World Series of Fighting welterweight Ben “Phoenix Jones” Fodor is refreshingly honest when he looks at his fight career. When he’s doing well, he’ll acknowledge it as many other fighters would. When he’s not doing well, he’ll be more than happy to point it out, even when others might not.
Against Roberto Yong last September at WSOF 23, Fodor believes the fight was out of his control up until the moment he pulled off a first-round submission.
“It was interesting because I don’t know how much of that fight I was winning before I finished that guy,” Fodor told MMAWeekly.com. “I was getting tagged pretty hard standing up. I am a stand-up fighter, so it was very weird to fight somebody with that hand speed – he has remarkable hand speed.”
Fodor believes it was due to his loss five months earlier against Manny Walo that he was able to have the confidence in his ground game to defeat Yong.
“After my Manny Walo fight, we dropped all boxing and pretty much were just doing jiu-jitsu,” said Fodor. “We didn’t do hardly any punches leading up to that (Yong) fight. When we did the takedown, I realized my ground game had gotten a lot better, and that’s what really turned the fight around for me.
“When I used to get taken to the ground, my first response was to tie their arms up and get things back standing up. Now, I’m threatening submissions. It’s a completely different thing on the ground. It’s a completely different thought process.”
For his next bout, Fodor (7-1-1) will have a decidedly more personal stake when he takes on his adopted brother, Caros Fodor (10-5), in a main card catchweight bout on Saturday at WSOF 32 in Everett, Wash.
“I would have never had taken this fight had Caros not been a (expletive) and I had not been mad at him,” said Fodor. “Me not liking Caros is a genuine thing. If we had been on good terms, I would have never accepted the fight. “
When it comes to how he matches up with his brother, Fodor admits that he might not match up skills-wise, but has the intangibles to be able to pick up the win.
“Technically, I don’t think I match up that well to be honest with you,” Fodor said. “Caros has got better hands, cleaner hands, than me, but he doesn’t hit hard, so I’m not worried about being knocked out. On the ground, it’s obvious that his (game) is a lot better than mine.
“Where I win this game is in the transitions, in the scramble between the takedowns and stand-up. Hopefully, I’ll catch him and put him to sleep. I don’t think I’ll win a decision against Caros. Honestly, I think I’ll be losing the fight until I catch him.”
Having spent almost a year waiting for a bout, Fodor is eager to be more active in 2016, and will take whatever fights he can get to make up for lost time.
“I would love to fight more,” he said. “The WSOF fights me on every four or five cards, so it’s hard to be consistent. The good thing about my contract is that it lets me fight local fights as well, so I’m looking to jump and grab some local fights as well as WSOF.”