THE stakes just got higher as ONE Championship recently announced that it was going to award US $50,000 bonuses for every event. A minimum of one and a maximum of five will be given to fighters who show “gameness” and exemplary performance.
While this isn’t the first time ONE has awarded cash bonuses to their fighters, it’s now going to be consistent through every event.
“At a minimum, we’re gonna give one and at a maximum of five per show every single show and it goes across all different martial arts. So whether it’s MMA, Muay Thai, kickboxing, submission grappling, etc., all the different martial arts we feature, this is really an added incentive,” said ONE Championship Chairman and CEO Chatri Sityodtong.
Three fighters who competed at ONE: HEAVY HITTERS on Friday were handed this incentive for their incredible performances.
Izagakhmaev, the protege of mixed martial arts legend Khabib Nurmagomedov, announced his entry in ONE Championship in emphatic fashion as he dominated former ONE World Title challenger James Nakashima and made him tap to a head and arm triangle to earn a second round submission win.
Meanwhile, Vandaryeva showed grit in her tough split decision loss to Supergirl, with many of the fans in attendance at Singapore Indoor Stadium voicing their support of the Belarusian strawweight after the match.
Japanese star Senzo Ikeda was also a recipient of the $50,000 bonus with his sensational third round knockout win over Elipitua “The Magician” Siregar after connecting with a thunderous body shot.
Vandaryeva taking home the prize also means that losers are eligible to receive the bonus too.
“We look at it from two criteria: one is performance, meaning displaying martial arts technique at the highest levels in the world; and second is gameness, having that finishing, that killer instinct every second of the fight, looking for the finish and not trying to coast, not trying to play safe, to go back to the true essence of what martial arts is about,” Sityodtong said.
“Martial arts is about finishing, a self-defense situation, it’s about protecting and defending yourself, whether it’s on the street, in the gym, in competition, and I want to make sure that our athletes have that spirit.”
The promotion takes great pride in its high finishing rate for fights, due largely in part to its global martial arts ruleset. And with this additional cash bonus up for grabs every event, Sityodtong expects every fighter to actively look for finishes even more and put on a great show for the fans.
“I want to make sure that we are able to give the very best of our roster and at the same time, of course, I want to make sure we reward our fans,” he said.