The sport of mixed martial arts has been built upon rivalries. It is, after all, a competition based upon individual glory.
Fighters who grew up together in the same neighbourhood or train at the same gym are no exception, as the bitter battle to prove who is best is one that continues until the end. Taking that to the next level are rivalries between family members, which are bound to be even more heated.
For Gianni and Keanu Subba, along with Angela and Christian Lee, the struggle has been going on almost their entire lives. The two pairs of siblings are now competing not only with one another, but the rest of ONE Championship to become the very best in the world.
However, while one is always out to one-up the other, they do share the same core values instilled in them by their parents. Family is of the utmost importance in Asian culture and it is not something these four have forgotten.
Gianni Subba is a 23-year-old competing in the flyweight division for ONE Championship. Based out of the Bali Muay Thai and MMA gym and a native of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, he has spent his entire pro MMA career with the same promotion.
Following three straight finishes to begin his career, he suffered a tough decision loss to Eugene Toquero in 2014. That didn’t deter Gianni, as he got right back on his horse less than a month later and started his current four-fight win streak that includes a recent split decision vs. Anatpong Bunrad.
Two years younger, Keanu Subba is a member of the featherweight division and trains alongside his brother at Bali Muay Thai and MMA. He signed with ONE last year and promptly picked up two impressive first-round finishes by stopping Florian Garel and Rayner Kinsiong.
Which brother has the better shot at wearing ONE gold before the end of 2016? At this rate, there is no denying that both are on the right path to greatness.
There is no better nickname for Angela Lee than the one bestowed upon her – “Unstoppable.”
The 19-year-old from Hawaii has been just that, finishing opponents in all her fights to date, with four as a professional in ONE Championship. Lee, competing in the promotion’s strawweight division, has recorded two wins via rear-naked choke, one by armbar, and a owns a breathtaking Twister submission that earned her several honors in 2015.
While one would believe that Angela is the younger fighter competing from the Lee family, that title actually belongs to her brother, Christian. The 17-year-old made his debut last year with a 29-second finish of David Meak, followed just a few short weeks ago when he submitted Mahmoud Mohamed with a kimura.
Of the four young fighters, Angela is up next to compete, as she’ll face Rebecca Heintzman at ONE: TRIBE OF WARRIORS in Jakarta’s Istora Senayan this week on 20 Feb.
A win there for her, and a title fight in 2016 should be on the table. Christian, on the other hand, still has a way to go before his shot at glory.