ONE strawweight champion Jarred “The Monkey God” Brooks has a shared history with former division king Joshua “The Passion” Pacio after the buildup to their fight last year.
It was heated, with Brooks provoking Pacio and Team Lakay with his playful trash talk. But that animosity simmered down the moment they faced off in the cage, and a mutual respect between the two men emerged.
That’s why the mixed martial artist in Brooks isn’t taking his eyes off Pacio despite shooting for a second world title in a different sport.
Up next, the American challenges Mikey “Darth Rigatoni” Musumeci at ONE Fight Night 13 on August 5 inside Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand.
“Pacio was the best in the division. I think that he’s got his wrestling down pat, his striking has always been good, he’s always knocked people out,” he said.
“I think that me and Pacio, at the end of the day, would be a better look for the strawweight division,” he added.
That fight was a clear win for Brooks, but the American powerhouse wasn’t convinced with how he beat Pacio. Knowing how the Filipino has been sharpening his tools for his eventual return, Brooks expects to meet him again in the near future.
However, he has a matchup in mind for “The Passion” to hurdle first before the rematch happens.
“I think that [Pacio] needs to either go against me or he needs to go against Gustavo Balart. I think that would be a good fight. Either way, it will show where Gustavo lies in the whole division,” he said.
“But yeah, I think Josh is still ranked number one. I didn’t beat him crazy bad, so I could see how they would want to rematch. But besides that, I think that Josh needs to fight again before he fights me,” he said.
While Brooks knows that Pacio has been working on his game, he sent a warning to the rest of the strawweight division.
“A huge message to every strawweight out there in my division. Work hard, man. I want to fight every one of you guys,” he said.
“If you guys are f****** around, it isn’t fair to me. It isn’t fair to my family, and it isn’t fair to ONE Championship and the fans. Quit f****** around,” he added. (ABS-CBN News)