Anatoly Malykhin
Anatoly Malykhin want his third world title under the ONE Championship banner. ONE Championship


  • Anatoly Malykhin wants Reinier de Ridder's ONE middleweight title
  • The pair last fought in December 2022 when Malykhin defeated him by knockout
  • Malykhin will need to drop a lot of weight to reach the 205-pound middleweight limit

Anatoly Malykhin did what he set out to do for nearly two years and became the undisputed ONE heavyweight champion, but the Russian slugger wants more–to become the first-ever three-division champion.

"Sladkiy" coasted his way to victory at ONE Friday Fights 22 last June 23 when he handed Arjan Bhullar a one-sided beatdown to take his place atop the ONE heavyweight picture, making him a two-division champion after winning the light heavyweight title months prior.

Following his extremely dominant win over Bhullar, Malykhin was quick to call out de Ridder in the post-fight interview with Mitch Chilson.

"De Ridder, [it's] three-belt time. Hey, my brother, [my] two belts [are not] fake. Your belt [is] fake. Your belt [is] my belt," Malykhin boldly proclaimed inside the Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand as quoted.

Malykhin and de Ridder shared the cage in the main event of ONE Fight Night 5 in December 2022, which had fans around the world wondering which titan would come out victorious.

It would turn out to be the then-interim heavyweight champion's night as he battered "The Dutch Night" into oblivion with his boxing that saw de Ridder fall victim to a first-round knockout.

De Ridder would find himself being stretchered out of the SM Mall of Asia Arena as gold confetti rained down inside the cage, allowing Malykhin to take his light heavyweight title.

For de Ridder, he would later admit that he "bit off more than [he] could chew" when he accepted Malykhin's challenge.

Currently, de Ridder holds the middleweight title and while they were able to come together and meet the light heavyweight limit of 225 pounds, there is serious doubt as to whether Malykhin can drop his weight down to the middleweight ceiling of 205 points–a full 60 pounds from the light heavyweight limit.

When Malykhin fought Bhullar for undisputed gold, he officially weighed in at 240.2 pounds which would mean he needs to drop at least 35 pounds if he were to fight for the de Ridder's only title remaining.

Crazier things have happened in the world of combat sports, but with how eager "Sladkiy" was to call out de Ridder, it looks as if Malykhin is ready to break the bank and drop a significant amount of weight to go for the unprecedented achievement.

Should the fight be announced sometime down the line, the only question there would be whether Malykhin can repeat his dominant performance against de Ridder from their first matchup.

Reinier De Ridder
Reinier De Ridder will lock horns with Tye Ruotolo in a submission grappling match at ONE Fight Night 10. ONE Championship photo