Coming off an undefeated year in 2015, bantamweight prospect Raufeon Stots has kept his momentum going in 2016 with three straight wins.
One of the big differences between this year and last for Stots is that he’s managed to finish all three of his 2016 fights, to which he attributes a move to a new team.
“One big thing for me this year is that I moved to Roufusport, and we’ve really been focused on me finishing – being a finishing fighter,” Stots told MMAWeekly.com. “My mindset and how I approach training, it’s been paying off for me.”
Stots explained that his move to Roufusport came at the urging of his former coach, and UFC Hall of Famer, Pat Miletich.
“I was training at MFS for a while, and I was feeling like I was kind of not growing as a fighter and not expending my knowledge as much as I wanted to,” said Stots. “I had a talk with Pat about it, and Pat told me any jump I went to, to move to Roufusport.”
Stots (6-0) will look to keep his winning ways going when he takes on veteran Jeff Curran (36-17-1) in a bantamweight championship main event at Victory FC 53 on Nov. 23 in Waterloo, Iowa, live on UFC Fight Pass.
“Jeff is a veteran fighter, he’s kind of like a pioneer in the sport, he’s been in the UFC, he has over 50 fights, and you can’t help but have some great respect for the guy and what he’s done in the sport,” Stots said.
“At the same time, I approach him as my equal. Getting in there, you might not be able to tell I have respect for the guy, because I’m coming in there to knock his head off. I’m coming in there to hurt him badly.”
For Stots, facing Curran is the start of what he hopes is series of tough, well-regarded opponents, which will help him work his way to the top of the bantamweight division.
“I’ve got to take it one match at a time, and not look past (Curran), but go in there confident, knowing that I’m ready for this,” said Stots. “This is what I’m here to do. I’m here to beat the best in the world, so I’ve got to face the best fighters in the world.
“You never want to go backwards. I’m training to be the world champion. I’m training to take fights that will argue for myself that I’m the best fighter in the world.”