Ok Rae Yoon picked up the biggest win of his career at ONE on TNT 4 after pulling off a unanimous decision over Eddie Alvarez in the co-main event on Wednesday.
The difference ultimately came down to a vicious knockdown delivered by Ok in the opening round as he planted Alvarez on the canvas with a devastating punch that nearly led to a finish. Alvarez managed to survive but he was never able to put together the kind of punishment needed in the final two rounds to sway the judges in his favor.
It was a non-stop pace from start to finish as Ok and Alvarez definitely brough the best out of each other.
After a couple of quick exchanges on the feet to start the fight, Alvarez closed the distance to look for the takedown while pressing Ok against the cage. The South Korean fighter was able to resist the wrestling from Alvarez but he was also struggling to break away from his grip.
Once he finally got separation, Ok began blasting Alvarez with a series of brutal leg kicks and then unloaded with a huge right hand down the middle that floored the former UFC champion. It appeared Alvarez might be finished but the referee allowed the fight to continue as Ok desperately tried to put him away.
Somehow, Alvarez survived the onslaught and eventually got back to his feet where he tagged Ok with a few stiff shots of his own before the round ended.
After a minute to recover, Alvarez came back out and once again started attacking with his wrestling but he just couldn’t put Ok on the ground and keep him there.
With five minute remaining, Alvarez started swinging for the fences with the belief that he needed to stage a comeback because ONE’s scoring isn’t done round by round but rather as an entire fight. Based on that criteria, Ok’s knockdown and near finish in the opening round was still the most damage done.
Being so offensive minded also left Alvarez open for some counter strikes from Ok as he tagged the Philadelphia native with a few quick, straight punches as well as a solid knee during another takedown attempt. Alvarez continued to head hunt during the final few exchanges with Ok happy to trade shots with the lightweight legend as the fight came to a close.
As soon as the decision was read, Ok celebrated with his team as he likely put himself into position to challenge for a lightweight title shot against reigning champion Christian Lee while Alvarez was understandably dejected as he fell to 1-2 with one no contest since joining the ONE Championship roster.