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Garry Tonon Reveals Why He Took the Grappling Bout Offer for ONE 157 – “I Got KO-D, I Have a Certain Period…”

Published 05/19/2022, 4:05 AM EDT

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Garry Tonon is going back to his roots at ONE 157 against Tye Ruotolo in a grappling match. ‘The Lion Killer’ last fought for the ONE Featherweight World Championship at ONE Championship: Lights Out. The bout saw Tonon getting brutally knocked out in the first round at the hands of the World Champion, Thanh Le.

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Tonon, who has made it certain that he wants to focus on MMA, surprisingly accepted the grappling bout. In an interview with ONE, ‘The Lion Killer’ said, “I’ve never been opposed to doing grappling matches.”


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However, he clarified, “When it interferes with MMA is when I have an issue, taking a match, or whatever the case may be.”

The 30-year-old further added why he took the grappling contest and said, “I got KO-d, I have a certain period of time where I’m not supposed to be competing in striking contests. It still kind of makes sense.”

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Tonon has competed in the grappling bouts before. In fact, he was one half of the first-ever grappling contest (vs Shinya Aoki) inside ONE Circle in 2017.

Interestingly, the promotion has also put the Japanese star on the ONE 157 card. He will compete against Kade Ruotolo in a grappling contest as well.

Garry Tonon shared a weird incident while signing the ONE 157 grappling bout offer

Though ‘The Lion Killer’ accepted the May 20 contest, he wasn’t expecting a grappling offer from ONE Championship.


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A post shared by Garry Lee Tonon (@garrytonon)

“Well really, as an organization, they didn’t really speak to me about it specifically. They just kind of sent the bout offer,” said Tonon.


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The American revealed that ONE CEO and Chairman Chatri Sityodtong teased a grappling move before his World Championship bout. However, there was no further discussion about his grappling bout with the promotion.


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Not only that, but Tonon also had an interesting detail about his ONE 157 offer. He said, “Ironically, the original bout offer was for Kade. And then they were like, oh, yeah, just kidding, we messed up, it’s for Tye.”

The 30-year-old also revealed that he fancies a tricky grappling contest versus the 19-year-old, Tye Ruotolo. Given the age gap, the match at ONE 157 will see a collision between the new generation and the older generation of jiujitsu.


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What do you make of Garry Tonon returning to a grappling contest? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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Written by:

Deepak Kumar


One take at a time

Deepak Kumar is a UFC author at EssentiallySports. His love for MMA comes from the chaos and violence the fight game brings to the table. A BJJ aspirant, Deepak began following the sport as a casual fan when Ronda Rousey was finishing her opponents in seconds.
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Edited by:

Reubyn Coutinho