“The champ doesn’t challenge anyone, he gets challenged.” Dave Leduc
It has been nearly a year since we last saw the King of Lethwei Dave Leduc competing in a Lethwei bout. On August 2, 2019, Leduc faced UFC veteran Seth Baczynski at WLC 9: King of Nine Limbs in Mandalay, Myanmar. A fight that Leduc won via stoppage after dropping him several times to win the WLC inaugural cruiserweight World championship. In that period of time, there have been many fights speculated. I’m going to go over 3 potential fights we could see next from Leduc.
Leduc vs Buakaw
There is many variables to consider for this Super Fight to happen. We start off with the weight Leduc fights usually at 79kg. Compared to Buakaw at 72kg while not a drastic weight difference which man would be willing to sacrifice. Would Leduc be willing to cut the extra weight? Would Buakaw be willing to gain? Or on the other side, it could potentially be a catchweight fight? Either situation is something that will need to be considered. Perhaps the biggest issue that needs addressing is what will the fight rules be with both fighters being the top guys of their respective styles. Buakaw in Muay Thai and Leduc in Lethwei.
It would be interesting to see how this would go as both fighters you feel would be at a sizeable disadvantage to compete in their opponent’s style. Will they be able to compromise on a suitable style to fight? Where will we see where this fight held? It has been suggested that a European country has expressed interest in making this fight happen. Perhaps could it be looked at as WLC’s first show in the USA. That is if Buakaw was to agree to Lethwei rules. It has been said there are many things to consider and this fight is far from a guarantee. There is one thing for sure whatever rules, weight, or country that this fight was to be aired from this would bring in a huge following and support.
Leduc vs Washington
The fight that is most likely to happen first, in my opinion, is a rematch is with Cyrus Washington (ISKA champion, multiple-time Muay Thai champion, and Lethwei veteran). Having fought to a draw in 2017 a fight that Leduc dominated but the will of Washington fought on to get the draw to his name, this is a grudge match of the highest order, with Washington happily admitting to not liking Leduc, with the pedigree and the success in Lethwei to Washington name, and the draw still in people’s minds the hardened Lethwei follower would love to see these two men go at it once more.
Leduc vs Abbasov
OK so this fight for me is the outside option as it takes Leduc to ONE Championship. Owner of ONE, Chatri Sityodtong has spoken of his desire to bring Leduc to ONE Championship. It is unknown as to whether this would be MMA, kickboxing, or a new Lethwei division. If this were to happen, a interesting match up for me would be a Welterweight fight with Kiamrian Abbasov would be a very interesting match up.
Champion Abbasov has a background in Greco Roman wrestling before he took up boxing. However, if you were to think he would control the grappling you may be surprised to hear that Leduc’s first love was grappling. He had to be persuaded to leave grappling behind to take up a stand-up career. This would be a huge fight for all involved. A huge defense for Abbasov, add to that Leduc walks into the title picture and Chatri would have his man this would be a win-win for all involved, but as I said before this is the less likely of the three I have named.
I hope you have enjoyed my views on these potential matchups. Let me know via my social media what you think of these fights, or who you would like to see Leduc fight next.
Honourable mention to Glory fighter Joe Shilling. A very well respected fighter who would be the sort of name and talent that would definitely be of interest to put on a spectacle with Leduc.
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