Garry Tonon, who formerly challenged for the world title for the featherweight division of ONE Championship, does not consider Shamil Gasanov to be a typical pressure-type wrestler from Dagestan.
On the other hand, ‘The Lion Killer’ feels that his forthcoming adversary is an improved and more talented version of the dreaded Russian-born fighters.
Ahead of their important featherweight showdown that will serve as the co-main event of ONE Fight Night 12: Superlek vs. Khalilov, which will be shown on Prime Video this Friday, Tonon honestly discussed what makes Gasanov more dangerous than the typical competitors from his region:
“I actually think he’s a little different than some of the Dagestani Russian wrestling types because he tends to favor submitting people over beating them up on the ground, which tends to be more what those guys do,” I said. “I think this is because he tends to favor submitting people rather than beating them up on the ground.”
The multiple-time Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu world champion continued by saying:
“They do submit people, that much is certain, but more often than not, it’s a result of grinding somebody out and then submitting them. This guy seems to be lot more intent on surrendering, at least to me.
This smothering combat style was made known, of course, by the legend of mixed martial arts Khabib Nurmagomedov, which paved the path for many Dagestani sportsmen to compete in mixed martial arts promotions all over the world.
To this day, many combatants find it challenging to cope with Russian wrestlers because they are able to physically force their will on their opponents by forcing them to carry their weight and pummeling them into oblivion while they are on the ground.
ONE Championship is home to a number of sportsmen who have a similar history, such as Murad Ramazanov and Saygid Izagakhmaev, amongst others. Among these athletes, ONE Championship is a natural fit.
Gasanov, despite the fact that he possesses the same skills, appears to be made of a different cloth given his propensity for pursuing submission victories rather than TKO or decision triumphs in his fights. “The Cobra” was successful in forcing nine of his thirteen opponents to tap out, including Kim Jae Woong in his final appearance in the Circle a year ago.
In the meantime, Tonon will be exceedingly mindful of what Gasanov brings to the table and will try to put a stop to his win run as soon as possible.
On July 14, ONE Fight Night 12 will be broadcast live in the United States during primetime from Lumpinee Stadium in Bangkok. Prime Video users in North America have unrestricted access to watch the full event without spending a dime.