The UFC’s light heavyweight division has felt the bitter tinge of criticism for quite some time now. It wasn’t too long ago that the 205 lb. weight class was arguably the deepest on the roster. At the moment, the division is again on the rise as young are climbing into the top of the division. One fighter primed to do so is Mike Rodriguez.
Rodriguez trains out of the storied Lauzon MMA gym, where many of New England’s best fighters call home. Fighters such as Calvin Kattar, Rob Font, Randy Costa and more. The light heavyweight had an impressive career on the local circuit. During his time fighting for New England promotions, Rodriguez went 8-2. Each of his 8 victories came by way of stoppage, 2 by submission, 6 by TKO/KO.
After solidifying his position as a legitimate prospect from the New England region, the Lauzon MMA fighter received an invite to the first season of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series. There he took on Jamelle Jones whom he impressively defeated by way of first round KO. His performance earned him a contract with the UFC.
In his debut with the promotion, Rodriguez dropped a unanimous decision to Devin Clark at UFC 223. That being his only UFC competition, the Boston fighter looks to even out his promotional record at UFC on FOX 31.
UFC on FOX 31
In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Rodriguez takes on Adam Milstead. Milstead comes into the matchup needing a win. UFC on FOX 31 marks his 4th fight with the promotion. Over the course of his three-fight career with the UFC, Milstead is 1-1, 1 NC. With his mixed success early with the promotion, Milstead makes his 2nd appearance in the light heavyweight division. Previously a heavyweight, Milstead took on Jordan Johnson at the 205 lb. limit in his most recent appearance. For Mike Rodriguez, light heavyweight is a natural weight class. His weight, size, and strength match well with the athletes who compete at the weight limit. The matchup between the two is interesting for a multitude of factors one of which being the size.
With Milstead moving down a weight class, he figures to hold extra strength. Also, the height of Milstead will nearly matchup Rodriguez. Milstead measures in at 6’3, while Rodriguez comes in at a towering 6’4.