ONE two-division world champion Reinier de Ridder will be putting one of his belts on the line against another world champ, ONE interim heavyweight king Anatoly 'Sladkiy' Malykhin. Malykhin will drop a weight class to challenge de Ridder for his light heavyweight strap at ONE on Prime Video 5.
This bout will be between two undefeated world champions and someone's "O" has to go come December 2. The event is live and free to North American audiences with a Prime Video subscription.
Known for his knack of getting under his opponents' skin with his inventive and often times hilarious trash-talking, 'The Dutch Knight' never misses a chance to make fun of his heavyweight foe.
In a video posted on de Ridder's Instagram account, he called Malykhin a specific kind of food he claims he likes to eat, writing:
"Beef? More like a meatball to me! @anmalykhin be ready, dinner is served. 🍴👑"
The Dutch grappling specialist has always been oozing with confidence coming into any fight he's in. Against the hard-hitting former wrestler in Malykhin, however, de Ridder will need all the confidence in the world as 'Sladkiy' has the power and size to overwhelm anyone put in front of him.
Anatoly Malykhin warns Reinier de Ridder to stay away from the heavyweight division
In an interview with ONE Championship, ONE interim heavyweight world champion and upcoming challenger to Reinier de Ridder's light heavyweight strap Anatoly Malykhin made a stern warning to his upcoming foe:
“He [de Ridder] is a good fighter, of course, since he holds two belts and has zero [losses on his] record. He is worthy of respect. He has decent wrestling. He strikes very badly and he is a very slow, protracted fighter. Compared to me, I think I will drop him down in seven minutes, maximum."
“It would be a big mistake for him to move a category up. He should expect very big trouble. My wrestling is on the highest level, plus my boxing is on a different level. I think he shouldn’t do that.”
Reinier de Ridder has expressed his aspirations to make MMA history by becoming the first-ever three-division world champion.
While he has the skills to pull it off, fighting someone of the size, power and skill of Malykhin makes the task a million-fold harder. With the amount of confidence 'The Dutch Knight' has ahead of their clash, something tells us that he might just challenge for the heavyweight strap if he wins.