Ethan Crelinsten and Dante Leon will now meet at Who’s Number One 19 on August 10th, 2023 with the promotion’s lightweight title on the line. It’s an excellent matchup between the two of the best grapplers to ever come out of Canada, and the fact that there’s a title available for the winner is just icing on the cake. Both men are ADCC veterans although they actually competed in different divisions at ADCC 2022, with Crelinsten at 66kg and Leon at 77kg. This means that they’re actually meeting in the middle for the lightweight title at WNO 19, joining a stacked card of top grapplers at the event.
They experienced vastly different fortunes in their respective divisions at ADCC 2022. Crelinsten was submitted in the opening round of the 66kg division by the eventual silver medalist Josh Cisneros, while Leon submitted half his opponents and ended up with a bronze medal at 77kg. They’ve both been in great form recently though, with Crelinsten becoming the Polaris lightweight champion at their most recent event. Although Leon hasn’t added any new titles to his collection, he did put on an absolutely flawless performance at the last WNO event when he submitted Ruan Alvarenga.
Ethan Crelinsten v Dante Leon is actually the second title-fight announced for Who’s Number One 19, with Ffion Davies set to defend her 125lbs belt against top prospect Jasmine Rocha. Neither of them will be serving as the main event though, as that spot has been reserved for a battle between two of the biggest names in the sport. Nicholas Meregali will be taking on Kaynan Duarte for the fifth time in their black belt careers, with both men looking to get the upper hand in the series. The rest of the card looks to be just as action-packed too, with Felipe Pena taking on Haisam Rida and Rida’s teammate Nicky Ryan facing Rene Sousa.