Team Lakay utilizing ‘every space’ in training as it adapts to new normal


MANILA, Philippines—The COVID-19 pandemic certainly changed the way society lived and one of its biggest effects was felt in the realm of sports, especially in mixed martial arts.

MMA, being a contact sport, was changed from a largely group-based training to nearly an individual workout with individual athletes training at home either by themselves or with a trainer that lived with them in the same household.

That’s what happened to Team Lakay in Baguio with strict lockdown protocols being implemented in the Philippines.

Head coach Mark Sangiao said that the early stages of the lockdown did drastically change the way they trained but with the protocols easing, they’ve slowly gotten back to their gym albeit in a limited capacity.

“Now it’s okay compared to what we did before wherein the boys were training individually at home,” said Sangiao in Filipino through a Zoom conversation with Inquirer Thursday. “But now we’re back in the gym but we still have to follow protocols.”

“Some guys had trainers with them at home but some didn’t.”

Team Lakay’s return to their facility couldn’t have come to an opportune time as former lightweight champion Eduard Folayang and two more fighters from the stable are set to fight in ONE: Inside the Matrix in Singapore on October 30.

Sangiao said they’ve broken down their team into groups on who can enter the gym at a time.

“The Elite and Class A groups train separately so are the other classes to prevent the gym being too crowded,” said Sangiao.

Baguio has generally eased its community quarantine and that meant the Lakay fighters are once again allowed to do cardio at Baguio Athletic Bowl and Benguet Sports Complex.

Folayang, who will be taking on Australia’s Antonio Caruso in Singapore, said training in

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Kiwi teen tops US chart after Jason Derulo, BTS remix viral TikTok tune

New Zealander Jawsh 685 is taking over the international charts with his siren jams. Image: Jawsh 685 and YouTube via AFP Relaxnews.

A 17-year-old New Zealander whose TikTok anthem “Savage Love” has been viewed more than a billion times said Wednesday “it blows his mind” to have now topped the U.S. Billboard singles chart.

Jawsh 685 — whose real name is Josh Nanai — saw his viral instrumental remixed by U.S. RnB star Jason Derulo and Korean supergroup BTS to become an international megahit.

“It blows my mind to be US number 1,” he said in a social media video post.

“A kid from South Auckland y’know showing other kids you can do it, any street you’re from, anywhere. You can do it, believe in yourself, you can do it. Trust me.”

The young producer’s dream run of success began after the tune — “Savage Love (Laxed – Siren Beat)” — was picked up by TikTok users as the backing track for a hugely popular dance challenge.

The challenge — which saw users showcase their cultural heritage by dressing in traditional outfits and dancing to the song — was also embraced by stars like Jennifer Lopez, Jimmy Fallon.

As of Monday the hashtags #sirenbeat, #sirenbeatchallenge and #laxedsirenbeat have collectively been viewed over two billion times on the video-based social media platform.

Nanai was signed by Columbia Records and has now topped the charts in Britain, Germany, New Zealand and Australia among other countries.

The song initially caused some controversy after RnB superstar Jason Derulo took the original beat, added some lyrics, and promoted it as his own.

Following the controversy, Nanai told local radio station Mai FM in June there had been an exchange of messages between the two before the incident, but that it was “unfinished business.”

Columbia Records

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PBA: Phoenix overcomes NorthPort for 2nd straight win

Jason Perkins posts career best to life Phoenix. PBA IMAGES

MANILA, Philippines—Phoenix chose the perfect moment to mount an offensive run to sink NorthPort, 110-105, in the PBA Philippine Cup Thursday at Angeles University Foundation.

Locked in an 88-88 stalemate in the middle of the fourth quarter, the Fuel Masters eventually found their stroke late, going on a quick 10-0 run to take a 98-91 buffer after Justin Chua’s three with 4:49 left in the game.

Matthew Wright, Chua, and Jason Perkins, who had a career game, then maintained the Fuel Masters’ margin after exchanging buckets with 3:16 to play for the 103-94 lead.

Christian Standhardinger tried to put the Batang Pier back in the fold with a jumper at the 1:28 mark to trim Phoenix’ lead to four, 103-99, but it was Wright who buried the dagger when he drilled a gut-wrenching three for his team’s 106-99 lead with 56 seconds to play.

“Matt never took a bad shot in the first half and he never takes a bad shot because he trusts his teammates that they’re going to be open and they delivered,” said head coach Topex Robinson.

“Obviously it’s nice to win but like what Matt told me ‘don’t celebrate’ and I’m going to take it from our leader. We deserve more and we want to be hungry for more.”

The Fuel Masters improved to a 2-0 card while the Batang Pier are in the inverse.

Perkins tied his career high of 31 points with 12 rebounds while Wright finished with a near triple-double of 23 points, seven boards, and nine assists.

Standhardinger had 28 points, 11 rebounds, and five assists for the Batang Pier while Sean Anthony finished with a triple-double of 23 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists.

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