ABU DHABI – Duke Roufus has a few names in mind for whom he’d like to see his star pupil face next.
Former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis (22-9 MMA, 9-8 UFC) currently is sidelined with a broken foot that he suffered in a unanimous decision loss to Nate Diaz at UFC 241. Pettis did not require surgery, and Roufus said he’s targeting a return at UFC 245 on Dec. 14.
“He had a tough break with Nate (Diaz), but all credit to Nate,” Roufus told MMA Junkie in Abu Dhabi at UFC 242. “He had a great performance, and let’s face it: Nate Diaz has arrived. He’s a needle pusher, and all the best to Nate, but we’ll see what happens. (I’m) just positive we’re going to get another big one and we’re excited about it.”
Roufus thinks a fight against “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 1 winner Diego Sanchez would be a wild one.
“An interesting fight that I think would be kind of fun is Diego Sanchez and Anthony (Pettis) – two old-school, crazy Latino legends of the sport,” Roufus said. “If you want to talk about barnburners, that would be fun.”
Another name he has in mind for Pettis is former interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit, who’s currently set to face Mickey Gall at UFC on ESPN 7.
“I think former champion Carlos Condit would be fun, especially at 170,” Roufus said. “I like those two fights a lot. We’ll see what happens if it matches up. I mean, now I’d just like to see another fun fight that motivates him to want to keep doing great things.”
Roufus hinted Pettis will stay at 170 pounds, but the former WEC and UFC lightweight champion, who has competed the majority of his career at 155, is still a highly ranked lightweight.
“He happens to be a contender in both divisions now,” Roufus said. “It’s a fun time. It would be great to win a title and stuff like that. But as a career person, it’s always fun to enjoy your job and he’s having a fun time enjoying his job right now – and that’s all he could ask at this stage of his career.”
UPDATE (6:32 p.m. ET): Sanchez posted on Instagram that it would “be an honor” to fight Pettis and said he’d ask the UFC about making the fight.
View this post on Instagram
This is one of the reasons I love this sport, two warriors ready to do it. if the fans want it. Your only as good as your last performance and my last showing the volcano did not erupt! It is what it is circumstances vary and I did not pull the trigger and lost my opportunity! The lesson has been learned and I vow to leave it all in there come dec! @showtimepettis it would be a honor to stand across the octagon! Thank you for seeing the value in us competing #letsdoit
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: Duke Roufus says he'd like Anthony Pettis to face Diego Sanchez or Carlos Condit next