After building a successful career for himself in his native New Zealand, heavyweight prospect Chris “Igor” Lokteff stepped onto the international stage with his ONE FC debut last November.
In what ended up being a closer fight than Lokteff probably anticipated, he defeated former Bellator heavyweight Tony Johnson via split decision in his first bout in Asia.
“It felt good,” said Lokteff of his win over Johnson. “Tony was a great opponent and put up a great fight.
“I went in there and did what I trained for and that is as much as I could do. It was great to come out with the win.”
After such a close win, Lokteff understandable went back to the drawing board and has worked hard to continue to develop himself as a fighter.
“You always feel confident coming out of a big win, but I am always at the gym training all aspects of MMA,” Lokteff told MMAWeekly.com. “I want to be a well-rounded fighter and not focus on any one aspect.”
Lokteff (12-1) feels being a complete fighter will be the key to victory when he returns to ONE FC on May 2 in Manila, Philippines, to face veteran James McSweeney (12-11) in a heavyweight showdown.
“He is going to be a tough opponent,” said Lokteff of McSweeney. “But again I can only do what I have trained and just be more well-rounded in every aspect (of the fight than my opponent is).”
For Lokteff not only could a win over McSweeney be big for his career overall, but it could also bring him one step closer to his ultimate goal.
“(I’m aiming) definitely a ONE FC title,” said Lokteff. “I’m coming for that belt.
“Thank you to my coaches and my manager. To my sponsors, thank you for your support leading into this fight. And finally thank you to my supporters, teammates, friends and family!”