Joshua Pacio is back and he’s taking on one of the most dangerous grapplers in ONE Championship’s volatile strawweight division.
The former ONE strawweight MMA world champion will face the undefeated Mansur Malachiev on the stacked ONE Fight Night 15 card on October 6, US primetime, at the historic Lumpinee Boxing Stadium.
ONE Championship announced the development on its official website.
Pacio is one of the most prolific fighters in ONE Championship history and had a combined 1,450 days across his two ONE strawweight world title reigns.
Although he held the strawweight throne for just 119 days during his first reign, his second one was something special.
The Filipino star reclaimed the gold from Yosuke Saruta with a vicious head-kick knockout at ONE: Roots of Honor in April 2019. Pacio then defended the strap against Rene Catalan, Alex Silva, and Saruta.
Pacio, however, relinquished the gold to Jarred Brooks at ONE 164 in December 2022.
Nevertheless, ‘The Passion’ is considered to be one of the most technically gifted fighters in the promotion and the 27-year-old is still a couple of years from reaching his athletic peak.
Standing across from Pacio is one of Dagestan’s most promising grapplers in Malachiev. The 31-year-old is one of the finest grapplers from Russia and holds a perfect professional record of 11-0.
Malachiev had a stunning ONE Championship debut when he submitted Filipino dynamo Jeremy Miado in the first round with a textbook D’Arce choke at ONE Fight Night 11 this past June.
Miado is one of the most fearsome strikers in the strawweight division, but Malachiev will take on a massive bump in opposition when he takes on Pacio in Bangkok.
ONE Fight Night 15 is ONE Championship’s 10th Amazon card of the year and will be broadcast live and free to all Prime Video subscribers in North America.