It is tough to imagine that a fighter who has won 13 consecutive bouts would be able to fly underneath the radar, however Ben Rothwell has managed to do so. It is hard to imagine that a fighter as skilled as he is, fighting in the world’s most depth deprived division, would be this hard to miss. That is until now. The former IFL fighter will look to showcase his skills on the Afflitcion:Banned card.
It would be easy to say that he hasn’t fought anyone of name, especially anyone that is ranked in the top ten. However, not losing a fight in three years is impressive, without a doubt.
Rothwell will be taking on former UFC Heavyweight Champion Andrei Arlovski July 19th, clearly his biggest test to date.
“This is the biggest fight for me so far,” Rothwell told MMAJunkie. “I’ve had some tough fights, some good fights, but Andrei is a former UFC champion and still ranked high in the top 10. And, anytime you’re fighting someone ranked higher than you, it does good things for you. This is a chance for me to truly bring myself into the top 10.”
Sure Arlvoski is not the fighter that he once was, more mentally than physically. But, he knows that Arlovski is still dangerous, and the world needs to see the best Ben Rothwell ever if he is to have his hand raised after the final bell.
“He’s not reckless,” Rothwell stated about his opponent. “He realizes that it only takes one punch. People say that Tim (Sylvia) cracked him and it messed him up…no. Andrei had been knocked out prior to that by Pedro (Rizzo) and in his first fight. So, that’s nonsense to say Tim did that to him. It’s just Andrei saying that there’s no room for mistakes. I respect that, and I’m fighting a dangerous fighter.”
Rothwell knows that he needs to perform at a high level in all aspects of his MMA game if he is to win, as Arlovski is known for being one of the most well rounded fighters the 265-pound division has ever seen.
“When you see Andrei in most of his fights recently in the UFC, they break him down as being well-versed,” Rothwell stated. “I’ve got to show the world this, but I pride myself on being well-versed, too. It’s an MMA fight. There are a lot of ways to win, and I’m prepared to win in any way that’s given to me.”
Not only will a win here shoot Rothwell up the rankings, but it may also provide him some security with Affliction. His former employer, The IFL, is suffering from severe financial issues, where as Affliction’s Executive Vice President is real estate mogul Donald Trump, and financial capital will never be an issue.