Former ONE Championship title challenger Iuri Lapicus dead at 27

Former ONE Championship title challenger Iuri Lapicus died Monday after a motorcycle crash in Italy.

Lapicus was 27. According to reports in Italy, Lapicus crashed his motorcycle into a car driven by a woman in Milan last week. According to Milano Today, Lapicus was in a coma until Monday.

His death was confirmed by the promotion in a statement.

“The ONE Championship team is heartbroken over the tragic passing of Iuri Lapicus. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones at this difficult time.”

Lapicus (14-2), a welterweight who was born in Moldova, started his career 14-0. He made his ONE debut in 2019 with a third-round submission of Shannon Wiratchai. He followed that up with an early 2020 67-second submission of Marat Gafurov and got a title shot against champion Christian Lee.

That title fight was delayed after the COVID-19 pandemic, but happened later in 2020. In that bout, Lapicus suffered the first loss of his career when Lee put him away with a first-round TKO.

In a fight six months later, Lapicus was stopped by Alvarez – but Alvarez was disqualified for punches to the back of the head. Later, that DQ loss was flipped to a no contest. This past August, Lapicus was knocked out by Zebaztian Kadestam in what now stands as his final fight.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie