Is a coaching exchange between rivals Team Lakay and Jarred Brooks a possible reality down the road and will Head Coach Mark Sangiao and the top honchos of Team Lakay even consider to take on this proposition?
Tim Wheaton of Sportskeeda recently interviewed Jarred Brooks and suggested the gym will eventually hire him as wrestling coach because at this weight [strawweight], Brooks will out-wrestle everyone at Team Lakay [presumably referring to Team Lakay top strawweights Joshua Pacio and Lito Adiwang, who he already defeated by submission].
To which “The Monkey God” responded he would actually love it.
“I love wrestling and I love helping young people. Last time I was in Singapore, I got to actually hang out with Filipino people. I will be a good match.”, declared Brooks
Wheaton then commented he out-wrestle them (Team Lakay) first and then teach them later.
Brooks is a battle-tested wrestler. He has never been submitted in 20 fights. 7 of his 18 wins came via submission, including an arm-triangle choke against Adiwang that ended with 3:07 left in the second round of their ONE: Next Gen III main event bout aired on November 26, 2021.
There is little doubt he makes a good coach for the Cordillerans, whose next generation stars have shown tremendous improvements on this aspect of the game in recent years.
Brooks also gave credence to Team Lakay’s striking prowess and said he would benefit at the same time from the exchange.
“Me [will be] learning pretty good striking as well. That would be really cool!”, he said.
Striking is one Achilles heel of Brooks. Only two of his wins came via knockouts and he was taken out in one of his couple of losses.
There is also little doubt he could learn a thing or two from Cordilleran warriors on how to prematurely end a fight on strikes.
Brooks, however, is still focused on his mission in the immediate future, dethrone “The Passion” and become the ONE Strawweight ruler.
“Much respect to them but I gotta do what I gotta do, Baby.” he ended.
Brooks, who is in the US when the interview was conducted, bared he is looking to get back in The Circle very, very soon and is aware his next fight could be a title match against Pacio.
He, however, also teased that Number 2 contender Bokang Masunyane is the probably next in line.
On Lito Adiwang
He was also asked to associated a word about Adiwang and said the Team Lakay star is “super explosive”, to which Wheaton nodded in agreement.
“He has great technique.”, he said
Adiwang, who is appearing in The Circle for the first time since his loss to Brooks, but a freak injury forced him to suffer back-to-back defeats against Jeremy Miado.
Brooks was once the reason Adiwang dropped out in the Top 5 strawweight rankings for the second time.
Adiwang already cracked the ONE Official rankings, placing #5 twice, but ran into tough losses that took him out of the list.
Adiwang originally occupied the fifth spot when the first ever rankings were released in April, 2020 but he was taken off the list when he lost to Hiroba Minowa on November 13, 2020 under difficult circumstances that include his mother passing away.
The loss, which ended a seven-game streak, was fueled by a series of takedown moves from Minowa. He made the fight competitive but the judges gave the Japanese a close split-decision that was probably decided on a last minute flurry.
The “Thunder Kid” then recovered with two impressive victories, a knock out of Namiki Kawahara on January 22, 2021 and a lopsided unanimous win over “Wolf Of The Grasslands” Hexigetu on September 24, 2021.
He was again reinstalled as the fifth top strawweight contender but was just as quickly taken off when Brooks came calling.
Adiwang showed he can stand toe-to-toe with Brooks but the latter’s superb grappling and ground and pound led him to an arm triangle choke submission victory.
Adiwang may again be replaced due to the loss.
Wheaton’s full interview of Brooks can be viewed at Sportskeeda’s website where they talked about other superstars of ONE Championship.
By Armando M. Bolislis