Mike Rodriguez didn’t allow the pressure of having his back against the wall affect his approach to UFC on ESPN 15, and it showed.
Rodriguez, 31, took on Marcin Prachnio in a fight that became the co-main event of the Aug. 22 fight card after a positive COVID-19 test scratched Ovince Saint Preux vs. Alonzo Menifield. In just over two minutes, Rodriguez picked up a first-round stoppage in what was his second UFC finish after earning a contract on Dana White’s Contender Series in 2017.
The Massachusetts native joined MMA Fighting’s Mike Heck to recap the big win. He discussed what changed from his December loss to Da Un Jung to set him up for success, his underrated clinch game that Joe Lauzon made part of the game plan, the video game community’s response to his fight, Jon Jones vacating the light heavyweight title and why he believes Dominick Reyes will be the next champion—and will be for a long time.