That’s because Alvarez is going to be competing in a lightweight grand prix, while Johnson will compete in a flyweight grand prix.
“I spent seven years in North America fighting the best in the world,” Johnson said at a press conference announcing the tournaments. “I’ve never traveled to Asia to fight the best. I think now is the perfect time to do it. Now that they just announced a world grand prix for the flyweight division, it’s has always been a dream of mine to actually compete in Asia in a world grand Prix. The biggest thing that you can expect from me for coming over here to compete in Asia is that I’ll do my best. I am taking no shortcuts.”
Johnson and Alvarez were both signed to the promotion in the last month, with Alvarez signing as a free agent and Johnson signing after a trade involving Ben Askren.
Alvarez is happy to be back in Asia, which is where the fighter claims to have made his name in the first place in MMA.
“It was in Asia where I made a name for myself and started my career,” Alvarez said. “Everything has come full circle for me. I can’t say how excited and grateful I am to be part of the ONE Championship family. This is where true martial arts lives. I’ve been away from Asia so long. It’s good to be back. I feel like I found my way again with ONE Championship. I can respect my opponents, and I can go in and fight like a man. I know my lifelong martial arts journey will be truly appreciated here.”
There is no word yet on when the grand prix action will begin for both weight classes or whom will fill the remaining slots in the tournament.