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Anatoly Malykhin Aims for History in Epic Showdown Against Reinier de Ridder

In the adrenaline-fueled realm of MMA, dreams meet determination, and aspirations collide with sheer willpower. Enter Anatoly Malykhin, a formidable force aiming to etch his name in the annals of fighting history. The stage is set, the stakes are high, and the date is marked—March 1st will witness an electrifying clash as Malykhin challenges reigning ONE Championship middleweight titan, Reinier de Ridder, in the pinnacle event of ONE 166, hosted in the vibrant setting of Lusail, Qatar.

Why is this showdown so extraordinary, you ask? Well, picture this: Malykhin, already a reigning champion in the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions under the esteemed ONE banner, seeks to etch a milestone unlike any other in MMA lore—the coveted distinction of becoming the world's first three-division champion!

Ranked within the tops in not one but two weight classes, Malykhin's meteoric rise within ONE Championship has been nothing short of awe-inspiring. Achieving the seemingly impossible, he clinched titles in both the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions within a mere five bouts. Now, his sights are firmly set on a third conquest—the middleweight throne.

The ONE middleweight division boasts a unique weight limit of 205 pounds, adhering to the promotion's no-dehydration system. And here’s where the plot thickens—De Ridder, a former dual-title holder in both the 205 and 225-pound categories, faces the relentless challenge from the undefeated 13-0 Russian powerhouse, Malykhin, aiming to seize De Ridder's remaining crown.

Malykhin's track record speaks volumes—a flawless 100 percent knockout rate since entering ONE, vanquishing formidable opponents like Arjan Bhullar and Kirill Grishenko. At 35, he's showcased an unrivaled prowess, never once allowing a fight to reach the judges' scorecards.

As the countdown begins, the anticipation swells, promising an exhilarating clash of titans. Brace yourselves, fight aficionados, for a spectacle destined to redefine limits, as Malykhin and De Ridder prepare to script a chapter of MMA history in their relentless pursuit of glory. 


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