Sports

A brotherhood brings two warriors together for ONE: Eternal Glory

Bruno Pucci shares a close bond with Christian “The Warrior” Lee. 

The two Evolve MMA-affiliated featherweights enjoy pushing each other in Waipahu, Hawaii as they prepare for their upcoming bouts at ONE: ETERNAL GLORY on Saturday, 19 January.

Not only are they training partners challenging each other daily on the mats, they are now brothers-in-law. 

Since his marriage to Lee’s older sister, Angela (the current ONE Women’s Atomweight World Champion), Pucci and his new family member have noticed startling improvements.

Their chemistry in training was evident to the man known as “Puccibull” the moment he arrived in Hawaii, where the Singaporean family is based.

Pucci, who hails from Brazil, was preparing with Lee for his match against Xie Chao at ONE: WARRIOR’S DREAM in November 2018.

At the same time, the Singaporean was also gearing up for his co-main event bout against Kazuki Tokudome at ONE: HEART OF THE LION, which was scheduled eight days earlier.

“Since our matches were just a week apart, I went through the same training camp with him and it was very intense,” the two-time No-Gi Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu World Champion says.

Lee shares a very similar feeling.

A look back at phenom Christian Lee's five best rounds in ONE!

A look back at phenom Christian Lee's five best rounds in ONE! Jakarta | 19 January | 5:30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneglory19

Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, 8 January 2019

“It’s great to have a skilled training partner like Bruno pushing me,” the Singaporean prodigy confesses. “But it was even greater to have a brother-in-law that treats my sister well and makes her happy.” 

Under the tutelage of Lee’s father and the family patriarch, Ken, who operates the Hawaii-based studio, United MMA, both “Puccibull” and “The Warrior” won their respective November matches.

Now, the duo is hard at work again preparing for their contests at ONE: ETERNAL GLORY. Lee is scheduled to face Edward Kelly in a rematch, while Pucci is slated to clash with Kotetsu “No Face” Boku. 

“Everyday, our core here is mixed martial arts,” Pucci says. 

"We focus a lot on transitions, from takedowns to grappling to striking. It has helped me tremendously in improving my overall skill set.”

Lee notes that their different martial arts backgrounds have helped them to evolve into better athletes. 

“Bruno and I grew up training different disciplines. He started in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and I started with mixed martial arts,” Lee explains. 

“We often share techniques and ideas with each other, and there is always that opportunity to learn and try something different.”

Despite their age difference, Pucci is open to learning from the younger 20-year-old sensation.

“I may be like an older brother, but coming here and training with Christian, I see how he has been mastering martial arts since a young age,” the 28-year-old begins.

Bruno Pucci's jumping guillotine was locked in TIGHT.

Bruno Pucci's jumping guillotine was locked in TIGHT. Jakarta | 19 January | 6:00PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneglory19

Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, 1 January 2019

“He is very experienced, plus he fought Boku before and his advice is really useful in helping me prepare for my upcoming match against Boku.”

Lee has also been able to benefit from Pucci. 

“He has been helping to play my opponent during training camp,” the Singaporean says. “He gives reactions that he thinks my opponent will have during our sessions, and it helps me to plan my counters and moves.”

With both Pucci and Lee competing in ONE Championship’s stacked featherweight division, the strong bond formed from training together has given each competitor added confidence heading into ONE: ETERNAL GLORY.

“Since training with my dad, Bruno’s game has improved in every area and he is now a threat to everyone in the featherweight division,” Lee acknowledges. “Boku will be in for a [tough] fight. I predict Bruno submitting him in the second round."

The Brazilian makes a bold prediction, too.

“I really think Christian is going to win this fight. In their last fight, I don’t think Edward really stood a chance and it was unfortunate the disqualification happened,” Pucci explains.

“This time around, having trained and prepared with him, Christian is going to be much more aware of how he’s going to fight. I believe it’s going to be similar to their previous match, but with Christian finishing Edward in the first round.”

With both athletes sharing the same passion for the beauty and discipline of martial arts, and now coming closer together as a family, 2019 looks to be an extremely promising year for these talented warriors.

MMA (MIXED MARTIAL ARTS)