How UFC 175's Rob Font expected the unexpected

Elias Cepeda
Rob Font makes his UFC debut tonight against George Roop.

UFC bantamweight Rob Font

Rob Font makes his UFC debut tonight against George Roop.

Two months ago, there was a lot that featherweight prospect Rob Font knew. He knew that if he kept on winning, he was bound to get the call to fight in the UFC at some point soon.

Font also knew that should he get that call, he’d then drop down to featherweight to compete in the UFC. Well, a lot of what Rob Font thought he knew a couple months ago turned out to come true, but with a couple twists.

He did indeed get the call up to the big leagues, but much sooner than he expected. Font was offered a fight at UFC 175 – one of the two biggest cards of the year for the UFC – and had to forgo plans to fight in August in a smaller promotion.

He was happy to do it, of course, since the UFC is where almost all MMA fighters aspire to be. Font also didn’t expect to fight such a seasoned UFC veteran in his promotional debut.

Font was initially scheduled to fight Brazilian Douglas Andrade, who has fought in the UFC just once before, but then his opponent was switched to George Roop, who has fought fourteen total times in the WEC and UFC. UFC debuts are always big challenges but Font certainly knows that he’s got his hands full with the short-notice drop to bantamweight and an experienced and successful opponent.

Fortunately, Font, his coaches and his management had a plan that he believes has prepared him well for the task. “I was planning to fight at 135 at the end of the summer anyhow, so I was already working my way down to bantamweight when I got the call to fight in the UFC,” he tells Cagewriter.

“The plan was always to move down to bantamweight when I got the call to the UFC. So, my coaches were moving me there gradually. So, it isn’t as if I had a whole bunch to lose still when I got the call.”

As for his opponent changes, Font admits that Roop is a bit more of a challenge than he expected in his first UFC fight but has come around to the idea of it. “At first, I was hoping to get a fight with someone who was debuting or had just had one or two fights in the UFC,” Font says.

“I would have rather not fought someone so experienced at first, but it’s good. I realize it’s a big opportunity to fight Roop. If I beat him, it will shoot me right up the rankings and let people know what I can do.”

It is a bit ironic that Font had planned to move down to 135 pounds so that he would no longer fight such large opponents and now that he has, he will face the guy with the longest reach in the bantamweight division in Roop. Font believes that all his featherweight experience has prepared him well for dealing with bigger guys, however.

“It is kinda funny that I am going down to bantamweight so the guys wouldn’t be so big and now I’m fighting Roop,” he laughs.

“But now all those times where I fought bigger guys will pay off. I’m ready.” 

Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

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