Former ONE Bantamweight World Champion Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon believes his teammate, former Brave CF Bantamweight Champion Stephen “The Sniper” Loman has a great chance to defeat his extremely dangerous opponent in his ONE Championship debut.
Loman is set to face hard-hitting John “Hands of Stone” Lineker in the main event of “ONE on TNT III,” the third of a four-part event series scheduled for broadcast on Wednesday, April 21 (Thursday, April 22 PH time).
Belingon, who succumbed to Lineker via technical knockout just last October, understands the challenges Loman faces against the highly-regarded Brazilian finisher. But he believes “The Sniper” has enough to pull off the upset against the bantamweight division’s #1-ranked contender.
“When it comes to his fighting, Stephen is a well-rounded fighter. He has solid striking skills and has exceptional grappling skills. He knows what to do in high pressure situations on the mat, and he can create opportunities. This will be his biggest advantage over John Lineker,” Belingon told ONE Championship.
“Stephen also has a lot of experience in and out of the ring. He’s a veteran of this sport and he’s used to big fights. Mentally and physically, Stephen is a hundred percent ready for this fight. He will give Lineker a good run.”
At just 28 years of age, Loman joined ONE Championship in February, still in the absolute prime of his career. The Baguio City native sports a 14-2 professional mixed martial arts record, and is currently riding an eight-fight winning streak.
In 2017, he defeated Gurdarshan “Saint Lion” Mangat to capture the Brave CF Bantamweight Championship in Bahrain. After successfully defending the title on four occasions, Loman then earned the chance to showcase his skills on the global stage.
He hopes to become the sixth member of Team Lakay to bring home ONE Championship gold. Belingon is confident Loman can reach that lofty perch, if only for his winning mindset.
“Stephen Loman is a very hard working athlete. I’ve obviously been witness to his work ethic in the gym. He’s been a champion for a long time for a very good reason. When he’s in camp, he practically lives at the gym. You won’t find him anywhere else. He has a great attitude, which I think is one of his best assets,” said Belingon.
“I’m very happy he’s joined ONE Championship. He will always be our brother at Team Lakay, and now we have another warrior competing at the highest level. We’re all motivated and fired up, and can’t wait to see him perform under the brightest lights. He’s a great representative of the team and I’m proud he’s my teammate.”
“ONE on TNT III” is the third installment in the “ONE on TNT” event series, which broadcasts in the United States on prime time via B/R Live and TNT. Other bouts include a Muay Thai showdown between striking icons Nieky “The Natural” Holzken and “The Gunslinger” John Wayne Parr, as well as a heavyweight appearance from UWW Wrestling World Champion Amir Aliakbari.
Belingon knows how dangerous Lineker is, and that victory is just a matter of executing the right game plan. He and his Team Lakay brethren, along with Head Coach Mark Sangiao, are making sure Loman comes in well-equipped to handle anything Lineker throws his way.
“In the end, I think if Stephen can stick to the game plan, he can definitely win this fight. The strategy heading into this fight is crucial to victory. Lineker is a dangerous opponent, but he’s just a man. Every man can be beaten. Stephen just has to focus on the game plan and he’s got a great chance to win,” said Belingon.