Attempting to snap a two-fight losing skid at UFC Vegas 50 next weekend, Karl Roberson insists both him and opponent, Khalil Rountree Jr. have a lot to prove in their next outing – ahead of a really pivotal main card matchup.
Roberson, a product of Dana White’s Contender Series back in July 2017, entered the UFC riding an undefeated 5-0 record, but has since managed to win just four while dropping defeats in four other Octagon outings.
The 31-year-old New Jersey native initially made a middleweight landing in his promotional debut, stopping now UFC alum, Darren Stewart with a first round rear-naked choke.
In the time since his win over the now-Cage Warriors feature, Roberson has turned in victories over Jack Marshman, Wellington Turman, and Roman Kopylov – in between defeats to current light heavyweight kingpin, Glover Teixeira, middleweight standout, Marvin Vettori, Roufusport grappler, Brendan Allen, and PFL feature, Cezar Ferreira.
A renowned finisher, Roberson, who has taken his talents to Kansas City to train under the renowned James Krause at Glory MMA & Fitness, earned his UFC call with a stunning 15-second knockout win over Ryan Spann, and holds two knockout victories to go with four submission triumphs.
Amid his recent slide and pair of losses, Roberson has booked a pairing with The Ultimate Fighter 23 finalist, Rountree – who himself has dropped losses in three of his most recent five Octagon appearances.
Speaking with Current MMA reporter, James Lynch ahead of his pairing against Rountree, Roberson insisted that a high-velocity pairing is in store for onlookers, but maintained both have a lot to prove ahead of the key showdown.
“Stylewise, it’s a banger,” Karl Roberson said of his fight with Khalil Rountree. “He likes to throw, I like to throw. I don’t back down, he don’t really back down. My cardio (is) better than his, but it’s gonna be a banger. We both (are) like, semi-traditional who evolved. We like to bang, we got heart. And we’re both at turning points where it’s time to prove something, and we both wanna go in and do that. I just think I have way more tricks up my sleeve, and I bring way more to the table that he’s not ready for.”
Sharing his thoughts on the form of Rountree ahead of their fight, Roberson maintains that while sometimes The Ultimate Fighter finalist does not always manage to put things together come fight night, he is always preparing for the best version of an opponent possible.
“I want the best version of him, because he’s going to get the best version of me,” Karl Roberson said. “I think it’s more of the opponent – not him. If the opponent takes more of how he gets into his groove and what he’s comfortable with doing. I’m not that type of opponent to really get into the groove with him. I’m gonna try and break him down, I’m ready for everything he brings. He’s a heavy hitter, but that’s it. Like that’s all we have to worry about is this, defense is taking away his power so we gonna work.”
UFC Vegas 50 is set to take place on March 12. from the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada — with a light heavyweight showdown between one-time title challenger, Thiago Santos, and the streaking Magomed Ankalaev booked to take main event status.
You can also listen to Current MMA’s interview with Karl Roberson ahead of UFC Vegas 50 over on Spotify.