup was Takeru making his promotional debut against ONE flyweight kickboxing world champion Superlek.
Takeru was initially supposed to fight Rodtang in a non-title bout before the latter pulled out with an injury. Luckily, Superlek stepped in and saved the day by showcasing an action-packed battle that had the Japanese crowd going crazy.
The difference-maker in the ONE 165 main event was Superlek’s leg kicks. He continued to break down Takeru and avoided an onslaught from the Japanese superstar in round three to retain his world title with a unanimous decision win.
Death by a million kicks!
Superlek leaves Takeru bruised and beaten as he chopped away at his legs for five rounds to defend his ONE Flyweight Kickboxing title. The Japanese fighter showed great heart, pressuring till the last second.#ONE165 pic.twitter.com/iSiHKzVmeR
— Beyond Kickboxing (@Beyond_Kick) January 28, 2024
Superlek has undoubtedly separated himself as one of the best fighters on the planet. Over the last two years, ‘The Kicking Machine’ has established a nine-fight win streak under the ONE Championship banner, with three wins in kickboxing and the rest in Muay Thai.
In the ONE 165 co-main event, ONE lightweight submission grappling world champion Kade Ruotolo faced Tommy Langaker in an immediate rematch. Langaker believed he made the adjustments to emerge victorious but ultimately suffered another unanimous decision loss against Ruotolo.
Since making his promotional debut in May 2022, Ruotolo has remained undefeated by securing wins against Shinya Aoki, Uali Kurzhev, Matheus Gabriel, and Langaker x2.
Superlek vs Takeru scorecard.
— Nicolas Atkin (@nicatkinONE) January 28, 2024
Shinya Aoki secures first-round submission win against John Lineker in shocking turn of events at ONE 165
The ONE 165 pay-per-view main card also featured several other intriguing fights, including a lightweight MMA bout between Shinya Aoki and Sage Northcutt. Unfortunately, the American superstar suffered another setback after a last-second announcement that he wouldn’t be fighting.
Despite participating in fight week, Northcutt pulled out of the event after his coach, Urijah Faber, was kicked out of Japan due to an issue with his visa. As a result, UFC veteran John Lineker stepped in at the last moment to face Aoki in an openweight bout.
Lineker secured a paycheck and saved Aoki from wasting a training camp, but he didn’t receive the result he wanted. Three minutes into the fight, ‘Tobikan Judan’ locked in a rear-naked choke and earned a first-round submission win in front of his hometown crowd.
Shinya Aoki submits last minute replacement John Linekar via rear naked choke in round 1 in openweight #MMA bout after Aoki’s original opponent, Sage Northcutt, withdrew due to visa issues with his cornermen just hours before the fight. #ONE165 pic.twitter.com/0Sl2O5vi5F
— Parry Punch (@ParryPunchNews) January 28, 2024