Rozenstruik Aims for Fight with Ngannou
Jairzinho Rozenstruik doesn’t have much MMA experience, let alone UFC experience, but he’s already been making impacts and has his eyes set on another big name in Francis Ngannou.
Rozenstruik, a former kickboxer, competed in just two MMA fights in 2012 before joining MMA full-time in 2017. At 9-0, Rozenstruik has had three fights in the UFC: a second-round finish of Junior Albini at UFC Fortaleza, a nine-second knockout of Allen Crowder at UFC Greenville and a 29-second knockout of former heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski at last month’s UFC 244.
Now, Rozenstruik will be headlining UFC Washington D.C. on December 7, taking on faces Alistair Overeem. A win would surge Rozenstruik’s star, and he’ll already have his eye on the upper echelon of heavyweight contenders — namely Ngannou.
“Yeah, it would be a nice fight,” Rozenstruik sad. “He’s the scary guy of the division, the boogeyman. Call me ‘the boo-bye-ay-ga.’ So all the boogeyman of the heavyweight division. If you want to create a bomb in the Octagon, put me against him, lock the doors, and the UFC fans will enjoy it.
Ngannou has won three straight, scoring quick, first-round knockouts of Curtis Blaydes, Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos over the past year. He has recently expressed frustration with being unable to get opponents — a current callout of Alexander Volkov has gone nowhere.
Rozenstruik sees Ngannou’s misfortune as his opportunity.
“If he’’ smart he’ll take the fight. If not, it’s his fault. I think I can make him better because I’m a better fighter and a challenge will always make you better in the game. So if it was me, I would take the fight,” Rozenstruik said.
The full UFC Washington D.C. card can be viewed below:
Main Card (ESPN, 9 p.m. ET)
Alistair Overeem vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
Marina Rodriguez vs. Cynthia Calvillo
Stefan Struve vs. Ben Rothwell
Aspen Ladd vs. Yana Kunitskaya
Cody Stamann vs. Song Yadong
Preliminaries (ESPN, 7 p.m. ET)
Rob Font vs. Ricky Simon
Thiago Alves vs. Tim Means
Jacob Kilburn vs. Billy Quarantillo
Bryce Mitchell vs. Matt Sayles
Early Preliminaries (ESPN+, 5:45 p.m. ET)
Joe Solecki vs. Matt Wiman
Virna Jandiroba vs. Mallory Martin
Makhmud Muradov vs. Trevor Smith
Original Story: BJ Penn