One Championship travels to India, with a card packed with exciting matchups and local talent. The main event features an exciting matchup between One Championship’s heavyweight champion, Brandon Vera, and a rising star in India’s Arjan Bhullar.
Brandon ‘The Truth’ Vera
A true veteran of the sport, Brandon Vera has faced off against some of the biggest names in MMA heavyweight history. ‘The Truth’ has faced off against fighters such as Jon Jones, Randy Couture, and Frank Mir. Whilst he was not always successful in these fights, Vera has always given a stellar account of himself.
Having left the UFC and moved over to One Championship in 2014, Vera cleared a path to the Singaporean organization’s heavyweight belt, knocking out Paul Cheng in only 26 seconds along the way. He has since racked up KO victories over Hideki Sekine and Mauro Cerili.
However, Vera did come up short against former One Championship light heavyweight champion, Aung La N Sang in his last outing. That fight took place in 2019, and he has not fought since. This lack of activity, combined with the fact that Vera is now 43 may spring alarms for fans of the champ.
Arjan ‘Singh’ Bhullar
Arjan Bhullar is also a former UFC fighter, having gone 3-1 for the North American promotion before making the move to One Championship. At the UFC, Bhullar was able to comfortably outpoint Juan Adams, Marcelo Golm, and Luis Henrique, although he was submitted by Adam Wieczorek. This is especially surprising due to Bhullar’s grappling credentials.
Bhullar is a Commonwealth gold medalist in freestyle wrestling and also competed in the 2012 Olympics. However, Bhullar has also demonstrated impressive stand-up skills. He competently outboxed Mauro Cerili in his One Championship and did not see the need to utilize his high-level wrestling.
Bhullar clearly has the momentum going into this fight. The Indian-Canadian wrestler is on a 3 fight winning streak. Bhullar also has the motivation of having the option to become India’s first MMA world champion. This feat has no doubt been a constant source of inspiration throughout his training camp.
However, Brandon Vera is a prolific knockout artist. 4 KO’s in his last 4 wins speaks volumes of how dangerous a fighter he truly is. Vera will likely have the advantage early on and will be gunning for another quick knockout. It is notable that whilst Bhullar does not carry the same power that Vera possesses, he has never been knocked out in his professional career.
Bhullar has also proven time after time that he is more than capable of taking the fight into deep waters. Should he survive Vera’s initial onslaught, Bhullar may well be able to capitalize on the champions’ inactivity, as well as the frailaties that age often brings to MMA practitioners.
Check out the TarpsOff MMA UK podcast for a deeper discussion into ONE: Dangal.