Undefeated in MMA, Xaropinho talks Jiu-Jitsu, signing with RFA

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Christian “Xaropinho” Uflacker, black-belt in Jiu-Jitsu and MMA fighter. Photo: Kuba Mantle / mantofight.com

Holding a perfect record in MMA with five wins and no losses, GMA member Christian “Xaropinho” Uflacker is already preparing for his next battle. The Jiu-Jitsu black-belt based in Chicago has signed with a new promotion called Resurrection Fighting Alliance (RFA) and will make his debut in October. His opponent and the date of the bout have yet to be announced, however.

Our GMA in Chicago, Christian made his last MMA fight at Bellator in December when he beat Cliff Wright by unanimous decision. In a talk with GRACIEMAG, he discussed the new contract and analyzed his passage through Bellator:

“The opportunity was presented by my manager, Mike Kogan. The RFA has plans to keep me very active and they have been growing a lot. The main goal of the event is to show the talent of fighters, so they can have a future opportunity to fight in the UFC. I found this a fantastic idea,” said Xaropinho.

“The time I was at Bellator was good for me. I am grateful for the opportunity, but Mike told me they were not interested in getting me fights. My MMA record is good, and I want to improve it even more, and for that I need to be fighting—not what was happening there,” said Xaropinho.

To keep in shape, in late June Xaropinho participated in the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship in Long Beach, but did not have a good showing due to an injury, and was stopped in the second fight in the lightweight division: “I love Jiu-Jitsu, I was happy to have fought the Worlds, but before I signed up I hurt a rib wrestling. I went two weeks without training and then resumed light training. I thought I was in good shape; I fought and won my first fight with a reverse omoplata on my opponent [Diogo Almeida], but felt the rib again and could not continue in the tournament,” he recalled.

A black-belt under Carlinhos Gracie, Christian shared his view on the difference between Jiu-Jitsu and MMA: “In MMA you have to work more on explosion—there’s no way to hold the position for long. If you hold the opponent for ten seconds without attacking the referee will get you back up. In Jiu-Jitsu, the referee lets you take your time in the position, so athletes do not explode as much
as in MMA,” he said.

Xaropinho even talked about the tough lightweight division of the UFC: “There’s a ton of tough fighters in the UFC’s lightweight division, so I think it will be difficult for anyone to dominate for long. Ben Henderson won his last two bouts narrowly. Today, any
athlete in the top five has a chance to be champion. To me, Anthony Pettis, for example, has great chances to win his next fight with Ben at UFC 164 at the end of the month,” he concluded.

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