Aoki breaks an arm! credit: mantofight.com

Shinya Aoki comes one step closer to featherweight title


Shinya Aoki, current ONE FC Lightweight champion and one of the best 155-pound fighters in the world, made the drop to featherweight for the first time in his 10-year career.

Aoki took on Cody “The Machine” Stevens. After three rounds, the ONE FC Lightweight champion would come away with the decision victory.

Although Aoki was facing an opponent who was fighting on the big stage for the first time, he is a big enough star in Japan to where if he serious about fighting Koji Oishi for the ONE FC 145-pound title, officials would probably grant his request and make the match.

Aoki has captured championships in DREAM, DEEP and Shooto and is one of the most well-known Japanese fighters in mixed martial arts. He has dominated the 155-pound division in Asia for the last several years and has also made the occasional trip the United States to take on fighters like Gilbert Melendez and Eddie Alvarez, who are two of only five men to ever beat Aoki in a professional MMA bout.

If the two champions were to go head-to-head, it would be a classic striker vs. grappler type match.

Aoki has 22 submissions, which gives him a clear edge in grappling; however Oishi has seven knockouts on his record. This could be trouble for Aoki, who has four losses by way of knockout.

If ONE FC does sign Aoki vs. Oishi, it could be the biggest fight in the promotion’s history.

Who would you like to see Aoki fight next? Answer with a comment below, send a tweet to @alstover or email [email protected]

Tags: Japanese MMA MMA Shinya Aoki