MENU
#Conor McGregor #UFC 216 #Tony Ferguson #GSP #Nate Diaz #Kevin Lee #Nick Diaz #Michael Bisping #Holly Holm #Anderson Silva #Demetrious Johnson #Fight Night Rotterdam #Quinton Rampage Jackson


george-roop-11.jpgGeorge Roop freely admits he’s not the most talented guy in the UFC’s bantamweight division, but he’s confident he’s the hardest worker. He may also be the most durable.

“If you asked me who the winner of Season 8 of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ was, I’m going to tell you it’s George Roop because I’m the only one left in the UFC,” Roop told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).

Although the 31-year-old Roop is leaving out the heavier members of the cast, who competed in the light-heavyweight division and still are represented in the octagon, he is the only lightweight competitor left from the season.

Of course, he long ago vacated the 155-pound class in which he then competed, cutting first to featherweight and then to the bantamweight class, where his physical gifts are the most apparent.

Gaunt at 135 pounds, Roop returned to featherweight and went 2-3-1 in the division before deciding to make the precipitous drop to bantamweight. In his most recent appearance at UFC 158, he likely saved his job with a decision win over Rueben Duran, which followed back-to-back losses.

At 6-1, Roop (13-9-1 MMA, 3-5 UFC) is three inches short of a footlong height advantage over his next opponent, ex-WEC champ Brian Bowles (10-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC), whom he meets on the Facebook-streamed preliminary card of UFC 160 on Saturday at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

But Roop would like to do more than just beat Bowles. He’d like to go on a run in the division and cement his status as a top 10 bantamweight.

“I feel I’m a little bit under-appreciated sometimes,” he said. “And not just under-appreciated; I don’t get the respect that I deserve.

“Respect shouldn’t just be given to you. You should go out and earn it, and on Saturday night, I’m going to earn my respect. I’m going to open up a lot of eyes and show that I belong in the top 10 of the bantamweight division.”

It’s not an all-or-nothing goal. Roop said he could easily go back to the working world as a pharmacy tech, and his wife makes a handsome living in the pharmaceutical industry. He’s also been a meticulous saver, putting away money earned from his fight purses instead of splurging. He said he’d be fine if UFC matchmakers told him to hang up his gloves. But he still feels he has years left to accomplish more.

“I’ve been very inconsistent under the Zuffa banner,” he said. “I’d like to earn some consistent wins.”

Oddsmakers have him as a solid underdog in the matchup with Bowles, who’s returning from a year-plus layoff, but Roop said that’s nothing new. He’s used to fighting to prove others wrong.

“Let’s face it: I think the only fight under the Zuffa banner that I’ve had an advantage is my last fight,” Roop said.

If he’s bet on himself, that means an extra bonus if he pulls off the upset. It would also be another testament to his staying power.

“[Bowles is] going to have a terrible time managing my distance,” Roop said. “I’m better in the wrestling department. I can decide where this fight goes. I’m better on the ground than he is. And I definitely have a bigger heart, although I don’t believe that’s what wins fights. I believe hard work in the gym wins fights.

“I might not be the most talented guy out there, but my work ethic has kept me where I am.”

For the latest on UFC 160, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.

MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Comments

Show Comments

Related News

USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie rankings, Oct. 3: Who deserves the next shot at Conor McGregor?

  • 13 days ago
  • 12 views

At Saturday’s UFC 216 event, an interim UFC lightweight champion will be crowned. But is that person the one that deserves to challenge for the undisputed belt?Filed under: Bellator, MMA Rankings, Ne read news >>

Demetrious Johnson Deserves Seven-Figure Payday to Move Up for Superfight

  • 5 days ago
  • 10 views

At UFC 216, Demetrious Johnson became the most successful champion in UFC history. By defeating Ray Borg via suplex armbar, Johnson notched his 11th title defense, breaking the record set by Anderson read news >>

UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber remains comfortably retired, 'no temptation' to fight just because

  • 6 days ago
  • 12 views

Urijah Faber admits there are a few scenarios that could lure him back to the cage, though he’s fine staying retired.Filed under: News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos read news >>

UFC's Jeff Novitzky Debunks Jon Jones Controversy | MMAWeekly.com

  • 6 days ago
  • 728 views

Following claims that he declared Jon Jones innocent, UFC exec Jeff Novitzky debunked the controversial reports. read news >>

UFC 217 Extended Preview: Michael Bisping Has Been Racking Up Wins; What About Georges St-Pierre? | MMAWeekly.com

  • 6 days ago
  • 16 views

Take a deeper look into UFC 217: Bisping vs. St-Pierre, which features three world title fights. read news >>

Ex-UFC champ Johny Hendricks opens up on move to Jackson Wink MMA

  • 6 days ago
  • 28 views

Former UFC welterweight champ Johny Hendricks knew he could no longer continue down the same path after his latest loss.Filed under: Featured, News, Radio Highlight, UFC read news >>

Report: Myles Jury vs. Rick Glenn added to UFC 219 in Las Vegas

  • 6 days ago
  • 6 views

An intriguing bantamweight bout appears to be on for UFC 219.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Check Out the Choke That Earned Alex Perez a UFC Contract | MMAWeekly.com

  • 6 days ago
  • 44 views

Alex Perez was a man on a mission when he met Kevin Gray on Contender Series. Perez earned a UFC contract when locked in a D'Arce choke in the first round. read news >>

Tim Means replaces Jesse Taylor vs. Belal Muhammad at UFC Fight Night 121 in Sydney

  • 5 days ago
  • 9 views

Tim Means is in for Jesse Taylor against Belal Muhammad at UFC Fight Night 121 next month in Australia.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Dana White Says WWE Didn't Want Brock Lesnar to Fight in UFC Under Contract

  • 6 days ago
  • 9 views

UFC President Dana White said on a recent episode of ESPN's Dan Le Batard Show that WWE would not allow Brock Lesnar to fight again in the UFC while under contract with WWE. During the interview (h/t read news >>