With all of the MMA events going on in the Carolinas this summer, you'd be hard pressed to find a more unusual main event than the one that UFA (Ultra Fighter America) is presenting this Friday, June 11th in Charleston, SC. The final fight of the "Clash at the Coliseum" card will have South Carolina middleweight David Griffin (3-1 amateur record) making his pro debut and stepping up 20 pounds to the light heavyweight division to face UFC veteran Houston Alexander (9-6). So what would make Griffin want to take such a fight in his pro debut?
"When I was asked to compete on this show they asked how I'd feel about fighting Houston Alexander and I just chuckled and said that I'll fight anybody. That's my attitude. Fighting is a challenge and I don't want to fight a guy that's 4-20 and beat him in under a minute. That doesn't do anything for me. I want to challenge myself against the best. With big risk comes big reward."
Griffin currently works as a firefighter in the Charleston area and trains at American Fighter MMA. He is a guy that isn't accustomed to taking the easy road and seeks out challenges. Previously, he has invested a lot of time and hard work into competitive bodybuilding. Griffin knows that it will take that same sort of focus and dedication to be able to execute a game plan and stay competitive against a heavier, far more experienced fighter. But Griffin insists he's up for tomorrow's challenge:
"I feel great. I've got my weight up to about 212 and I'll weigh in tonight at 205. I feel like I'm at 100% and I have my game plan ready. I've studied tape of every one of his fights and I feel like I know him better than he knows himself. I know what he likes to do and I know the combinations he likes to use. I'm ready to go out there and give it my all."
In the grand scheme of things, this is a low risk fight for Griffin. He plans to pursue a pro MMA run in the middleweight division but is excited for the opportunity to step up in weight and get things started against a UFC veteran. This is most certainly not a conventional first opponent. But sometimes unconventional can be fun. And something tells me that this fight will be anything but boring. Other fights on this card include:
Matt Jaggers vs Matt Horning
Joe Jordan vs Jay Ellis
Steve Cotterman vs Christopher McNally
Jason Hicks vs Jeremy Joles
Josh Martin vs Joshua Robertson
Alex McDonald vs Chad Kelly
Michael Hazzard vs Jarrett Smotrilla
Ryan Williamson vs Christian Johnson
Christopher Bolten vs Travis Wilson
Jeremy Severn vs Gabe Abkarien
Nate Yokoyama vs Cody Canada