"Way to go brother" - Chito Vera, fans give massive love to Kade Ruotolo following incredible MMA debut at ONE 167

Chito Vera (left) congratulates Kade Ruotolo (right) on a successful MMA debut. [Photos via: ONE Championship]
Chito Vera (left) congratulates Kade Ruotolo (right) on a successful MMA debut. [Photos via: ONE Championship]

ONE lightweight submission grappling world champion Kade Ruotolo ticked off another box in his list of career goals by having his MMA debut at ONE 167.

Sharing the Circle with him was ONE Championship debutant Blake Cooper, who had won his previous two bouts by way of a finish and was a highly decorated amateur wrestling champion.

Despite the Lion of Judah product's impressive resume, Ruotolo was more than up to the challenge as he traded strikes with Cooper before ultimately locking in a rear-naked choke late into round one.

ONE Championship posted Ruotolo's successful MMA debut on Instagram which can be viewed below.

Amazed at Ruotolo's achievement, UFC bantamweight MMA star Chito Vera wrote in the comments section:

"Way to go brother"

Other fans soon chimed in:

"Kade looked pretty solid for his first MMA fight. Good movement in his stand up, good distancing, few nice kicks. Looked calm and relaxed. Good for him."
"Dude spent 2 minutes with Superbon training and threw some nice high kicks. 😁 Great win bro!"
"His striking looked pretty good too, fast kicks"
"He looked good everywhere in that fight 🔥"

Kade Ruotolo highly critical of his own MMA debut

Despite picking up the victory, the 21-year-old was not willing to rest on his laurels and had even pointed out where he made mistakes in the post-event press conference.

Kade Ruotolo stated:

"I feel like, yourself is your biggest critic most of the time. So, I've seen a lot of mistakes or just feeling like I made a lot of mistakes on the feet. But at the same time, I just got that nervous energy, that nervous debut, and I can't wait to go show people what I can do on the feet as well."

Fans in the United States and Canada can replay ONE 167 on demand via Prime Video.

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Edited by Tejas Rathi
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