ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang wants Eddie Alvarez rematch

Santino Honasan on Jul 05, 2020 04:26 PM
ONE: Eduard Folayang wants Eddie Alvarez rematch
(Photo: Richard Esguerra)

In August of 2019, Filipino mixed martial arts icon and two-time ONE Lightweight World Champion Eduard “Landslide” Folayang came painfully close to recording what would have been the biggest win of his MMA career when he faced former UFC and Bellator Lightweight World Champion Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez in a high-stakes lightweight matchup. 

The winner would earn a spot in the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix Finals against Turkey’s Saygid Guseyn “Dagi” Arslanaliev at ONE: CENTURY in Tokyo, Japan, later that year. 

Early in the first round, it looked like Folayang was on his way to Tokyo after chopping Alvarez down with a nasty leg kick that obviously hurt the American star. 

What followed suit however, was a heartbreaking turn of events for Folayang, and an impeccable comeback from Alvarez. 

Looking to finish Alvarez off, Folayang pounced and began raining down heavy shot after heavy shot. Alvarez meanwhile, covered up and then waited for his opportunity to reverse things. Alvarez flipped Folayang over, took his back, and locked in the rear naked choke for the first-round submission win. 

Folayang admitted to rushing things as he was a tad bit too excited to get the finish. 

(READ ALSO: WHAT IF: Eduard Folayang had stopped Eddie Alvarez back in 2019?)

Now, looking to make his way back up to the top of the lightweight ladder, Folayang hopes to be able to draw another meeting with Alvarez. 

“[If I could face anybody], it’s definitely Eddie Alvarez,” Folayang told ONE Championship’s Christian Jacinto. “I want to face him again.”

As he had said before, Folayang acknowledges that he could have done a lot of things better in their first encounter. 

“Back in our match, I had a lot of regrets, I made a lot of mistakes…If given the chance, I believe my performance would be a whole lot better,” the Team Lakay star stated. 

“I definitely got careless in that match. We expected Eddie to be more of a striker, so I was confident when the match hit the ground,” he continued. 

Indeed, Alvarez has been known to be a brawler, which has helped him become a crowd favorite during his time in the UFC and in Bellator. 

Against Folayang however, Alvarez - who’s a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt under Ricardo Almeida - let his grappling and his experience shine. 

In the past, Folayang has shown that he can hold his own against some dangerous grapplers, as evidenced by his stunning world title win against former champion Shinya Aoki back in 2016. 

Folayang hopes that he can channel that same level of defense again if and when he gets to share the cage with Alvarez again. 

“If there would be a rematch, I’d address my issues in the ground, and hopefully, I’ll be better this time around."

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