Kevin Belingon
Kevin Belingon heads the four-athlete Team Lakay contingent announced for ONE: Winter Warriors II on December 17. ONE Championship


  • Kevin Belingon will face Kim Jae Woong at ONE on Prime Video 4
  • Belingon beating Kim will surely create a buzz for the 35-year-old bantamweight
  • Belingon is confident that his experience as a bantamweight will help him take home the win

Former ONE bantamweight champion Kevin Belingon will make his long-awaited return to the promotion this Friday, November 18 at ONE on Prime Video 4 against Kim Jae Woong nearly a year since his last fight.

Though some fans would consider counting out Belingon due to his four-fight losing streak that dates back to 2019, the Team Lakay striker acknowledged that the Kim fight is a must-win.

Belingon recently spoke with International Business Times sports editor and combat sports analyst Nissi Icasiano and had this to say about fighting the South Korean striker.

"I think this is the perfect gauge for me to find out if I still belong at the elite level of my division. Kim Jae Woong is a former ranked featherweight contender. Now, he's moving down to bantamweight. A win will surely send out a message that I am not yet done in the sport and I still have a lot to give," Belingon noted.

Belingon's last four fights had him in high-profile spots as he faced Bibiano Fernandes twice in 2019, the most recent bantamweight king in John Lineker in October 2020 and Kim's compatriot Kwon Won Il in December 2021.

Despite the mounting losses, "The Silencer" wants to keep fighting to prove that he still deserves a shot at the rankings.

"I need to win. The landscape of the bantamweight division is always changing. More so now that the title is vacant, a loss here will not help my case to enter the rankings again," Belingon said.

The Filipino striker also admitted to Icasiano that his warrior spirit continues to drive him in a sport that he has fought in professionally since 2007 and in the earliest days of ONE Championship.

At age 35, one would think that a fighter with a lot of mileage like Belingon would prefer to slow down, but his love for mixed martial arts (MMA) is simply too overwhelming.

Going over his game plan for Kim, Belingon allayed Filipino fans' fears of him duking it out with a fearsome fighter as it is something that he also wants to do.

In fact, he is excited to be in a potential firefight with Kim.

"I have to watch out for his boxing. He is capable of stringing together beautiful combinations, and his fists pack power. But don't get me wrong, I like this matchup. Stylistically, it favors me. He may be a striker, but I believe my striking has more layers than his."

Kim has been a major force in ONE Championship's featherweight division as he never had a fight go the distance since joining the promotion.

Despite splitting his record at an even 3-3, "The Fighting God" has power coursing through his veins and is ready to unleash them at any time as best seen in his dominant debut against Rafael Nunes.

Kim is a dangerous opponent for Belingon and he knows it, but the former is moving down a weight class from where the latter has spent his entire career–a comforting thought for the Team Lakay veteran.

"I know he's coming in as the much bigger guy, but I've been a bantamweight ever since. This is my natural habitat. I am comfortable fighting at this weight. I can't really say the same thing from his end. I guess we'll just have to wait and see," he mentioned.

With a lot of doubt hounding him, Belingon is motivated to get the victory.

"All that I can say is that it's going to be an epic fight. But this time around, I will walk away with the win."

Belingon versus Kim is slated to open the main card of ONE on Prime Video 4 on Friday, November 18 with the event starting at 8:00 PM ET in the United States.

Kim Jae Woong
South Korean knockout artist Kim Jae Woong faces rising Chinese prospect Tang Kai at ONE: Only The Brave on January 28, 2022. ONE Championship