In an exclusive chat with ONE Championship commentator Michael Schiavello, the Filipino duo from Team Lakay discussed their strategies for their bouts against Yoshitaka “Nobita” Naito and Yuya “Little Piranha” Wakamatsu, respectively.
They will compete at Indonesia’s Jakarta Convention Center this Saturday, 22 September.
Kingad is known for his striking, but so is his opponent, who has earned nine of his 10 wins by knockout.
With “The King’s” recent improvements in the grappling department, you might expect him to take his dangerous opponent down to negate his strengths, but it seems he would prefer to take a crowd-pleasing approach.
“I know Wakamatsu is an impressive striker. I watched all his fights and it’s all about knockouts,” he says.
“I’ve been working on my striking, and specifically my ground control and wrestling, but my game plan is to test my striking with him.
“My prediction is I will submit him or knock him out in the second round.”
Pacio has an incredible task ahead of him, as he challenges for the ONE Strawweight World Title in a rematch with the two-time titleholder.
In their first meeting, “The Passion” seemed to be in control during the striking exchanges, but met his downfall when the bout hit the ground.
Though many fans may assume he will do everything possible to stay on his feet this time, he has also been working hard on his grappling, and welcomes the chance to tangle with “Nobita” on the ground.
Though he does not expect to submit Naito with the “Passion Lock” he used in his last bout – because “he is a very high-level grappler who will never give up his back” – he is willing to step into the champion’s domain on the mat and show what he can do.
“The last time we faced each other in 2016, I had a lack of confidence in myself. I just concentrated on defending his takedowns,” he says.
“This coming 22 September, we’re prepared for the takedown defense and offense. If I have the opportunity to take him down, I will do it, and if I have the opportunity to control him on the ground, I will do it.
“This is mixed martial arts, and I will mix striking, wrestling, and grappling.”
Check out the full video for more from the Filipino training partners, including their messages of support for the victims of Typhoon Mangkhut, their thoughts about visiting Jakarta, and a game of Jenga trivia.