Rodtang Jitmuangnon Still Looking Into MMA Move

Rodtang Jitmuangnon is the undisputed king of the ONE flyweight Muay Thai division, but it does not mean that he is completely settling into his roots.

Ahead of his upcoming fight with Jacob Smith in the ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Grand Prix, Rodtang revealed that his desire to become a mixed martial artist (MMA) is still within his sights.

“I didn’t want to wait because I still have my Muay Thai skills, and I still want to fight. That’s why I chose to join the World Grand Prix. But my goal is to join MMA. My plan is to finish this World Grand Prix and then fully join MMA,” Rodtang said of his plans.

The Thai phenom was able to somewhat dip his toes into the multifaceted sport after facing former UFC flyweight titleholder Demetrious Johnson in a hybrid Muay Thai-MMA exhibition back in March at ONE X.

Rodtang utterly dominated the opening Muay Thai opponent round against Johnson, but with the rules shifting towards MMA in the second round, Johnson was able to take advantage of his lack of experience to secure the rear-naked choke.

Despite the loss, Rodtang took it as a learning experience as he prepares for his eventual jump to the sport.

“The reason I don’t feel disappointed or sad after losing to [Demetrious Johnson] is because we already know that he is an MMA legend, while I’m still very new. My training and experience [are] still very young in MMA, especially in the ground game,” noted Rodtang.

“There’s no regret or sadness because fighting with the great ones is an experience.”

The striking department is already established in Rodtang’s DNA as a fighter, but it will take some time for him to develop his grappling skills before he decides to officially make the move.

For now, his focus will be on coming out victorious against Smith at ONE 157 on May 20.

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