Raul Rosas Jr. Becomes Youngest Fighter To Earn UFC Contract, Dana White Says He’s ‘Blown Away’
Following an impressive victory in the Contender Series Tuesday, 17-year-old Mexican fighter Raul Rosas Jr. signed a contract to compete for UFC, becoming the youngest ever to do so. UFC President Dana White described Rosas as “special” at a press conference following the fight.
“For a 17-year-old to conduct himself the way he did in this fight, I was blown away by it. Blown away,” White said.
In just his sixth professional fight on Sept. 20, Rosas faced off against 25-year-old Mando Gutierrez and defeated him by unanimous decision after three rounds. Competing in front of White and other UFC officials, he received an opportunity to sign a contract with the organization on the spot.
If Rosas competes soon, he could become the youngest fighter in UFC history and would surpass current record holder Dan Lauzon, who debuted at the age of 18 years, 198 days in 2006. Though his age was an obvious obstacle in securing a contract, it didn’t bother Rosas, who said he was confident going into the fight.
“I’ve been saying it since the beginning. Since I was born, I knew this was gonna happen,” Rosas said.
Through six bouts, Rosas remains undefeated and has won five by submission or KO. Even in his decision victory over Gutierrez, however, he overwhelmed his opponent, scoring knockdowns with a number of deceptive maneuvers.
“I’m very, very impressed with this kid. He’s absolutely special.” White said.
Known as “El Niño Problema,” or the Problem Child, Rosas comes from Mexico but is based in California. He will compete in the UFC as a bantamweight fighter, though he has previously competed at the featherweight level as well. He will turn 18 next month. His ambitions are sky-high.
“I know it won’t be easy, but nothing is easy in this life. I will become the youngest UFC champion,” Rosas said. “I don’t care what it takes, nobody is going to take this away from me. If I could fight a top five in my UFC debut, I would, but I have to work my way up there, and I will be up there soon.”
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